Dandruff is a common scalp condition that occurs when skin cells on the scalp shed more quickly than usual, resulting in the appearance of white or yellow flakes. While the exact cause of dandruff is not fully understood, it is believed to be caused by a combination of factors, including an overgrowth of a type of yeast called Malassezia.
Malassezia is a naturally occurring yeast that lives on the scalp and feeds on the oils produced by the hair follicles. In some people, an overgrowth of Malassezia can lead to an increase in skin cell turnover and the development of dandruff.
While Malassezia is a common cause of dandruff, it is not the only factor that can contribute to the condition. Other factors that can contribute to dandruff include dry skin, hormonal changes, stress, and certain skin conditions like psoriasis or eczema.
To treat dandruff, it's important to use a shampoo that is specifically designed to target the underlying cause of the condition. Shampoos that contain antifungal agents, such as ketoconazole or selenium sulfide, can be effective at reducing the overgrowth of Malassezia on the scalp and reducing dandruff. Additionally, using a gentle shampoo and conditioner, avoiding excessive heat styling or hair treatments, and practicing good scalp hygiene can help reduce the occurrence of dandruff.