Exercise & Scalp Itching


Exercise causes an irritating scalp itch because of a build up of oils in the sweat glands on your head. Washing with a non-moisturizing shampoo will treat mild conditions, but excessive itching may indicate seborrheic dermatitis.

Possible Cause

Scalp itch associated with exercise is mostly likely caused by seborrheic dermatitis, an inflammatory skin irritation caused by excessive sweating. While this condition is often associated with dandruff, because of the white flakes that develop, it is not caused by dry skin. Instead, seborrheic dermatitis commonly affects areas of the body dominated by oil-secreting sweat glands, indicating that the area is too oily rather than too dry.


Treat seborrheic dermatitis with a salicylic acid shampoo, which will remove the oil on your scalp. If scalp itch continues, your dermatologist may prescribe an anti-fungal medicated shampoo since an untreated condition may result in a yeast infection.


To avoid getting seborrheic dermatitis and to mitigate scalp itch after exercise, wash with a shampoo for oily hair. Individuals prone to seborrheic dermatitis should shampoo their hair daily.

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