Why Does Seborrheic Dermatitis Flare Up?

Why Does Seborrheic Dermatitis Flare Up?

Why Does Seborrheic Dermatitis Flare Up?


Seborrheic dermatitis is a condition that causes red, scaly, and flaky skin. It can also cause dandruff. Though the exact cause is unknown, it is thought to be related to an overgrowth of a type of yeast that is naturally present on the skin. Seborrheic dermatitis tends to flare up and then clear up on its own, but it can last for months or even years. There are a number of things that can trigger a flare up, including stress, weather changes, and illness. If you have seborrheic dermatitis, you may be wondering what you can do to prevent flare ups. Here are some tips:

  • Keep your skin clean and dry. Use a mild soap and avoid scrubbing your skin.
  • Don't use harsh chemicals or fragrances on your skin.
  • Wash your hair often. If you have dandruff, use a shampoo that contains selenium sulfide or zinc pyrithione.
  • Avoid trigger foods. Common trigger foods include chocolate, coffee, and nuts.
  • Manage your stress. Stress can make seborrheic dermatitis worse.
  • See your doctor. If over-the-counter treatments don't work, your doctor may prescribe a stronger medication.


If you have seborrheic dermatitis, following these tips may help you prevent flare ups. However, it's important to remember that everyone is different. What works for one person may not work for another. Talk to your doctor about what you can do to manage your seborrheic dermatitis.

Seborrheic dermatitis is a common and persistent skin condition that causes flaky, oily patches and redness. While the exact cause of seborrheic dermatitis is unknown, it is thought to be related to a combination of hormonal changes, immune system dysfunction, and genetic predisposition. There are a number of factors that can trigger or worsen seborrheic dermatitis flares, including:
  • Stress
  • Hormonal changes (such as during puberty, pregnancy, or menopause)
  • Weather (cold, dry conditions)
  • Certain medical conditions (such as Parkinson’s disease, HIV/AIDS, or certain types of cancer)
  • Certain medications (such as periodontal disease or acne treatments)


If you have seborrheic dermatitis, you may be all too familiar with the frustrating cycle of flares followed by periods of remission. While there is no cure for seborrheic dermatitis, there are a number of things you can do to reduce your flares and improve your skin condition.


Here are some tips:

  • Wash your skin gently with a non-irritating cleanser. Avoid harsh scrubbing or excessive washing, which can worsen seborrheic dermatitis.
  • Apply an anti-dandruff shampoo to your scalp and other affected areas. Be sure to use a shampoo that contains an active ingredient such as ketoconazole, selenium sulfide, or zinc pyrithione.
  • Use a moisturizer to hydrate your skin and reduce flaking. Choose a product that contains ingredients such as glycerin, hyaluronic acid, or dimethicone.
  • Avoid triggers that can worsen your seborrheic dermatitis flares. These triggers may include stress, harsh weather conditions, and certain medications.
  • Talk to your doctor about prescription medications that can help reduce seborrheic dermatitis flares. These medications may include topical corticosteroids, calcineurin inhibitors, or antifungals.

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