For the past two years, I have what feel and appear to be like grains of sand on my scalp. They seem to be "attached" to the base of the hair shafts, but when I massage my scalp gently with my fingertips, they come off. My scalp has 100s of them. If I scratch my head, the itching sensation is INTENSE, and I try never to scratch my scalp. If I do give in, and scrape a few dozen of them off, I can get them out form under my fingernails (gross, I know), and they look like grains of sugar or sand. They are hard like grains of sand. You can not "squish" them.
They are not lice...my husband is an RN, and he has looked at my scalp many times, and we are certain of this. The dermatologists I have seen also tell me they are not lice, but seem to be unconcerned, and give me no suggestions of how to stop them or the itching, except to use dandruff shampoo - which does absolutely nothing.
You can see more details of exactly what all of us (over 70 posts at that link) are going through - very similar to exact same stories. They are not flake-like at all. Any suggestions would be appreciated, thanks in advance. We are all looking for answers to this mystery, and would love to hear some new ideas. So far, suggestions have been Morgellons disease, White piedra, Demodex folliculorum, and the one I lean towards: seborrheic dermatitis. However, not being FLAKES seems to rule the last one out!? Help?
In the original journal post I referenced at the top of this thread there is a post someone made about a balding treatment, and at their website I found this info:
"Q: A lot of hard granules come out when I do treatment. They are like small grains of sand. Is this normal?
A: The hard, sand like granules are DHT crystals. With many balding persons there are waxy granules and hard granules under the scalp. The hard granules vary in size and colour. They can be as large as 1mm wide (see image, click to enlarge) and vary in colour from clear to brown to black. Many balding persons have literally thousands of these hard granules under the scalp! The hard granules in the image were collected from one client in just two treatment sessions"
Great! Now I am AFRAID I AM GOING BALD!!! Has anyone heard of these? A search for DHT crystals on MedHelp came up blank.
is it possible that you might fall under this category? http://*****************/question/index?qid=20100122170531AAf3DhQ
Also this other site offered some suggestions:
Everyone who suffers from itchy scalp, constant rummaging around on it with your fingernails searching for sandy grains to pluck them out, and losing a lot of hair in the shower, and during brushing, and combing, should use Johnson's BABY SHAMPOO. After one use, its like brand new scalp. Also, when conditioning, limit that to twice a week. I did not condition my scalp, just the ends of my hair, when using baby shampoo.
I have been to the doctors twice and they wanted to tell me I was allergic to something from suffering for 2 years from this condition.
Well at least I finally see I am not the only person with this. MY doctor told me to buy head and shoulders and put it on my head with my hair dry and let it soak in and then finally wash and rinse! Don't ever do that! I had one heck of a time getting the shampoo out. But I did find a shampoo that is for Psoriasis even though this isn't that disease I thought I'd give it a whirl and it really helps !!! I am out of it right now and I forget the name of it but you can get it in Kmart or Walmart. They now have it with conditioner in it but I don't like that one. It is a little expensive but well worth it. Good luck!!
I used equal parts vinegar and water on my hair applying it with a squeeze bottle and let it sit in for 20 mins. I have long hair and strategically applied the liquid as evenly as i could everywhere. Seems like the build up on my scalp almost melted with the acidic mixture because at one point it almost felt like I had conditioner in my hair, it was so slick. The first time I did it, I found immediate results. The 2nd time I did it, my scalp dried out too much and became tight and itchy starting the cycle all over again. I'm not going to give up as the vinegar is the only treatment I found with quick results, plus it's vinegar. Does get any cheaper or available. Anyways, this is still a work in progress but wanted to share my experience this far for anyone wanted to try it out.
I have been sooo tempted to shave my head completely and slough off my scalp with a black towel just to get a visual on what's going on under my hair but my husband would most likely object. :)
I too have been suffering from this. It all started back in 2008/9 it first started happening or I notiticed it more when I used a really cheap shampoo. I tried biologe shampoos for dandrif but it did nothing. So I just dealt with it. It did get better after a will. It then came back. Usually comes at times of stress. I just read a comment above about it having something to do with gallbladder. Last year I went to the hospital for a cold and they ended up finding that I had gal stones but nothing to worry the doctor said they were small. But NW I am wondering if. This has anything to do with it. I am somewhat over weight from having kids and have not been able to lose this weight. When this did start it was also the point in my life I was the heaviest. I have not been to the doctor about this. I did one time put baby oil in my hair and then washed it out with baby shampoo..this did help alitle but then it can back. Not sure what to do! Hope we all can resolve this!
It's something to do with mixing acids and bases. Shampoo is acidic, conditioner is basic and is supposed to neutralize it but your scalp is naturally acidic ( pH of 5) the granular build up is the by product of the neutralizing. Salt maybe? That's why you are only supposed to put conditioner on your ends. Try washing your hair in diluted apple cider vinegar to restore the pH and remove the buildup. Skip the conditioner entirely for a bit and it will clear up.
I'm not sure if its the same thing, but while searching the internet for what is going on with my scalp (same problem as everyone else here) I read about DHT. I drink a daily protein drink so I was thinking maybe the "sand" was excess protein or some other vitamin, this is what I read "some non-organic shakes have ingredients like creatine, which increases muscle mass. Ingredients that increase muscle mass, like these, also raise testosterone levels. When there is high testosterone, there can be high levels of DHT which can contribute to hair loss".
I have this same problem, but i was able to "squish" the granules between 2 glass slides. I work in a diagnostic lab. When I looked at the "squished" granules under the microscope, it was nothing more than a large ball of squamous cell epithelials (normal skin cells).
this is solution.
my sand like practce totaly gone away. i used keto plus shampoo.beclomin lotion.and one srilankan shampoo/bath every day.but hair is falling yet.my skin is dryness.this is some dandreff/dwndreff can flareup any day.so you use this regulary/ my e mail ***@****
I couldn`t wait to get back to others w/this horrible itchy problem. I couldn`t remember exactly what I had read, searching all over the internet about this. But, I was grocery shopping and remembered VINEGAR. Wasn`t sure but bought Apple Cider Vinegar. Was too anxious to look process up so washed my hair - shampooed twice - rinsed again, then poued the vinegarr full strength from the bottle over my head (duh, some got in eyes, had to grab a towel and splash water on my eyes). As I have aged, gray,dyed, tangled hair, I did put conditioner half-way to ends. Wrapped w/towel and let it do it`s job, then rinsed. SO GLAD TO BE ABLE TO TELL YOU - IT FREAKIN` WORKED!!!! I know I will have to do this for awhile to make sure but what a feeling to not SCRATCH!!! and itch out those horrifying white balls! Since, I have read `Floris`s` article in `AMAZINGLY .com` magazine. I HIGHLY recommend it. It`s a fungus. He has done GREAT research and this article will set ya on a great, and more correct I imagine, regimen. I am so HAPPY already. Good Luck to all of you! I sure hope it works for you!
I WOULD love to see how its going my scalp and hair is just like that i have tried everything i hope you get back to me about how long to leave vinegar on and etc i hope it is still working my scalp is driving me crazy 3 yrs
thank you debbie
Hi, I think I know what it is, and it's one of two things - as I get it, but it's not massively itchy...
It's either salt crystals that come out of my follicles (usually only after I use a shampoo with SLS - if you try a sulfate free shampoo you'll notice those crystals disappear!)
Or it's KERATINOSIS - which I also suffer from. If you read up on KP, you can see if affects people that suffer from Exczema (eczema), and very common. So those little grains are probably little plugs of keratin that come out from your hair follicle.
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