Dandruff in kids: All you want to know about it


Dandruff is the most common issue in kids and adults that they face. Let us talk about dandruff in kids. Kids consistently get exposed to heat and dust when they go to school, at home or when they play in the playground. All these activities lead to dryness of the skin in the kid’s scalp, which may lead to dandruff. But, this is not the only reason why kids also get dandruff. Let us discuss it in detail and know more about what dandruff is? and how to get rid of it?

Dandruff in kids
Dandruff in kids

What is dandruff?

Dandruff is another type of Seborrheic dermatitis that is most common in kids, teenagers, and adults. Dandruff is basically dead skin that is found in the person’s hair or skin. The skin becomes very dry and results in white or yellow flakes, itchiness, and redness. Dandruff can also happen on other oily areas of the body like eyebrows, eyelids, underarms, ears, belly button, and other parts of the body. Sometimes dandruff can cause redness in the affected area and can itch really bad. Dandruff can also lead to hair loss in kids and adults. Severe infestation of dandruff can also lead to inflammation of the skin in the scalp. Dandruff is not contagious and can be controlled by regular shampooing with a mild shampoo.

Cause of dandruff in kids

The exact cause of dandruff in kids or adults is still unknown. Some people believe that dandruff is caused by the over secretion of sebum by the oil glands. When the area remains too oily, a type of yeast called Malassezia can grow along with other bacteria and lead to infection in the skin, which causes dryness, flaky skin, and itching. But, there can be other external factors also that can lead to dandruff in kids. Here is the list of these factors. 

  • Improper shampooing
  • Sensitivity to hair products
  • Lack of nutrition
  • Malassezia
  • Seborrheic dermatitis

Improper shampooing

Sometimes when we wash our kids’ hair, the dead skin cells that are supposed to get removed, do not get rinsed out properly due to improper washing. This causes the accumulation of dead cells on the kids’ heads and leads to dryness and dandruff in the kids’ heads. 

Sensitivity to hair products

The hair products that you may be using, may not be suitable for your kid. That is the reason, you should first apply the product to a small area of your kids’ skin and wait for 24 hours to see if a kid gets any allergy on the skin or not. If this is the reason, then you should consult your pediatrician and then change the products that you are using for your kids.

Lack of nutrition

The kids always prefer to eat junk food compared to healthy food. Also, the kids are always in a hurry to go to play. They tend to eat half meal and then leave it unfinished. Which leads to malnutrition and dry skin and dandruff. 


It is a fungal growth, which increases with the presence of warmth and dampness in the body parts due to sweat and heat. This leads to disturbance in the normal growth of cells and leads to dandruff and scalp itching. Hormonal changes or certain illness in kids leads to the growth of this fungi and in turn the growth of hormones. 

Seborrheic dermatitis

Dandruff is a milder form of seborrheic dermatitis, a kind of eczema that leads to the inflammation of the scalp skin. If dandruff gets converted into eczema then it is not easy to get it treated and you need to take the doctor’s advice. 

Symptoms of dandruff in kids

These are some of the symptoms of dandruff in children that you should look for in a kid’s hair. The most common symptoms include dry and itchy scalp. The kid’s scalp may become inflamed and sore due to constant scratching. The other symptoms include 

  • Visible dry flakes on your kid’s scalp.
  • Continuous itching on the scalp
  • Red patches on the scalp are caused by itching and dandruff.

Usually, dandruff is irritating to the scalp and causes itching. But, does not cause any major harm to the scalp. But, in severe cases of eczema, psoriasis, or Malassezia you need to consult a doctor.

Treatment for dandruff in kids

Usually, you can treat dandruff by washing the kid’s hair with medicated shampoo twice a week and maintaining hygiene and cleanliness. 

Using a medicated shampoo

The medicated shampoo usually should contain chemicals like 2% ketoconazole, selenium sulfide, and coal tar

Proper nutrition

The kids should eat a nutritious full meal. The protein, carbohydrates, and other nutrients present in the food help children to have healthier scalp and hair.

Using separate combs and towels

You should use a separate comb and towel for the kids and other family members. There are chances that the kid might not have dandruff, but may get it from someone else in the family or other family members might get it from the kid. 

Keeping hydrated

Your kids should keep themselves hydrated. Drinking a lot of water can reduce the kid’s dandruff. If the kid does not drink water then you should make them drink measured portions of water or juice regularly and keep them well hydrated. 

Brushing your kid’s hair before shampoo

Brushing your kid’s hair after shampooing and before rinsing the shampoo off might reduce the dandruff flakes and help in the reduction of the problem.

Do not apply any harmful hair products

Kids’ hair is very delicate and needs to be taken care of properly. So, you should not apply any harmful chemicals like hair dye, gels, or other products to kids’ hair. 

Medicated shampoo that you can use for Dandruff in kids

There are some very good medicated shampoos available on market for children. Here is the list of those shampoos

Dr. Eddy’s Happy Cappy Medicated Shampoo for kids

Dr. Eddy's Happy Cappy Medicated Shampoo for dandruff in kids
Dr. Eddy’s Happy Cappy Medicated Shampoo
  • This shampoo fights itching, scaling, redness, and dryness on the kid’s scalp.
  • It is the first over-the-counter shampoo and body wash with active ingredients pyrithione zinc for children of all ages.
  • Has been proven effective against dandruff in kids.
  • Helps soothe redness behind ears, under armpits, and in neck folds.
  • The shampoo eliminates flakes and dry skin while leaving the hair soft and smooth. 
  • You can get the best results after washing the kid’s hair for 1 to 2 weeks. 




You can purchase it from here.

HoneyDew Nourishing kids shampoo for dry scalp

Honey Dew kids Nourishing Shampoo
Honey Dew Kids Nourishing Shampoo
  • The shampoo tackles dry scalp to remove the flakes and can help nourish the scalp with natural ingredients.
  • Shampoo is paraben and sulfate free.
  • It contains moisturising jojoba oil and keratin.
  • The other natural ingredients include tea tree oil, argan oil, and Lavender oil.
  • These natural ingredients help nourish the kids scalp and prevent the growth of dandruff.




You can purchase it from here.

Babo Botanicals 2-in-1 shampoo and body wash

Babo Botanicals 2-in-1 nourishing shampoo
Babo Botanicals 2-in-1 nourishing shampoo
  • The 2-in-1 shampoo and bodywash gently cleanses the scalp and skin of the baby’s body and moisturizes the scalp and the skin.
  • It contains natural oats, proteins, shea and cocoa butter to help the skin and hair rejuvenate their softness.
  • Gentle enough to be used every day.




You can purchase it from here.

So, this is all that I wanted to share with you guys about Dandruff in kids, how to treat it, and which products to use. If you know of any other ways do let us know in the comments section below.

Himali Parikh
Himali Parikhhttps://momabc.net
Himali is Parenting Blogger and founder of MomABC.net. She had done M.S in Molecular biology from University of New Haven (US) and was working with various Pharma companies. She had started this motherhood and baby care blog for helping other mothers.

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