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Health Questions

Dry hair

Alternative Names

Hair - dry

Considerations

Dry hair is hair that does not have enough moisture and oil to maintain its normal sheen and texture.

Causes

Home Care

  • Shampoo less frequently -- perhaps only once or twice a week
  • Add conditioners
  • Avoid blow drying and harsh styling products

When to Contact a Medical Professional

Call your health care provider if:

  • Your hair does not improve with gentle treatment
  • You have hair loss
  • You have any other unexplained symptoms

What to Expect at Your Office Visit

Your doctor will perform a physical examination and may ask the following questions:

  • Has your hair always been slightly dry?
  • When did the unusual hair dryness first start?
  • Is it always present, or is it off and on?
  • What are your eating habits?
  • What kind of shampoo is used?
  • How often do you wash your hair?
  • Do you use a conditioner? What type?
  • How do you normally style the hair?
  • Do you use a hair dryer? What type? How often?
  • What other symptoms are also present?

Diagnostic tests that may be performed include:

  • Examination of the hair under the microscope
  • Blood tests

References

Habif TM. Hair diseases. In: Habif TP, ed. Clinical Dermatology. 5th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Mosby Elsevier; 2009:chap 24.


Review Date: 10/28/2010
Reviewed By: Linda J. Vorvick, MD, Medical Director, MEDEX Northwest Division of Physician Assistant Studies, University of Washington, School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.
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