What is Betnovate Scalp and what is it used for?
Betnovate Scalp Application is a topical steroid medication used to treat inflammatory dermatoses of the scalp. It works by reducing inflammation and itchiness caused by eczema or psoriasis. It is available in two strengths: 0.05% and 0.1%. Both strengths contain the same active ingredient. However, the stronger strength may cause more side effects.
An itchy, or irritated scalp can have several causes — from dandruff and seborrheic dermatitis to psoriasis or allergic reactions. If you’re unsure, it’s always best to consult your GP.
How does Betnovate Scalp work?
The active ingredient in Betnovate is Betamethasone, a corticosteroid that is applied topically to the affected area. Betnovate Scalp Application can effectively treat symptoms of irritation, redness, and inflammation, and can help in relieving chronic conditions where weaker treatments have failed to work. Betamethasone works by blocking the release of inflammatory chemicals called cytokines that cause the symptoms of eczema.
Betnovate scalp application is not intended for use every day. Instead, it should be used to manage sudden flare-ups. Once Betnovate has taken effect, you should follow up the treatment with a moisturiser or emollient to keep the skin healthy. Always follow the instructions included in the packaging carefully.
Alternatives to Betnovate Scalp
Prescription-strength corticosteroid treatments are more likely than milder treatments to cause unwanted side effects. It is therefore recommended that you try over-the-counter treatments first to check whether they are effective for you. There are a few non-prescription alternatives to Betnovate Scalp that can be used to treat a dry scalp, these treatments include:
Prescription medication is always stronger and more effective than milder, over-the-counter treatment options. However, it’s always best to try these first, before you move on to more powerful medications. There are a few non-prescription treatments you can try:
- Nizoral shampoo
- Alphosyl 2 in 1 Shampoo
- Neutrogena T-Gel
- Selsun shampoo
There are also some prescription-only alternatives to Betnovate Scalp Application. These include:
Dovobet gel, a topical corticosteroid treatment paired with a form of vitamin D. This works well with scalp psoriasis, rather than an itchy scalp, which may be the result of any number of conditions.
Elocon Lotion, another topical corticosteroid that can help to relieve itching and irritation of the skin. However, it may also cause inflammation of the hair follicles.
Betnovate Scalp: effects on the hair
When using Betnovate Scalp Application, be sure to follow the advice below:
- Don’t use a hairdryer directly after applying Betnovate cream and keep your head away from sources of heat
- Give the treatment time to soak into your scalp and don’t wash it off by accident
- Betnovate may cause hair growth, but it’s not suitable as a treatment for hair loss.
- Do not use Betnovate in combination with hair dye — it should only ever be applied to dry hair
Betnovate Scalp Application Patient Information Leaflet:
How to use Betnovate Scalp
Apply to the affected areas of the scalp twice a day, preferably once in the morning and once at night. You will be advised by your GP on how long you should continue your treatment.
Always wash your hair and dry thoroughly before use, and keep your hair away from sources of heat after application, as Betnovate is flammable.
Instructions for use:
- Wash your hands.
- Unscrew the bottle cap and place the nozzle on the affected area of the scalp.
- Cover the area with a thin and even layer of Betnovate — you can rub it in, but you don’t need to if you’d prefer not to.
- Wash your hands once more.
Betnovate Scalp ingredients
Betnovate Scalp Application contains the active ingredient: betamethasone valerate 0.122%.
It also contains the inactive ingredients: Carbomer, Isopropyl Alcohol, Sodium Hydroxide, and Purified Water.
Betnovate Scalp side effects
Common side effects associated with Betnovate Scalp Application can include:
- a feeling of burning, irritation, or itching where the liquid is applied.
- stretch marks may develop
- veins under the surface of your skin may become more noticeable
- increased hair growth and changes in skin colour
- thinning of your skin and it may also damage more easily
- weight gain, rounding of the face
- high blood pressure
Stop using Betnovate Scalp and seek immediate medical attention if:
- Your skin condition gets more severe or becomes swollen during the use of Betnovate
- You suspect you may be allergic to Betnovate
- You have acute psoriasis and you get raised bumps with pus under the skin. This is known as pustular psoriasis, and while very rare, will require immediate attention from a medical professional
- If any of the above side effects become serious, or if you notice any side effects not listed here or in the accompanying Patient Information Leaflet, please consult your doctor or pharmacist.
Betnovate Scalp warnings
If anything listed below applies to you, you should not use Betnovate Scalp Application:
- You are allergic to betamethasone valerate or any of the other listed ingredients of Betnovate.
- You have a skin infection on your scalp
- You have previously suffered an allergic reaction to another steroid.
- You are applying the liquid under an airtight dressing. These dressings make it easier for the active ingredient to pass through the skin, which may result in your body absorbing too much.
Betnovate Scalp use during pregnancy or while breastfeeding
If you’re pregnant or breastfeeding, you must consult your doctor before using Betnovate.