What is Causing My Head to Itch – Dandruff or Head Lice?

Our experts at Fresh Heads Head Lice Treatment Center, are often asked how to tell the difference between dandruff and head lice. It’s true that both conditions are common and cause uncomfortable itchiness. The good news is that both conditions are treatable using their unique treatments.

Dandruff, also known as seborrheic dermatitis, is basically flaking of the skin on your scalp. These flakes, called “dandruff scales,” can look dry or oily, white or yellowish in color. Buildup from your hair products such as shampoos can cause dandruff. Other common causes include excessively dry or oily skin or an autoimmune condition like psoriasis. Dandruff usually affects people who are older than the preschool age and is most prevalent in adolescents and young adults. You can’t catch dandruff from other people, but dandruff can be genetic.

In the case of dandruff, it’s simply the dryness of your scalp that causes you to want to scratch your head. In some cases, fungal infections may have led to skin flaking and dryness.  Medicated shampoos are recommended to treat dandruff as these special shampoos are designed to slow the skin-shedding process. It is recommended to look for shampoos with coal tar, salicylic acid, ketoconazole, or selenium sulfide.

Head lice, on the other hand, are contagious bugs – sometimes referred to as head lice louse or insects. If one member of your household becomes affected, the chances are pretty good that other family members are also affected. Head lice can crawl and spread through close contact with others or by crawling onto clothing, bedding, towels, or combs and then onto someone’s head. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), twelve million children are affected every year, mostly preschoolers and elementary school-aged children. That is a huge number of households needing head lice removal services to get rid of those unwanted little parasites.

The itchy feeling you get with a head lice infestation is caused by the insects’ saliva. As the head louse feeds on human blood, they stay close to the scalp and their saliva causes scalp irritation making you feel itchy. Whereas with dandruff, the itchiness and white specks are annoying and should be attended to at some point, cases of suspected head lice need to be addressed as soon as possible.

Fresh Heads Head Lice Treatment Center is a science-based head lice removal company. The highly trained technicians are skilled at getting rid of lice in one treatment session using the Revolutionary AirAlle Head Lice Machine. Fresh Heads Head Lice Treatment Center is the only single-treatment professional head lice removal company serving Jacksonville, Orlando, and surrounding areas that offers a 45-day guarantee. See the services tab on our website for more information. If you think you might be experiencing a head lice issue in your household, call us today! A Fresh Heads Technician will carefully inspect every hair on the heads in question.