A third of people avoid social situations due to uncontrolled dandruff, reveals anonymous survey

Anonymous survey respondents reveal that a third of people avoid social situations as a result of uncontrolled dandruff

A third of people admitted to avoiding social situations as a result of emotional distress caused by their dandruff, according to new survey results released today by the British Skin Foundation(BSF) in conjunction with the world’s no. 1 anti-dandruff shampoo, Head & Shoulders (H&S).

The anonymous online survey of more than350 people - 65% who suffered from dandruff and 35% who did not - set out to uncover the emotional impact of,and pinpoint specificanxieties behind,the common scalpcondition. Up to half of the population will suffer from dandruff or its more severe form, seborrheic dermatitis, at some point in their lives.

Speaking on the survey findings, Dr Anjali Mahto, Consultant Dermatologist & British Skin Foundation Spokesperson, commented:

Dandruff and seborrhoeic dermatitis are extremely common skin conditions, suffered by up to half the population at some point in their lives.  This study very clearly demonstrates that poor scalp health can negatively impact quality of life and self-esteem.

These survey results come at the same time as Procter & Gamble (P&G) prepare to presentnew data on dandruffat the prestigious 23rd World Congress of Dermatology (WCD) in June,which showfor the first time that lifetime protection from dandruff is possible with regular use of Head and Shoulders. The researchalso demonstrated the role that oxidative stress from environmental ‘stressors’ such as heat, sweat, and pollution play in amplifying scalp surface stress and dandruff aetiology.

Discussing thelatest clinical findings, Dr Jim Schwartz, Head & Shoulders research fellow, commented:

Dandruff is a complex condition and we have been working to unravel the causes, as well as the physiological effects in scalp skin that lead to the common symptoms of flakes, itch and dryness. Our findings show that the metabolic by-products of resident Malassezia scalp yeasts can be chemically altered by external factors, causing oxidative stress, which can worsen dandruff symptoms. But by protecting the scalp with a treatment shampoo, we can shield against these environmental stressors, meaning dandruff patients can achieve a symptom-free status.

BSF Dandruff Survey Findings

  • Of those who suffered dandruff:
    • 73% of respondents said it made them feel less attractive
    • One in five claimed that the condition had resulted in them being bullied and receiving verbal abuse
    • 72% of respondents revealed that they had tried to hide their condition from someone in the past; citing friends, partners, potential partners and even employees in particular

Commenting on the survey results, Dr Alex Clarke, Visiting Professor in Appearance and Clinical Psychology at the Centre for Appearance research, University of the West of England, said:

People tend to think of dandruff as a physical manifestation in terms of itch, flakes and dryness - but these answers demonstrate that it also creates asignificant psychological burden for the individual. Being confident in your appearance can be one of the key drivers of positive self-esteem, and feeling embarrassed or self-consciousabout how you lookcan limit your willingness to participate in normal social activitiesandlive life to the full.

Since the 1950s, P&G scientists have invested in pioneering research to further understanding of the skin, to enable the creation of products for the skin that are grounded in scientific innovation. In recent years P&G have focused on unlocking the understanding of how the skin, our largest organ, interacts with key environmental factors(such as pollution and UV) and how best to combat these effects through continued skincare innovation.

Currently, facial skin is undoubtedly the main focus of research in understanding the impact of environmental factors. However, despite being millimetres from the face, scalp skin is often overlooked. Results from these clinical studies call for a greater focus on protecting the facial skin from pollution, and protecting scalp skin from environmental stressors, which can have a significant impact on skin health. P&G have matched scientific understanding with product innovation with Head & Shoulders, as it helps to deliver total scalp health and defends against external aggressors that can aggravate the dandruff condition, ultimately offering sufferers lifetime protection from dandruff with regular use.

Source: http://www.britishskinfoundation.org.uk/


The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of News Medical.
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