Does Seborrheic Dermatitis Have a Cure?

Seborrheic dermatitis (SD) is a disorder that causes inflammation and flaking of the skin. It is a chronic (long-lasting) condition for which there is no cure.

The main symptom of SD is dandruff, or flaking skin on the scalp. SD also causes scaly patches, red skin, and stubborn sores. This condition mostly affects your scalp, but it can occur on other areas of your body that have a lot of oil-producing glands, such as your eyebrows, sides of the nose, ears, eyelids, chest, and upper back.

You can control this condition with medicine and by keeping affected areas clean and dry.

What Causes Seborrheic Dermatitis?

Doctors do not know what causes seborrheic dermatitis. It may be related to:

A yeast (fungus) called Malassezia that lives on your skin

Changes in hormones during puberty or pregnancy

A problem with your immune system that may run in families

The yeast that causes seborrheic dermatitis also lives on everyone’s skin. But people who get this condition seem to have an abnormal reaction to the yeast.

Seborrheic dermatitis is a type of inflammation of the skin. It results in scaly patches, red skin and stubborn dandruff. Seborrheic dermatitis can affect your whole body, but it often appears on these areas:




Nose, cheeks and ears



Groin area


Genital area

There is currently no cure for seborrheic dermatitis. However, there are several ways in which you can manage your symptoms.

If you have mild seborrheic dermatitis, you may find relief from your symptoms by using products that contain coal tar, salicylic acid, or sulfur. You can buy these products over the counter at a pharmacy.

If your seborrheic dermatitis is more severe, your doctor may prescribe a medicated shampoo and other treatments to help ease your symptoms.

If you have severe seborrheic dermatitis and other treatments haven’t helped, your doctor may recommend steroid injections or creams. These contain corticosteroids, which can reduce inflammation and itching.

Seborrheic dermatitis is a long-term skin condition that mainly affects your scalp. It causes scaly patches, red skin and stubborn dandruff. Seborrheic dermatitis can also affect oily areas of the body, such as the face, sides of the nose, eyebrows, ears, eyelids and chest. Often called dandruff or seborrhea, the condition isn’t contagious and runs a chronic course.

Causes of Seborrheic Dermatitis

The exact cause of seborrheic dermatitis is unknown. It may be related to:

A yeast (fungus) called malassezia that is in the oil secretion on the skin

An irregular response to malassezia

A combination of factors, including hormones, a person’s genes or something in the environment that irritates your skin

Seborrheic dermatitis may be more of a chronic (long-term) condition for some people. But treatment can ease symptoms and help prevent flare-ups. Seborrheic dermatitis is an inflammatory skin condition. It often affects the scalp, causing scaly, red patches. It can also occur on other parts of the body, such as the face, upper chest, and back. The affected areas may appear greasy or dry. Seborrheic dermatitis is a common skin condition in infants, adolescents, and adults. The exact cause of seborrheic dermatitis isn’t known. The most likely culprits are overgrowth of a yeast that lives on everyone’s skin or an irregular response of one’s immune system to the yeast. Those factors can cause the skin cells to grow too quickly, leading to cells that pile up on the surface of the skin as they die. There are many treatments available today for seborrheic dermatitis. Some you apply directly to your skin and others you take by mouth. Your doctor may prescribe more than one type at the same time to treat your condition effectively.

Seborrheic dermatitis is a skin condition that causes red, itchy, flaky skin. It can affect people of any age and appears to be more common in men than in women. The condition is named after sebum, the oily substance that our bodies produce to keep our skin and hair moisturized.

Seborrhoeic dermatitis is thought to be linked to an overgrowth of the yeast Malassezia furfur. However, this doesn’t mean that it’s contagious or caused by an infection. It just means that drugs with antifungal properties can help reduce symptoms in some cases.

So far, there’s no cure for seborrheic dermatitis. The good news is that most people can manage their symptoms with treatment and self-care.

Seborrheic dermatitis is a chronic, recurring condition that affects the scalp, eyebrows, eyelids, nasolabial folds (area adjacent to the sides of the nose), ears and sometimes the chest. Seborrheic dermatitis may also occur in infants, which is referred to as cradle cap.

Although it is not a life-threatening condition, seborrhea often causes embarrassment and affects self-esteem. The disease usually causes flaky scales or crusty plaques of skin to develop on the scalp and other oily areas of the body. The affected areas are often itchy or sore.

Seborrheic dermatitis can be found in association with certain illnesses, including AIDS (acquired immunodeficiency syndrome), Parkinson’s disease, hormonal disorders, recovery from stroke or heart attack and alcoholism. In infants younger than 3 months old, seborrhea appears as thick yellow scales on the scalp. This type of seborrhea is known as cradle cap. Cradle cap usually clears up by itself within 1 year but can be treated with medicated shampoos.

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