Can Seborrheic Dermatitis Spread?

By Dr. Eddie Valenzuela

There is no evidence that seborrheic dermatitis spreads.

Seborrheic dermatitis is, most simply, a case of severe dandruff. This inflammatory skin condition causes yellow or white oily, flaky scales to pop up anywhere near the body’s oil-producing glands. There are cases of seborrheic dermatitis on the eyebrows, neck, face, and skin folds.

Though it may look painful, uncomfortable, or unsightly, this condition isn’t an indicator of poor hygiene, nor is it painful. It generally goes away all by itself, though you can use a seborrheic dermatitis shampoo to help loosen scale and clear away flakes.

Seborrheic Dermatitis Symptoms

This irritating skin condition affects adults and children. It even affects 42% of newborn babies in the first year of life, though this younger manifestation is generally called “cradle cap.”

The most common symptom of seborrheic dermatitis is a yellow, light brown, or white buildup of scaly or oily skin flakes. It can also cause red, thick, swollen, or scaly skin surrounded by pink patches.

Though it usually appears on the scalp or forehead, it’s also been known to manifest on other parts of the body where there are high densities of oil-producing glands:

  • Eyebrows
  • Nose
  • Diaper area on babies
  • Neck folds
  • Mouth
  • Inner elbows, behind the knees, armpits, and other skin folds

Even though it can pop up on different parts of the body, it generally does not spread.

What Causes Seborrheic Dermatitis?

The causes are many and varied. The exact cause is still unknown. On many educational web pages you will see that seborrheic dermatitis might be connected to overactive sebaceous glands. The sebaceous glands, located throughout the body, produce and secrete sebum, the oily substance necessary to hydrate and protect the skin. If there’s too much sebum, it will cause dead skin to clump together and flake off.

The most likely cause though is that seborrheic dermatitis is due to Malassezia, a naturally-occurring yeast that lives on the skin and eats sebum. If there’s too much sebum on the skin, the Malassezia may over-eat and secrete irritating byproducts that can cause the skin to flake and clump.

What Can You Do About Seborrheic Dermatitis?

There isn’t yet a permanent cure for this condition, but there are ways you can help loosen scale, remove flakes, and prevent future scale buildup. For example, you can use a shampoo for seborrheic dermatitis like Dr. Eddie’s Happy Cappy Medicated Shampoo and Body Wash.

Most dandruff and seborrheic dermatitis shampoos on the market are designed for adults and are therefore too harsh to use on sensitive young skin. Happy Cappy Medicated Shampoo and Body Wash is specifically made to be gentle on skin but tough on seborrheic dermatitis. It’s hypoallergenic, dye-free, non-comedogenic, non-irritating, fragrance-free, and paraben-free and made with 95% natural ingredients and active ingredient Pyrithione Zinc to fight back against flakes.

Use Dr. Eddie’s Happy Cappy Medicated Shampoo and Body Wash once per day during flare-ups, and then every two to three days once the flakes are cleared to prevent new build-up.

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Dr. Eddie Valenzuela is an award winning pediatrician and the founder and CEO of Pediatric Solutions, LLC.

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