Scalp sensitivity varies from person to person. Some people end up noticing an increasing occurrence of pain, burning, and hair loss. These signs can mean that your scalp is sensitized. The scientific name for this sensitivity is Trichodynia. The term has a Greek origin and literally means ‘pain in the hair. However, it actually designates the sensitivity on the scalp itself.

Our scalp is an area full of nerve endings, which has low elasticity and high oiliness. This makes it one of the regions of our body where we need the most daily care, but most of the time, we don’t give it the attention it requires. This is a mistake, especially if you are the type of person who is extremely sensitive in that area. 

What Are The Causes Of Trichodynia?

The simplest cause is hair loss. There can be other, more worrying causes. These are diseases such as seborrheic dermatitis (dandruff) and alopecia areata (an autoimmune disease that causes drastic hair loss). Also, it could be infections and inflammations, such as lupus, alopecia, and scalp tinea.

Those, who suffer of Trichodynia usually describe severe pain that looks like prickles and needles, in addition to burning, and tingling in the area.

But these pains are preceded by hair loss, which can be associated with emotional situations. Depression, anxiety, and excessive stress negatively impact the entire human body, forming a combo that becomes extremely worrying for capillary health.

Human hair serves as protection for this region, which is more sensitive to sunlight, cold, heat, and pollution.

Scalp pain without other symptoms

When scalp pain is the only complaint, the condition is usually easier to diagnose and treat. 

Possible causes are:


It can occur when the person is exposed to the sun for a long time. Bald people or those with very thin hair are more likely to suffer from burns.


One of the most common problems that appear on the scalp, dandruff, or seborrheic dermatitis usually causes discomfort or pain.

Constant use of dryers and other tolls

The frequent use of these devices “burns” the scalp and may be responsible for pain in the area.

Hair loss

As said above, hair loss itself can cause pain in the scalp, making the area more sensitive.


The use of chemicals can also make the scalp more sensitive and therefore create pain.


It can be the cause when the hair is “pulled” for a long time, for example, in very tight braids. The use for longer than necessary elastics, hat, cap, and helmets can also cause pain.

Oiliness or dryness

Excess oiliness or dryness in the hair can also increase sensitivity.

Pillar lichen planus

This type of alopecia can cause pain in the scalp, among other symptoms.


The pain may come from an infection of the hair bulbs. An example of this can be the ingrown hairs.

Scalp tinea

It is a fungal infection that can cause pain in the region.

These are some of the causes that commonly generate the complaint. However, while for some people, the only complaint is a pain in the scalp. For others, these same problems can also cause other associated symptoms. For all these reasons, each case must be evaluated individually by a doctor.

Scalp pain and dizziness

An important point to think about is whether scalp pain is the only problem or you are experiencing other symptoms, too. This will certainly serve as a starting point for the doctor to investigate the condition. Check out possible causes of scalp pain associated with dizziness:


It occurs when the cavities around the nasal passages become inflamed. This condition can lead to scalp pain and dizziness.

Herpes zoster

It is a reactivation of the chickenpox virus in the body. The virus reaches the eighth cranial nerve, and its pain reflects on the scalp, which can bring other symptoms, such as dizziness.


A bacterial disease, usually caused by the bacterium Staphylococcus aureus, which can cause dizziness and pain in the scalp, among other symptoms.

In all cases, symptoms vary from person to person. And even if the person clearly identifies the signs of dizziness and pain in the scalp, only the doctor can precisely diagnose the problem.

Scalp pain and headaches

Scalp pain often appears to be associated with headaches. Check the possible causes of this association:

Temporal arteritis

An inflammation of the blood vessels in the scalp can also cause pain. This disease is most commonly seen in the elderly.


A pain in the scalp and stitches in the head, associated or not with dizziness, are often signs of a migraine.


The pain in the scalp and headaches, among other symptoms, may come from lupus, an autoimmune disease in which the immune system attacks its own tissues.

Some also report stitches in the head in hair loss, herpes zoster, excessive use of tiaras and hair clips, folliculitis, etc.

Pain in the scalp and ears

When you feel scalp and ear pain, the most common causes are:


This is a frequent cause. The condition brings the feeling that the head is being tightened by a helmet.

Dental problems

This type of problem can also generate sensitivity in the scalp and ears.

Herpes zoster

The reactivation of the chickenpox virus in the body, besides causing pain in the scalp and dizziness, can also generate sensitivity in the ears.

Depending on the cause, scalp pain may appear in isolation in some cases and is associated with more symptoms. Therefore, each patient needs to be evaluated individually.

Scalp pain, fibromyalgia, and anxiety

When scalp pain is associated with muscle pain, it can be a symptom of fibromyalgia.

Fibromyalgia is a disease with little-known causes and is related to the functioning of the central nervous system and the mechanism of suppressing pain.

So, in some people, it can cause pain in the scalp. In addition to pain, it causes other symptoms such as fatigue, lack of disposition, sleep changes, and tightness in the head.

Another very common cause associated with scalp pain is anxiety, which, when in crisis, can increase scalp pain, burning, or itching. The greater the degree of anxiety, the more it will affect the symptoms, especially those related to itching, hair loss, infections, mycoses.

As there are many possibilities, the best is to consult a trusted doctor if you experience persistent scalp pain, especially when it is associated with other symptoms.

Habits That Contribute To The Emergence Of Trichodynia

Some habits help damage capillary health, thus making Trichodynia more easily.

  • Among them is the continued use of dryers, which tend to burn the hair and ignite the scalp.
  • Don’t use any hot tools close to your hair root, and take care of these devices’ continuous use.
  • The continuous use of chemicals and dyes, which often have aggressive reactions on the hair and scalp, causes the area’s sensitivity to increasing significantly over time.
  • Stress, anxiety, and depression make the body’s immune system even more fragile, causing conditions such as Trichodynia to appear with greater intensity.

What To Do When You Feel Pain In The Scalp?

The first thing to do is to make an appointment with a trichologist.

While the appointment does not arrive, you can do some things at home and in everyday life to alleviate or not to aggravate the problem:

  • Maintain scalp hygiene by washing your hair with shampoos without salt
  • As light as the conditioner is, keep it away from the roots
  • Do not use treatment creams until you visit the doctor
  • Let the hair dry naturally after washing
  • To avoid traction of the threads, don’t make ponytails or buns
  • Do not dye your hair
  • Don’t sleep with your hair up
  • And, very importantly, do not postpone the treatment because you think the pain is normal.

Is Trichodynia Curable?

The treatment for Trichodynia can even be challenging in some situations. However, specialists guarantee that it is always reversible.

As a rule, treatment is topical, with non-alcoholic lotions to avoid the risk of allergic reactions.

When the problem is associated with a disease such as alopecia or lupus, it is necessary to treat the cause and the consequences. There are oral medications, according to the case.

Due to the wide variety of causes that can cause pain in the scalp, only after an accurate diagnosis, the doctor will indicate the most appropriate treatment, which varies from case to case. Check out the main treatments below:

Drug treatment

Suppose the pain in the scalp comes from a disease, such as alopecia or lupus. In that case, it is necessary to treat the cause and the consequences. If the pain is associated with temporal arteritis, the use of corticosteroids is necessary for the treatment.

The treatment of fibromyalgia aims to control the symptoms and can be done with pain relievers, massages, and physiotherapy.

Drug treatment will be indicated only after diagnosis.


With homeopathy, the treatment is always done, prioritizing the cause of pain in the scalp. 

The information on this page is for information purposes only. They can not substitute the advice and support from doctors, nutritionists, psychologists, physical education professionals, and other specialists.