How To Treat Scalp Psoriasis and Itchiness

Do you ever notice your scalp condition being intensely itchy? If so, know that you’re not alone. Research shows that as many as 25% of people report an itchy scalp. This common problem affects scalp health and causes discomfort and irritation. These symptoms may also indicate an underlying condition, such as scalp psoriasis. Although there is no cure for psoriasis, scalp treatment is available to reduce the severity of your symptoms. Our goal at SumLabs is to help minimize the frequency and severity of your itchy head psoriasis flare-ups. This will require both proactive measures and topical symptom management.

Here’s what you need to know.

Why Is My Head Itchy?

An itchy head can be tough to diagnose. However, staying mindful of your symptoms can help you better understand the potential cause. When you know the cause, you can better address the associated symptoms.

Scalp Psoriasis and Thinning Hair

Although the most common cause of an itchy scalp is seborrheic dermatitis, other common culprits include:

  • Dandruff
  • Lice
  • Poor hair care practices, such as not properly rinsing shampoo
  • Hives
  • Atopic dermatitis is a form of eczema that affects the scalp
  • Scalp psoriasis

What Is Scalp Psoriasis?

Determining the cause of your itchy scalp can be challenging, but itchy head psoriasis is often blamed on those with psoriasis on their body.

  • Approximately 50% of people who suffer from plaque psoriasis on their bodies also develop symptoms on their scalp. That means that approximately 3.75 million Americans experience symptoms on their scalp. 
  • Some estimates are even higher, reporting that of those affected with psoriasis, up to 80% will have symptoms on their scalp.

This common skin condition causes redness, dryness, scalp irritation, and scaly patches to form on your scalp. Each case differs in terms of severity. You can experience a single patch or several patchy areas, or your entire scalp may be affected. Depending on your symptoms, intense itching and irritation can affect your sleep and quality of life.

Psoriasis is a chronic condition and can develop at any age. It is often described as a physically and psychologically debilitating disease. Over time, scalp psoriasis patients recognize their condition’s impact on quality of life. (make it bold)

How Do I Know If I Have Scalp Psoriasis?

Symptoms of scalp psoriasis vary. You may experience only mild scaling. However, you may also have more moderate-to-severe symptoms, including:

  • Red, bump patches
  • Flaking/dandruff
  • Dry scalp
  • Burning sensation
  • Itching

Scalp psoriasis doesn’t cause hair loss. However, scratching often, picking, harsh treatments, and stress can lead to temporary hair loss.

What Causes Scalp Psoriasis?

Much like other types of psoriasis, researchers aren’t exactly sure what causes it. Many health experts believe issues with your immune system may play a role. That is why psoriasis is often referred to as an autoimmune disease within the medical community.

Something may potentially go wrong with your immune system, causing skin cells to grow too quickly. These cells develop into patches as newly produced skin cells force out existing cells.

It’s important to note that you cannot catch itchy head psoriasis from someone else or give it to others. However, this condition may have a genetic component, as you are more likely to get scalp psoriasis if someone in your family has it. Approximately one-third of those diagnosed with psoriasis have a relative with this condition.

  • If one of your parents has psoriasis, you have a 10% chance of experiencing symptoms.
  • If both parents have psoriasis, your risk goes up to 50%

Most people living with psoriasis experience outbreaks that flare up and subside. 

Risk factors of Scalp Psoriasis

Some of the factors that may increase your risk of an outbreak or flare-up include:

  • Stress
  • Cold, dry weather
  • Withdrawal of corticosteroids
  • Certain medications, including beta-blockers
  • HIV

How Is Scalp Psoriasis Treated?

There isn’t a cure for scalp psoriasis. However, there are several ways you can better manage your symptoms. The best treatment for your itchy head psoriasis will depend on various factors, including:

  • How severe are your symptoms?
  • How have your symptoms responded to treatments in the past?
  • Whether you have psoriasis in other areas of your body?
  • Whether you suffer from other skin conditions?
  • How much hair do you have?

The most common treatments for those living with mild scalp psoriasis will be topical medications such as shampoos and creams. For those with severe psoriasis, medications that treat your whole body may be required. For scalp psoriasis, you must use a shampoo that helps to relieve scaling and itchiness. 

Investing in a shampoo for skin conditions such as psoriasis is a good idea.

Summer Laboratories Can Help

At Summer Laboratories, we specialize in skincare solutions for your entire family. We are experts in quality skincare, offering products that soothe everything from psoriasis to acne, dry skin to eczema.

If you are suffering from scalp psoriasis, we recommend a core product.

Tarsum® Relief Shampoo

This is the only psoriasis shampoo designed to be applied full-strength before you bathe. This formulation also helps treat seborrheic dermatitis and severe dandruff. Being the only therapeutic shampoo that can be applied before bathing, Tarsum® allows you to maximize treatment time. Using the shampoo’s special applicator tip, you can treat your scalp more easily than your hair.

Learn more about Tarsum® Relief Shampoo.

Browse our collection of skincare products to target another skin condition.



  • Michael Reed

    Michael Reed is a medical writer at Sumlab, focusing on dermatological studies and treatments. His articles help demystify complex clinical results for a broad audience.

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