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Anon asked...

I have an itchy scalp which I frequently scratch...

I have an itchy scalp which I frequently scratch and I've noticed a small round patch of missing hair at the back of my head where I scratch a lot is this normal?

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The answer

Thank you for your question.

It is unclear from your question how long you have been having this issue with itchy scalp and related hair loss to the area. In some incidents, it can be like the chicken & egg scenario, as in which came first, the itching or the hair loss.

Most people develop an itchy scalp area at some point. This can be down to products you may be using on your hair which may be irritating your scalp. Initially you may want to try to try and change your hair cleansing products to a milder brand, or perfume free, to see if this will reduce the irritation.

In your case the issue may have been made worse by regular scratching of the area, and therefore contributing to the area being more agitated with the scratching motion, and therefore during the healing process on the scalp it may feel itchier.

This can create a constant inability for the area to fully repair itself. With regular friction to a specific area on the scalp, hair loss may then be the result.

Initially it may be suggested to try and stop this cycle by applying some practical pointers.

  • When the itching occurs, try not to scratch the area. Practical ways of assisting with this is to try and focus on something at this time to prevent the scratching occurring.
  • If there is no broken skin to the area, apply a topical cream or solution which will treat the itchy skin condition, such as an Aloe Vera gel, or mild oil based product (possibly Olive Oil or Coconut Oil). Try and choose something that will assist the dryness of the healing skin, therefore reducing the itchiness and therefore the need to scratch the area.
  • If you can treat the area with one of the above methods, therefore reducing the dryness & itchiness to the area, you should see an improvement of the hair growth within the area.
  • If symptoms persist, and you find that these methods are not helping, then please seek the advice f your GP for further.

We have included a link below which you may find useful for further reading. This may highlight any other symptoms that you may find you are also experiencing. As discussed, constant on going issues should be discussed with your GP.

Hair loss - NHS

We hope this has been of some help to you.

Answered by the Health at Hand nurses