Crawling Sensation on Scalp, Reasons and Treatments

crawling sensation on scalp

When a bug, spider, or other insects scurry past you, it is normal to have a crawling sensation on your scalp or other areas of your body for a while; more so if the bug has crawled onto your skin.

I admit that I had an unpleasant sensation all night when I noticed a millipede passing next to me. And the most mysterious thing is that I was searching for data to write this article for Ungex at that instant. For the next few days, I remember having a feeling like an insect creeping over my body. I tried to find the insect, but fortunately, nothing was there.

Although it is common for a short period to feel something creeping on your head or body, some individuals live chronically with this horrible sensation.

Sometimes, the crawling sensation is just on the scalp, but it may also be on other areas of the body. Crawling sensation is also known as Formication. Besides, this is also a kind of tactile hallucination. The word Formication originates from the Latin word “Formica,” which means ant. It indicates the feeling when ants crawl on the body.

This article will discuss the causes as well as the treatments for this annoying condition.

So, join Ungex on this quick trip.

What Causes People To Feel That Creepy Sensation On Their Scalps?

Most of the causes that make people feel creepy are unrealistic. This indicates that no physical agent originates this sense; thus, what is felt is just paraesthesia.

Note: What Does Paraesthesia Mean?

Paraesthesia is a bothersome sense on the skin that occurs for no real reason. Tingling, pricking, chilling, burning, numbness are some of these sensations. Paraesthesia can happen everywhere on the skin but is more prevalent in the arms and legs.

What is notable is that the creeping sensation on the head and other areas of the skin may be evident. In other words, skin parasites may exist and crawl under your skin, where they are out of your sight. Therefore, to understand the origin of Formication, it is important to consult a dermatologist to rule out any parasitic issues.

If the crawling sensation on your scalp is for real, Ungex protocol may help you. Read on to know more.

Crawling Sensation Due To Unreal Causes 

As discussed above, the crawling sensation is often a tactile hallucination involving several factors. Let’s discuss some of them.

Psychological Agents

Crawling sensation is more widespread in individuals with mental disorders. Hallucinations, delusion and issues stemming from drug and alcohol abuse are some of these situations.


“A sensory experience that occurs in the absence of an external stimulus” – Aubrey Moe, a psychologist with the Early Psychosis Intervention Center at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center.

Any of the five senses of taste, sight, hearing, and touch may involve hallucinations. Although crawling sensation is often a tactile hallucination, some individuals, mainly those who have suddenly quit alcohol consumption, may have a visual hallucination. They may see bugs or other insects creeping on their body, while, in reality, there is nothing there.


“A fixed idea that’s not consensually held” in the person’s culture and “is not consistent with the world at large.” Dr Philip R. Muskin, a psychiatrist at New York-Presbyterian and Columbia University Irving Medical Center and outgoing secretary of the American Psychiatric Association.

To summarize, delusions are more linked to ideas, concepts, and beliefs than to sensations. To be more precise, individuals with delusions may have a conception of insects attacking them; they believe that the bugs are attacking them.

Drug And Alcohol Abuse:

Alcohol, cocaine, and amphetamine abuse for a long time can cause a crawling sensation on the scalp. This sensation is so prevalent in cocaine abusers that you can find the phrase “cocaine bugs” repeatedly in the literature.

As discussed earlier, abrupt alcohol withdrawal can also lead to the visual illusion of insects and the crawling sensation.

Environmental Agents

The difference between what I mentioned in psychological factors and what I’m just going to explain is that the former is “just in your head.” Although there are still no bugs, some agents can cause your nervous system to respond abnormally and send wrong messages. Some of these factors are as follows:

Taking Some Types Of Medication:

If you are taking one or more of the below medicines or have abruptly stopped using them, you may feel creepy on your head:

  • Some types of antibiotics
  • Corticosteroids
  • Stopped taking benzodiazepine
  • Quitting tramadol
  • SSRI / SNRI antidepressants withdrawal

Clinical Concerns:

Some clinical concerns may affect the CNS or peripheral nerves leading to a creepy sensation:

  • Multiple sclerosis (MS)
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Lyme disease
  • Strokes
  • Some Vitamins deficiencies
  • Skin cancer
  • Tumour 
  • Thyroid dysfunction
  • Diabetic neuropathy
  • Syphilis
  • Hypocalcemia
  • Shingles

Furthermore, mercury poisoning and exposure to some pesticides can also cause Formication.

Interestingly, some of the physiological situations, such as menopause, can also lead to this issue. So, if you are at the end of your fertility timeline, it is usual that you undergo such a feeling.

The Real Causes Of The Crawling Sensation

This is where the sensation turns into truth. No more hallucination or delusion. Tiny beings are really creeping under your skin:

Head Lice

Head lice are widespread at the school age, principally in cold countries like Canada and Russia.

These parasites are wingless insects that can only live on the human scalp and feed on blood. The female deposits 3 to 4 eggs a day, which are oval and are 0.8 mm in length. The eggs are visible as little lumps attached to strings. Head lice are tiny, but still, you can see them with naked eyes. 

Beyond head lice, body lice can lead to itching and crawling sensation on the body.

Fortunately, lice diagnosis and remedy is manageable. If the cause of your creepy sensation is head lice, a dermatologist or even a general practitioner can fix the problem in a few weeks.

Ringworm of the Scalp (Tinea capitis)

In contrast to its name, the Ringworm is not a worm. This issue is rooted in the proliferation of a particular species of fungus that lives on the scalp. The fungus can quickly spread to others by direct contact. Using shared brushes, sheets, and other personal items can cause them to spread.

People with weak immunity are more prone to develop this type of fungus.

The problem shows itself when the scalp gets itchy and scaly in circles, and the strings fall out.

To prevent others from becoming infected, one should treat this issue as soon as possible.

Antifungal medicines and disinfecting personal items help resolve Tinea capitis crawling sensation.

Demodex Mite

Demodex mites are tiny organisms that are different from head lice. They are invisible to the naked eye and primarily feed on skin oils instead of human blood. Most importantly, they live on most of us in small numbers. Demodex mites live under the skin, next to the follicles and sebaceous glands. Female Demodex lays eggs and reproduces in the same place. They hate sunlight. Hence, Demodex mites climb up to the surface at night, mate, and return by sunrise.

Crawling on the skin’s surface with eight tiny feet can be a convincing reason for the crawling sensation on the scalp and other body areas. This feeling becomes more noticeable when the number of Demodex increases. Diverse factors, including infectious skin issues and weak immunity, can give them the opportunity to over-reproduce.

Demodex crawls on the skin at a speed of 16-18 cm per hour. So, when many Demodex mites crawl simultaneously, the feeling of crawling is not so surprising.

People who carry large numbers of Demodex usually feel more itchy and creepy at night.

Why do I feel crawling sensation on my scalp?

Watch this video for more information on why you may feel like bug are crawling on your head.

How Doctors Treat Formication 

The fundamental strategy in treating the crawling sensation is finding the underlying cause. The physician decides about the treatment process based on the diagnosis. 

Usually, a general practitioner, a neurologist, and a dermatologist are the specialists who play a role in the final diagnosis.

If the feeling of creepiness is because of psychological problems, which is often the case, psychiatry and cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) are on the agenda.

In the case of clinical concerns, such as MS, the doctor treats the underlying disease to manage the crawling sensation. He/she may also change medications that cause creepiness if it is feasible.

After all, if the feeling of crawling on the scalp has a real cause, the treatment focuses on eliminating parasites. When these parasites are removed, the crawling sensation also disappears.

How Ungex Protocol Helps You With The Crawling Sensation

Ungex pty ltd is an Australian company that has formulated products that exclusively eliminate Demodex mites. They can eliminate Demodex on your scalp and body, as well as from environmental surfaces.

To check whether your crawling sensation is related to Demodex, take this online test to know how prominent the Demodex infestation is. If you have a high population of Demodex, the feeling of crawling on your scalp is likely relevant to them.

Our products are also effective in eliminating various other parasites, such as head lice. Many of our clients have stated that Ungex products remove lice, insects, bugs, and other mites. Thus, they might be effective in eliminating other real causes of the crawling sensation. So, try them and share the result with us.

Furthermore, some of our products contain antifungal and antibacterial ingredients that can remove toxic bacteria and fungi that cause itching. Since some of the factors that cause a crawling sensation on the scalp are fungi, you can reclaim your skin health by removing them.

To summarize, if the cause of the crawling sensation on your scalp is real, you can give Ungex a chance to help.

crawling sensation on hair


9 thoughts on “Crawling Sensation on Scalp, Reasons and Treatments

  1. Linda Darfur says:

    I have been on different meds for anxiety and depression. For 30 or more years. For the past 4ormore days I have had a crawly type feeling mostly on face..
    A few sensations on my body.i am 67 years old.canyou guess what the. Problem is in my case?

    • Sepideh Ghaffari says:

      Hi Linda, thanks for contacting us. If you have this problem just for a few days please first investigate if the problem exists for you or other family members have this problem as well. Maybe there are some insects in your house that make you annoyed. If you are sure that there’s no trace of insects, mites can be investigated. Please visit our Demodex mite online test here:
      Then if the result was high population you may use our products. PDT spray even can help wipe out some insects and lots of mites as well. If you had any other questions you can ask us here:

        • Sepideh Ghaffari says:

          Hi Earnestine,

          It sounds like you have a horrible Demodex / skin mite infestation, but to give you some hope you are not alone and we help hundreds of people every day reclaim their skin back from skin mites.

          Unfortunately what we find is a lot of people aren’t believed by doctors when they say they have something crawling on their skin! Rest assured, you aren’t going mad and this is real! Dermatologists and specialists generally help treat skin symptoms associated with Demodex infestations/ mites not effectively treat against mites for the long term which sounds like where you are at.
          You can use Ungex products to stop this crawling sensation ,being bitten by Mites or insects.

  2. Diane says:

    I think I might have formication. I feel as with creepy crawlers are on my face, more so on the forehead. I do not use drugs other than my thyroid medication. I do take Collegen Peptides daily with my coffee. Could this contributing to this sensation?

  3. Sally J German says:

    My husband has been fighting crawling & pain of the scalp. There are small lesions as well. He’s been treated for folliculitis with antibiotics & a boat load of lotions. Biopsies have been negative.

    • Sepideh Ghaffari says:

      Given the persistence of symptoms despite treatment, it may be worthwhile to consider the possibility of Demodex mites as a potential cause of his symptoms. Demodex mites are microscopic parasites that live in hair follicles, and while they are usually harmless, they can sometimes cause skin irritation and other problems.

      If your husband’s symptoms persist despite other treatments, it may be worthwhile to speak with a dermatologist who can examine his scalp and potentially perform additional tests or recommend alternative treatments. In the meantime, it may be helpful to avoid any hair products or other substances that could be irritating his scalp and exacerbating his symptoms.

  4. Mari says:

    Im a teenager who has been living with a fear of lice for years one day I instantly used a mask tie up my hair and instantly felt crawling I didn’t think this was posible maybe I had lice again but I use tons of treatments for lice on my hair convinced I had it and it didn’t go away I’ve been homeschooled because of this problem and isolated no one has been able to help me I’ve been to the doctors and they checked my hair and said I didn’t have lice no one else in my family feels this way either. When I went to school I’d feel a ticklish feeling o my head I know it’s not a hallucination I’d cover my head constantly because I think I had lice just to find that other people started itching around me scared me I was homeschooled for 2 years with extreme social anxiety and don’t go out anywhere I’m ruining my life because if this I don’t know what it is I’ve been to therapy before and nothing. When I’m at home I feel calmer and don’t feel the the crawling sensation that much but I still do every once in awhile in the days maybe 5 times maybe a slight ticklish feeling or very ticklish crawling feeling same thing in public but worser I can’t help but itch my head I stay calm then it randomly happens I don’t know what to do at this point I’ve Beto countless doctors and no one can help me I have to start school again and don’t know if I’m going to be able to make it in thr school year I just want to have a normal life again.

    • Sepideh Ghaffari says:

      Hi Mari, I’m sorry to hear that you’ve been going through such a difficult time. It sounds like you’ve been experiencing a lot of distress and anxiety due to the sensation of crawling on your head. While I’m not a medical professional, it’s possible that what you’re experiencing may not be lice, especially if multiple doctors have examined your hair and found no evidence of it.

      Have you considered the possibility that you might be dealing with a different issue called Demodex mites? Demodex mites are microscopic parasites that naturally inhabit the human skin, including the scalp. In some cases, an overgrowth of these mites can lead to symptoms such as itching, tickling, and a crawling sensation.

      One treatment option you could explore is the Ungex Demodex treatment. Ungex offers a range of products designed to target and control Demodex mites. Our treatments have been used by individuals who have experienced similar symptoms and have found relief. Consider contacting Ungex directly to learn more about our products and how we may be able to help you.

      I hope you find the relief you’re seeking and can regain a sense of normalcy in your life.

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