seborrheic dermatitis.jpeg

Seborrheic dermatitis is a very common form of mild eczema that is most common on the scalp but can also be found on the face and body.

What Does Seborrheic Dermatitis Look Like?

Seborrheic dermatitis is most common on the scalp where it causes scaling or flakes of skin. Often the scaly patches are reddish but most people do not see this because it is underneath their hair.    "Dandruff" is an uninflamed form of seborrheic dermatitis.

Seborrheic dermatitis is also common on the face, where it causes red, scaly patches on the eyebrows, forehead, or on the cheeks near and around the nose.  Other areas that can sometimes be involved include the chest and underarms.  It is usually not symptomatic but occasionally the scalp can be itchy.    Seborrheic dermatitis can also be seen in babies in whom it is sometimes called "cradle cap". 

What Causes Seborrheic Dermatitis?

A yeast that commonly occurs on the skin is thought to play a role in causing seborrheic dermatitis.  Other factors thought to contribute include the skin's oil production, hormones and genetics.

How is Seborrheic Dermatitis Treated?

Seborrheic dermatitis usually responds to the following treatments:

  • Anti-yeast creams 
  • Mild topical cortisone creams
  • Topical immunomodulators
  • Medicated shampoos with anti-yeast ingredients, tar or zinc

eborrheic dermatitis is a chronic condition and treatment needs to be continued in order to control the rash.