Seborrheic dermatitis is a skin condition that normally affects the scalp (dandruff) but can also appear on the face. It makes your skin red, itchy, scaly and flaky. This condition will not harm you but can be embarrassing and uncomfortable. Treatment is designed to control inflammation and reduce buildup of scaly skin. You can treat this condition with conventional medications and self-care strategies. According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, certain natural treatments might benefit seborrheic dermatitis as well; consult an experienced health care provider experienced in treating skin conditions naturally to design a safe and effective regimen.
Antifungals and Corticosteroids
Over-the-counter steroid creams and anti-fungal medications can alleviate mild symptoms. If they are proving unsuccessful, your doctor might recommend stronger topical steroid and antifungal creams, often in combination. A commonly prescribed regimen includes Nizoral and Desowen.
Immunomodulators like Protopic and Elidel act on the immune system to prevent inflammation; they also have antifungal properties, making them an effective treatment for seborrheic dermatitis. These medications suppress immunity, potentially causing serious side effects. For this reason, they are reserved for cases that have not responded to other treatments or if you cannot tolerate other treatments.
Herbs and Homeopathy
Many herbs, when applied as a cream or salve, have a long history of use in treating skin conditions. The following herbs might potentially help sebhorreic dermatitis to some extent: chamomile, chickweed, calendula, licorice, witch hazel, marshmallow or sarsaparilla.
Certain homeopathic treatments might address the inflammation and other symptoms of seborrheic dermatitis. Take as directed on the product label. Antimonum crudum treats cracked skin. Apis mellifica works best if your skin feels hot and swollen. Rhus toxicodendron alleviates itching and burning. Sulphur also treats itching and burning accompanied by scaling skin. While homeopathic remedies might help, they are not to replace traditional medications prescribed by your doctor; always consult your doctor if you're considering this route.
Fish oil supplements are effective against inflammation; take as directed on the label. Consult with your doctor about fish oil if you take blood-thinning medications. Evening primrose oil is rich in GLA, a fatty acid that reduces inflammation, itching and promotes overall skin health; take 6 g per day. Bromelain, an enzyme found in pineapple, can inhibit inflammation; take 100 to 250 mg up two to four times a day. • .
Certain foods can trigger inflammation, which is a trigger for this condition. Reduce consumption of saturated fats, like animal products and margarine, sugar and refined foods like white bread. Increase consumption of essential fatty acids, which are found in nuts and cold-water fish like salmon and halibut. Eating lots of fresh fruits and vegetables is also beneficial.