Soothe Your Scalp: How to Reduce Scalp Inflammation for Healthier Hair

Dr. Ahmad Chaudhry M.B.B.S.
By Dr. Ahmad Chaudhry M.B.B.S.
Updated on November 15, 2023

An inflamed scalp can be uncomfortable and cause flaking, itching, or soreness. Fortunately, there are several natural remedies you can try at home to reduce scalp inflammation and soothe your sensitive skin.

How to reduce scalp inflammation?

The most effective way to reduce scalp inflammation is to avoid what’s causing it in the first place. Common triggers include eczema, psoriasis, allergies, harsh shampoos/products, tight hairstyles, stress, and an impaired immune system. When possible, identify and eliminate the underlying cause.

Oatmeal treatments

Soaking your scalp in a warm oatmeal bath helps calm inflamed skin. Simply place 1/2 cup of warm water in a bowl and mix in enough colloidal oats to form a thick paste. Massage it into your scalp and leave on for 10-15 minutes before rinsing with cool water. Oatmeal contains avenanthramides that reduce redness and itching.

Cool compresses

Inflammation causes scalp temperature to rise. Applying cool compresses constricts blood vessels to lower swelling. Soak a clean washcloth in cold water, wring it out, then lay it on your scalp for 15 minutes a few times per day. Ice therapy also works well—wrap ice cubes or a gel pack in a towel before placing on problem areas.

Essential oils

Anti-inflammatory essential oils like tea tree, lavender, and peppermint can reduce scalp inflammation when massaged in. Add 5-10 drops to a 1-ounce carrier oil like coconut or jojoba oil and rub gently into your scalp, covering the entire area. Leave on overnight before shampooing.


By identifying triggers, avoiding harsh products, and using natural remedies like oatmeal treatments, cool compresses and essential oils, you can effectively minimize scalp inflammation and stop the itching and flaking. With diligent care, relief from a sensitive, irritated scalp is definitely possible.

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