Effective Natural Remedies for Seborrheic Dermatitis Relief - Ted's Q&A

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Severe Seborrheic Dermatitis and Hair Loss

Posted by Scott on 10/30/2007

Hello Ted, I have been reading many of your posts on Earth Clinic regarding seborrheic dermatitis/dandruff and hair loss and I must say I am impressed, however I am at a loss as to what may help me...... I know you are a busy guy but I plead with you to please somehow find the time to get back to me =)..It would be so greatly appreciated.. I have had a very severe case of seborrheic dematitis and severe hair loss for 7 years now. I have been to 16 doctors, naturopathic, allopathic, and homeopathic with little to no help..I have seemingly tried everything... Let me give you a quick background first...I was seemingly healthy all my life (up till 7 years ago after taking Accutane) although I had acne on my back I could not get rid of so I went to my dermatologist and was prescribed Tetrycicline and Minocycline antiboitics for many many months but they did not help...Then out of desparation I made a huge mistake, I took Accutane, a horrible drug for acne...I only took it for about 1-2 months but stopped due to massive hair loss..I went back to my dermatologist (I now have NO faith at all in any dermatologists or M.D.'s- they seem to be very uneducated) and he said the Accutane was not causing the hair loss (which I now know that is not true - it is for sure what caused it), and suggested trying Rogaine...I tried Rogaine, which was huge mistake #2...A mixture of Rogaine right after Accutane caused very severe scalp damage and hair loss (later learned Rogaine is not to be taken from hair loss caused by a drug)...I have had a very thick crusted scalp (seborrheic derm) ever since covering about 90% of my scalp (thickest on crown area) from front to back, and it is very deep causing severe hair loss due to large chunks of skin coming off my scalp.....My skin used to burn from head to toe for about the first 3-4 years after Accutane/Rogaine also, but thank goodness it doesnt burn much anymore...

Unfortunately I did not know about natural remedies for acne but I am trying not to look back on this horrible experience, only forward on how to get better... My naturopaths I have been to took many many tests...Fortunately, my liver did not seem to be damaged...however, I found I have severe allergies to all dairy, and have not eaten dairy for a very long time...this still has not helped the condition...I had Candida/Yeast stool tests and they came out Non-pathogen however, "Rare Budding Yeast" was present (not sure if budding yeast can cause this scalp condition but in the summary from Genova Diagnostics it says it "could contribute to symptoms in susceptible individuals, e.g. reduced immune function, deficient beneficial bacteria, or fungal allergy")...I also tested NEGATIVE for "leaky gut"...I thought since Seborrhea is a type of yeast, that for sure I had Candida and that it was leaking out of my gut into my bloodstream, then to my vulnerable scalp...but apparently this is still not the cause? ..I have tried seemingly every herb, colon cleanses, liver cleanses, homeopathic preparations, efa's, vitamins, minerals, nutrients, tea tree oil, strict diets, etc...I tried your suggestion on ACV and Hydrogen peroxide mixture and sprayed it on my scalp (seems to burn quite a bit), soaked it, etc, still very little/not much help....Currently I am taking 10 mg Biotin, P73 Oil of Oregano, a Candida/Yeast Cleanse (in case budding yeast is part of the problem), and liquid vitamins/minerals...

I suspect my conditoin has something to do with bacteria, yeast, or some sort of fungus, but probably in my blood because topical solutions don't really seem to help?...I also have learned that Accutane severely depletes nutrients in ones body (but I have supplemented so many nutrients for 7 years and still wondering why I'm not better)..I still have hope though and believe I can be healed given the right remedy =)... ..I have attached some pictures to give you an idea of my condition...

My scalp now looks a little better as far as chunks of skin, however the hair loss is much worse than the pics (my hair just couldn't seem to survive all the trauma/thick flaking)... ...I am interested in trying something you suggest on your hair loss forums although I have tried Zinc/Vitamin C already (but perhaps not at the right dosage), however I would like something more specific for my problem (or at least your opinion)...I have experimented enough on my own to no avail, and am tired of playing the guessing game...hahaha..=)..So what dose would you consider for possibly Vitamin C, Magnesuim, Zinc, Manganese, and perhaps Borax (although reluctant because I don't know much about this remedy and not sure if it is natural)....Or any other suggestions would be so helpful to me...You have no idea how greateful I would be for a regimine that could possibliy reverse this disease... ...Looking forward to your response...take all the time you need to thoughtfully consider this seemingly complicated issue... ..You may post this question on earthlink and edit it if you would like to make it shorter if needed, because I know others who may benifit from it as well.

Replied by Ted
Bangkok, Thailand
391 posts

Dear Scott: You can try the recommendations mentioned, although I would probably try to take plenty of manganese supplements first, such as manganese sulfate, or other manganese such as chelated manganese, some evening primrose oil and make sure the body is sufficient alkalized, such as taking either lemon (or lime) and baking soda, such as 2 tablespoon of lime juice plus 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda in 1/2 glass of water taken at least twice a day. Magnesium in some individuals with hair loss seems to be appropriate, so perhaps, a larger dose such as 250-500 mg of magnesium citrate (or magnesium gluconate or magnesium chloride) with plenty of water seems important too. For some reason or another some people with hair loss seems to have some iodine deficiency as noted with hair mineral analysis, in case you do it, there is some pattern to indicate that, but that is done on like using it as a mouthwash, adding in 1/2 glass of water 2-5 drops once in the morning. Manganese still is most important and I think vitamin C sodium ascorbate and alkalization are right close to that.

While the condition can have several causes, your condition based on your feedback may not be a fungus or yeast otherwise it would have responded to the hydrogen peroxide 1% or the saturated borax in hydrogen peroxide 1%, at least initially. Hence the other cause may either be bacteria, mineral and vitamin deficiency or hormonal problems. Magnesium, manganese, iodine and vitamin C is one possibility.

But it would seem that I would need to consider whether there is any other mineral uptake from supplements. The only way to be sure, is to chew on the mineral supplements. A copper chloride weak solution (which means a copper chloride less 1% dissolved in 99% water) applied to the scalp would be an antifungal and react with the body's protein to become a copper peptide.

An interesting healing of the scalp may be possible with even an aloe vera (high concentration) applied topically. The active substance of aloe vera I suspect is the allantoin that allows some scalp to recover.

The real hair losses and the conditions you mentioned, does not appear to be a generic seborrheic dermatitis, and hence the problems of the treatment.

It appears to be an Accutane that causes sebeorrheic dermatitis which is why the scalp is so unresponsive to many treatments. Would be nice if you have mentioned to me earlier that the Accutane and Rogaine (or Regaine) was causing the seborrheic hair loss condition. It helps to know the cause. Your cause, in my opinion is a bacteria and Accutane, with possible mineral deficiencies, namely zinc. The reason is that Accutane was designed to kill the bacteria and kill off the body's sebum (which naturally would cause hair loss). Too much or no sebum, either way is related to hair growth since sebum works together with the hair or at least found along with it.

Furthermore, I would look and examine how Accutane and Rogaine caused the hair loss in the first place. The ingredients of accutane is the isoretinoin.

The active ingredients of accutane listed is isoretinoin and the problem inactive ingredients that I worry about is BHA (not BHT), hydrogenated oils, and iron oxide food coloring. I isoretinoin to be a dangerous chemical that induces oxidative DNA damage, and there are literature to say that since it causes birth defects too.

The reason why isoretinion works is it works by killing off the sebum, reducing its production and killing off the acne. The problem about this is it causes extreme scalp drying and kill off the sebum, you kill the hair too since the hair needs sebum, without which to lubricate would cause hair to dry or can no longer form. Isoretinoin also causes the body to go into hyperlipidemia, please see research abstract below. That is because once the sebum is destroyed (just my opinion), the body has no way of getting rid of the oils, so it increases inside the body which leads to oil rancidity, such as oxidation of isoretinoin and other oils, which is toxic to the body, but might be food for the bacteria, which leads to more hair losses.

Therefore, there is two possible addition to reduce this problem namely one tablespoon of granulated lecithin taken two times a day, vitamin E 400 i.u. a day, and if it is not working out 250-500 mg every other day of BHT supplements, to reduce the oxidative effects of the oils. The other oils that need to reduce is the triglycerides and free fatty acids. Therefore 1000-3000 mg of trimethylglycine and glycine may be helpful also. If liver is effected due to hyperlipidemia than 500 mg of N Acetyl Cysteine. The glycine reduces free fatty acids. Methylated glycine may also be more useful, but if cannot be obtained than glycine would do. Lecithin by the way is a fat emulsifiers, and reduces the body's hyperlipidemia.

As to the damaged DNA, little can be done if it is damaged except to provide the supplements for DNA repair. Lacking time right now, I would consider brwer's yeast, since it is rich in RNA/DNA, usually 1000-3000 mg.


As a side note, high fatty foods and sugar should be avoided altogether. It may worsen the condition except only occasional supplements of evening primrose oil and fish oil (such as twice weekly), 500 mg for example. Vitamin Complex will help some of the sugar problems as well as lecithin by reducing some fatty buildup in the liver. "

Isotretinoin and serum lipids: studies on fatty acid, apolipoprotein and intermediary metabolism M.F. LAKER*, C. GREEN1, A.K.M.J. BHUIYAN* AND S. SHUSTER1

1Department of Dermatology, University of Newcastle upon Tyne, U.K.*Department of Clinical Biochemistry and Metabolic Medicine, University of Newcastle upon Tyne, U.K. Dr M.F.Laker, Department of Clinical Biochemistry, University of Newcastle upon Tyne, Newcastle upon Tyne NE2 4HH, U.K. SUMMARY

Thirteen patients with severe acne were treated for 16 weeks with 1·0 mg/kg/day isotretinoin. There were significant increases in serum cholesterol (P < 0·02), triglycerides (P < 0·02) and apolipoprotein B (P < 0·02). No changes were found in serum apolipoprotein A-1, non-esterified fatty acids (NEFA), carnitine, lactate, pyruvate, glycerol, alanine, beta-hydroxy-butyrate, glucose or insulin.

We therefore found no evidence that the hyperlipidaemia of isotretinoin therapy is due to increased fluxes of NEFA from adipose tissue to the liver, although we cannot exclude the possibility that there are changes in the proportion of NEFA being esterified to triglyceride or undergoing beta-oxidation. We suggest that the hyperlipidaemia induced by isotretinoin may be due to an increase in circulating lipoprotein from increased production or impaired catabolism.