What is a sensitive scalp?
The skin is a complete organ that contains nerve fibers and neuromediators. This enables us to feel itching, tingling and tightness, especially on the scalp, which is rich in nerve endings. These symptoms can be an indication of a scalp disease (hair loss, dandruff condition, dermatosis). However, when these symptoms appear in an isolated manner, they are defined as sensitive scalp.
Sensitive scalp is characterized by a group of unpleasant sensations related to the sensitive skin syndrome, the most commonly occurring being pruritus (or itching) which triggers the desire to scratch.
Sensitive scalp is a common clinical reality. An epidemiological study using a questionnaire shows that 44.2% of the French population (47.4% of women) claims to have sensitive scalp.
What causes sensitive scalp?
Itching, tingling and tightness in a sensitive scalp are triggered by several factors:
Heat or cold,
Certain hairstyles (weaves, tight braids)
Unsuitable shampoos ...
Itchy scalp. Why? How?
In 1660, Samuel Haffenreffer defined pruritus or itching as an unpleasant cutaneous sensation that elicits the desire to scratch.
This itching is called "primary" because it is not linked to any disorder that triggers itching of the scalp. It also requires adapted, specific treatment.
Itching (or pruritus) is one of the most common symptoms of sensitive scalp. It is reported by more than 38% of people in France who claim to have a sensitive scalp.
The scalp is highly innervated: there are approximately 600 nerve endings per cm² of skin. These nerve endings are found in the skin (the dermis and the epidermis) and are activated by stimuli such as heat, cold, mechanical pressure, etc. These stimuli are perceived as external aggression by a person suffering from sensitive scalp. The message produced and sent to the central nervous system is transcribed in the brain in the form of sensory perception. Itching, tightness, tingling and burning are all sensations that trigger the urge to scratch the scalp.
All conditions require the help of a health professional for diagnosis and treatment