Pain or tenderness over scalp
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Pain or tenderness over scalp

Scalp tenderness is a condition that results in pain and sensitivity in the scalp. It can be caused by a variety of factors, such as injuries, infections, and autoimmune diseases. Insect bites, wounds, rashes, and sunburns also cause scalp tenderness. The majority of the cases resolve with medications or on their own, however, some remain as symptoms of the underlying condition. Scalp sensitivity is caused when blood vessels of the scalp's skin press the nearby nerves and are inflamed. Continue reading to know what causes scalp tenderness and how to treat them. 

What are the symptoms of scalp pain or tenderness?

If you are undergoing burning sensation, scaling, or pain on the scalp, it means you are having a chronic condition or an infection. Some of the common symptoms of scalp tenderness include:

  • Pain or tenderness on the scalp
  • Burning sensation on the scalp
  • Itching on the scalp
  • Severe dandruff
  • Dry skin on the scalp
  • Swelling on the scalp 

What are the causes of scalp pain or tenderness?

Scarring Alopecia is a form of alopecia (hair loss) that results in permanent hair loss. Scarring alopecia is caused by damage to the hair follicle, which can be the result of physical or chemical injury, infection, or autoimmune disease. The damaged hair follicle becomes replaced by scar tissue, which prevents new hair from growing. The most common form of scarring alopecia is follicular degeneration syndrome, which affects the scalp, eyebrows, and eyelashes.  

Other forms of scarring alopecia include discoid lupus erythematosus, lichen planopilaris, and frontal fibrosing alopecia. Scarring alopecia is a relatively rare condition, affecting less than 1% of the population. However, it can be very debilitating, causing a significant amount of emotional distress. There is no cure for scarring alopecia, but treatment options are available to help slow the progression of hair loss, minimize scalp pain or tenderness, and improve the appearance of the affected areas.

What are the treatment options for scalp pain or tenderness?

Scalp tenderness and hair loss can be treated with corticosteroid injections or topical medications.Oral and topical medications: If the scalp pain is mild, your doctor may recommend over-the-counter oral medications such as ibuprofen or aspirin. If the pain is more severe, your doctor may prescribe a stronger medication. In addition, your doctor may recommend a topical cream or ointment to help relieve the pain and inflammation. The doctor may start with mild medication and increase the dosage if needed. The scalp tenderness treatment differs for each case as it could be due to several factors. Medicated conditions, rinses, washes, or shampoos are mostly helpful in treating scalp tenderness. 

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