Though everyone may have a slightly different view of what severe dandruff may be, it should be sufficient to say that it is a condition that is minimally responsive to traditional courses of treatment. Those treatments vary from using dandruff shampoo available over the counter to changes in diet. Even stress reduction techniques can be tried. If none of these work, then the case is severe enough to seek the help of a dermatologist.
Most of the time, a dermatologist may simply recommend trying various other over-the-counter treatments, such as a particular dandruff shampoo, before moving on to more drastic measures. If typical dandruff remedies do not work, then a medical professional may recommend an anti-fungus shampoo, usually one that contains ketoconazole. Such shampoos used to only be available with a prescription, but they are now available without one. The reason to use anti-fungal shampoo to treat severe dandruff is due to the fact that some believe fungus plays a contributing role, if not a major role, in the condition. Many people experience favorable results, which seems to reinforce the belief.
In some cases, when dandruff is particularly bad, a steroid cream, such as hydrocortisone, may be used. These steroids will only treat symptoms, such as scaling, itching and flaking, and will do little to nothing to treat the underlying problem. As such, those using those creams could get used to the symptoms being eliminated, even though the problem remains. Further, steroids can only be used for a limited time because such creams can thin the skin, creating additional medical problems.
For those adults who do have severe dandruff, the reality is that the condition is often chronic. This condition can be controlled, but it sometimes cannot be cured. As a result, even with the advancements that have been made in controlling dandruff, some control measures will likely be necessary the rest of a person's life.
In most cases, there is no one answer for treating severe dandruff. Several hair care products may be beneficial and are often rotated in an effort to make sure the dandruff does not become resistant to a single product. While the itching is persistent, the good news is with simple treatment every few days, it can usually be suppressed enough to make the individual comfortable.