Epsom salt is touted as a cure-all for a variety of ailments. But does Epsom salt work as a treatment for seborrheic dermatitis?
Many people use Epsom salt for seborrheic dermatitis. Epsom salt bath therapy is thought to soothe the skin, and it may also help reduce inflammation. Most SD sufferers find Epsom salt effective in treating SD when used in conjunction with other therapies. However, not all people will see results from using Epsom salt.
Let’s take a deep dive:
- What is Epsom salt?
- Is Epsom salt good for seborrheic dermatitis?
- Epsom salt baths for seborrheic dermatitis
- How does Epsom salt help dandruff?
- How to use Epsom salt for seborrheic dermatitis treatment?
- Side effects of Epsom salt
- To wrap up
What is Epsom salt?
Epsom salt is a natural compound made up of magnesium, sulfur, and oxygen. It dissolves easily and quickly in water making it an excellent bath additive.
Epsom salt can be bought over the counter from regular drug stores and many all-natural health food grocery stores. Soaking in a salt bath or washing your face with Epsom salt may help soften scales and relieve seborrheic dermatitis itch.
The magnesium in the salt is what’s thought to benefit SD skin. Dissolving Epsom salt into a bath is also a common remedy to soothe sore muscles and relax after a long day.
Is Epsom salt good for seborrheic dermatitis?
Epsom salt can be helpful in managing facial seborrheic dermatitis. The salts may help reduce inflammation and swelling. It also helps to exfoliate your skin, removing scales and loosening blackheads.
Epsom salt is even used for dandruff. The main ingredient in Epsom salt – magnesium, helps to reduce calcium build-up around the hair follicles, which can lead to dry flaky scalp and hair shedding and loss.Additionally, Epsom salt acts as a physical exfoliator for the scalp that removes dead skin and dandruff build-up.
There is actually no scientific evidence that Epsom salt works for SD. However, many SD sufferers swear it helps. Epsom salt is cheap and easily available. There’s no harm in trying it out if you’re looking for a natural remedy.
Keep in mind that Epsom salt should not be used as a substitute for medical treatment.
Epsom salt baths for seborrheic dermatitis
If your SD affects your chest, armpit or groin region, you may benefit from Epsom salt baths.
Epsom salt baths are generally considered safe, but it’s important to avoid submerging broken skin in the bath water, mostly because it’s going to sting like nobody’s business.
Soaking in Epsom salt has a variety of benefits, including reducing inflammation, improving blood flow and helping to heal wounds. The minerals found in Epsom salt can help improve cell-to-cell communication, which contributes to healthy tissue and cells restoration in the skin.
Additionally, the antibacterial and antifungal properties of Epsom salt may help to treat acne-causing bacteria and Malassezia yeast, reducing the severity of SD.
Remember that bath salts are not the same as pure Epsom salts. Most bath salts and bath bombs also contain other ingredients like fragrance or oils.
Soak in an Epsom salts bath for 10-15 minutes. Be sure to rinse off any salt residue after taking an Epsom salt bath. Otherwise, the leftover salt will pull out water from your skin, causing dryness and irritation.
How does Epsom salt help dandruff?
Epsom salt can help manage dandruff by reducing calcium build-up around the hair follicles. When too much calcium accumulates, it can lead to dandruff flakes and other scalp problems. Epsom salt helps remove this excess calcium and restore balance to the scalp.
In addition to its ability to reduce calcium levels, Epsom salt also has exfoliating properties that help remove dead skin cells and dandruff build-up from the scalp. The magnesium and sulfate in Epsom salt provide nutrients to the scalp, which help reduce inflammation, promote healthy hair growth and maintain scalp health.
This all-rounder salt also has antibacterial and antifungal properties, and may directly reduce Malassezia on the scalp.
How to use Epsom salt for seborrheic dermatitis treatment?
Epsom salt can be used as a standalone treatment or in combination with other treatments for seborrheic dermatitis. These are some of the best ways to use Epsom salts:
Epsom salt exfoliator
Epsom salt is a great exfoliator because it’s gentle on the skin and has a high concentration of magnesium. It can help remove dead skin cells, which can improve the appearance of your skin. Epsom salt can help remove dirt and excess oil as well. You can use the salt as a body or facial scrub.
Epsom salt pre-shampoo treatment
If you have a scalp that’s itchy and inflamed, Epsom salt can help. Wet your hair and apply dissolved Epsom salt to the scalp in a thin layer. Cover your head with a shower cap or plastic wrap and leave on for 10-15 minutes. Rinse off with cool water.
Epsom salt hair rinse
Epsom salt can also be used as a hair rinse after shampooing and conditioning to remove excess oils and make your hair look shinier.
Epsom salt face mask
Epsom salt face masks are a great way to remove toxins and excess oils from the skin while providing hydrating properties. There are various mask recipes around but this is an easy one:
Mix Epsom salt with a carrier oil like squalane or jojoba oil to form a loose paste. Massage the mixture into your skin and leave on for 10 to 15 minutes before washing it away with luke warm water. The mask can be used on a daily basis to help improve the appearance of oily skin and reduce the appearance of blemishes. However, if you find that your skin is getting too dry, cut it down to every alternate day or even once a week.
Side effects of Epsom salt
Keep in mind that everyone’s skin is different. What works for one person may not work for another. Some people have found that using Epsom salt helped improve their condition by hydrating their skin and reducing inflammation.
However, this treatment can also cause temporary burning and pain in some cases. In fact, if you’re having an acute SD flare, it’s guaranteed to sting. It’s important to start slowly when using this type of salt and increase the amount and frequency gradually if needed.
Other side effects may include dryness, itching, redness, scaling, stinging or tingling sensations, and swelling. Again, it is important to experiment in order to find an effective ‘Epsom salt recipe’ for your SD.
To wrap up
Epsom salt can be an effective treatment for seborrheic dermatitis when used in conjunction with other treatments. It’s a natural, safe and affordable option that can be used at home.
Further reading: Is Himalayan Salt Good For Seborrheic Dermatitis?