Folliculitis is also known as the inflammation of hair follicles. Once bacteria manage to enter the pore of the hair follicles, the microorganisms can grow and multiply. The pore contains organic matter, which can provide essential nutrients for bacterial growth. This means, folliculitis can occur in any part of the body as long as there are hair follicles. One example is scalp folliculitis. The condition is also called as Proprionibacterium folliculitis or acne necrotica miliaris.
Scalp Folliculitis Causes
There may be several causes of folliculitis. These include:
- Infection. The causative agents may vary, such as bacteria, yeasts, and mites. Infections caused by these microorganisms can extensively damage the follicles. Oily scalps are prone to infection, as sebum can clog and block the pores.
- Excessive sweating
- Hot and humid weather.
- Harsh chemicals from shampoos, conditioners, hair products, and treatment.
- Tight fitting hats
Scalp Folliculitis Symptoms
It usually starts as miniscule, extremely pruritic pustules at the scalp. These small, pimple-like elevations are usually prominent at the hair line. When treatment is not administered immediately, scalp folliculitis may progress into crusted and sore pustules. Scalp folliculitis is not a severe condition. However, it may progress into more severe conditions. Acne necrotica is a derivative of scalp folliculitis where the pustules transform into papules. The surrounding crusts become black and leave scars similar to that of chicken pox. Moreover, scalp folliculitis if not treated immediately may become cellulitis. Other symptoms of the condition include:
- Purulent material within the pustules.
- Temporary hair loss and bald patches.
Scalp Folliculitis Home Treatment
It usually can be treated with a mild, natural shampoo. Some dermatologists may also prescribe shampoos and hair washes containing antifungal properties. Individuals affected by the disease may employ the following remedies:
- Hair Care Treatment. Patients should wash the hair with cold or lukewarm water. As much as possible, hot water should be avoided as this can lead to the over production of oil or sebum. Oily hair may precipitate the development of infection by attracting bacteria.
- Deep-Conditioning treatment. Chemical based hair treatments will only worsen the condition. There are natural treatments available that deeply condition the hair. Concoctions and mixtures of egg yolk, coconut milk, honey, and fresh tomato juice can help cleanse the hair follicles.
- Herbal treatment. Cleaver has been used for symptoms such as swelling and inflammation. Furthermore, it can also be used to treat abscesses. A compress made of cleavers may be applied to the pustules directly.