Seborrheic Dermatitis

Seborrheic dermatitis is a skin disorder that cause itchy, flaky and irritated skin on the scalp, face, or upper body. The condition can affect people of all ages, including infants, where it is commonly called “cradle cap” and resolves on its own. In adults, it’s more common in men than women.

While the symptoms may be a cause of concern or embarrassment, seborrheic dermatitis is not the result of poor hygiene. The exact cause is unknown, but contributing factors include a yeast that is commonly found on the skin, certain medical conditions, and dry, cold weather.

Signs and Symptoms

  • Dry, itchy scalp
  • Scales/flakes on the scalp
  • A reddish or yellowish rash found:
    • along the hairline
    • behind or in the ears
    • on the eyebrows
    • the skin along the nose
    • on the chest or upper back

Treatment for Patients with Seborrheic Dermatitis

ColumbiaDoctors dermatologists have extensive expertise in the management of sebborheic dermatitis. While there is no cure, and flare-ups will often continue throughout life, our physicians offer a full range of the therapies to help you manage your symptoms to keep this condition from causing discomfort.

Treatments include:

  • Antifungal medicines,
  • corticosteroid creams,
  • prescription-strength medicated shampoos
  • light therapy

Your dermatologist will work with you to determine which treatment or combination of treatments is right for you.

Helping you manage your seborrheic dermatitis

Living with seborrheic dermatitis can be stressful and frustrating, and managing its symptoms requires an effective long-term strategy that fits your lifestyle. At ColumbiaDoctors dermatology, we offer expert advice and access to the most effective treatments to help you reduce your symptoms.


Herbert Irving Pavilion, 12th Floor
161 Fort Washington Avenue
New York, NY 10032

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51 West 51st Street, Suite 390
New York, NY 10019

ColumbiaDoctors Third Avenue Office
880 Third Avenue, 3rd Floor
New York, NY 10022