It is normal to lose 50 to 100 hairs a day. If you are losing more hairs, you might be experiencing hair loss. Excessive hair loss, or alopecia, happens when your cycle of hair growth and shedding is disrupted or your hair follicle is destroyed and replaced with scar tissue. Hair loss can affect your scalp or entire body. You can lose hair due to heredity, hormonal changes, medical conditions, or medications. Men, women, and children all can experience hair loss. By taking medications and making lifestyle changes, however, it is possible to counteract hair loss.
Preventing Further Hair Loss
1Reduce stress. Having high stress levels can lead to particular types of hair loss.Try to stay relaxed. Practice meditation, talk walks, or do yoga. Consider writing in a journal to help sort through daily stresses. Hair loss from stress need not be permanent. If you can reduce your stress levels, your hair might regrow. The following types of hair loss result from excess stress:
- If you have telogen effluvium, significant stress pushes large numbers of hair follicles into a resting phase. Within a couple months, affected hairs fall out suddenly when you comb or wash your hair.
- With trichotillomania, you have an irresistible urge to pull hair from your scalp, eyebrows or other areas of your body. You might do this to deal with stress, tension, loneliness, boredom, or frustration.
- Stress also can cause alopecia areata. With this condition, your immune system attacks your hair follicles, which causes hair loss.
2Treat your hair well. Avoid tight hairstyles, such as braids, buns, or ponytails. Do not twist, rub, or pull your hair excessively. Be gentle when washing your hair with warm (not hot) water. Do not brush your hair too hard. A wide-toothed comb can help you avoid pulling out excess hairs. Minimize harsh treatments on your hair like hot rollers, curling irons, hot oil treatments, and permanents.
3Drink plenty of water. You hair shaft is comprised of 25% water. Drink at least sixty-four ounces of water (eight cups of 8 oz.) per day. This will help you stay hydrated and assist hair growth.
4Incorporate herbs into your diet. Sage is thought to increase hair density while rosemary may stimulate hair growth. You can cook with both herbs. Try to use them weekly and buy fresh rather than dried rosemary if possible. Eating a nutritionally balanced diet will also help prevent hair loss.
- You also can mix rosemary with almond oil. Apply the concoction directly to your scalp in bald areas.
Utilizing Natural Remedies
1Apply topical, crude onion juice. Applying onion juice to one’s scalp has been proven to treat patchy hair loss. The sulfur content in onions boosts collagen production and helps your hair to grow. Researchers believe onion flavonoids might have anti-inflammatory effects. Although you can purchase onion juice in the store, to make and use your own, follow these steps:
- Chop an onion into fine pieces.
- Squeeze out the juice with your hand or use a juicer machine.
- Apply the juice to your scalp for about 15 minutes.
- Gently wash your hair.
- Repeat two to three times a week.
2Make a garlic and coconut oil concoction. Like onions, garlic has a rich sulfur content that can help regrow your hair. Coconut oil has plentiful essential fats, minerals, and proteins, which decrease hair loss and breakage. Garlic’s iron and potassium levels make your hair stronger. To make a garlic ointment, do the following:
- Gather several garlic cloves and coconut oil.
- Crush the garlic cloves with a garlic press.
- Mix the garlic together with one teaspoon coconut oil.
- Boil this mixture for a few minutes. Stir gently.
- After the mixture cools, apply it to your scalp in a gentle, massaging motion. Repeat two to three times a week.
3Take a capsaicin supplement. A study in Growth Hormone & IGF Research showed that capsaicin, the compound in peppers that make them hot, stimulated a growth factor associated with hair growth. Test subjects took a 6 mg supplement daily for five months. Talk to your doctor about incorporating the supplement into your diet.
4Massage your scalp with jojoba oil. Rub the oil into your scalp and hair. Especially focus on areas with existing hair loss. Jojoba oil is an anti-inflammatory, which may be why it can help with some kinds of hair loss. You can find jojoba oil in health and wellness stores and in some grocery stores.
Fighting Hair Loss with Professional Treatments
1Visit a doctor. If you are concerned about your hair loss, visit your doctor to discuss treatment options. There are a variety of alternatives, including medication, laser treatment, and surgery. Which option you pursue will depend on your budget, severity of hair loss, and available time.
- In some cases, hair loss is due to estrogen deficiency or thyroid issues. Identifying and treating these underlying issues may correct the problem, reducing or ending your hair loss.
2Take medications. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) have approved two drugs to combat hair loss. The first, Minoxidil (Rogaine), is a non-prescription liquid or foam available at drug stores. Both men and women can benefit from this drug. For women, this is the only approved hair loss medication. Twice a day, you rub the product into your scalp. The product works to grow new hair and/or to prevent additional hair loss. Finasteride (Propecia) is a prescription drug available only to men. One takes a daily pill. Many finasteride users experience slowed hair loss and some may have new hair growth. With both drugs, you must continue use for the effects to last.
- Possible side effects of Minoxidil include scalp irritation, undesired hair growth on your face and hands, and a rapid heart rate.
- Some uncommon side effects of finasteride include reduced libido, decreased sexual function, and a higher risk of prostate cancer. Women who are potentially pregnant should not touch broken tablets.
3Consider surgery. For long-term hair loss, hair transplant or hair restoration surgery are options. If you pursue this treatment, your surgeon would remove small skin plugs, which each contain a couple hairs, from your scalp. She would then put the plugs into your bald spots.
- Your doctor might ask you to take hair loss medication prior to and following your surgery to improve your results.
- Surgery for baldness is costly and can cause significant pain. You could end up with infections or scarring.
4Use laser therapy. Both women and men can treat pattern baldness with low-level laser combs like HairMax Laser comb. The procedure is FDA-approved. To treat your hair at home, you move the laser comb slowly from the front of your scalp to the back and then from the sides to the center. A beep sounds every four seconds to let you know when to move. A recent scientific study proved that laser combs (applied three times per week) do improve hair growth.
- Each treatment takes ten to fifteen minutes. You should treat your hair three times a week.
Understanding Your Hair Loss
1Identify how you are losing your hair. You might have gradual thinning on the top of your head or circular or patchy bald spots. Does your hair come out in fistfuls? Are you losing hair on your head or all over your body? Do you have patches of scaling on your scalp? Noting your symptoms will help you diagnose what is causing your hair loss.
2Discover the root cause of your hair loss. Hair loss can happen at any time in one’s life due to many reasons. Changes in hormones, illness, burns, and trauma all might cause hair loss. A family history of androgenetic alopecia, or baldness caused by variations in the androgen dihydrotestosterone, also is a contributing factor. Hair loss is not caused, however, by poor circulation to the scalp, vitamin deficiencies, dandruff, or excessive hat or cap-wearing. Furthermore, it is untrue that a gene passed from a person’s maternal grandfather causes baldness.
- Androgenetic alopecia (pattern baldness) affects both men and women. In men, hair begins to recede from the forehead in a line resembling the letter M. Women usually keep their hairline but their part widens.
- Patchy hair loss, which appears as smooth, coin-sized bald spots usually on the scalp can indicate that one has alopecia areata.
- If you are experiencing significant changes in your hormones, like if you are a woman going through menopause, you may experience hair loss. Talk to your doctor about treating your hair loss at the hormonal level.
- Physical or emotional shocks can cause hair to loosen. You might lose handfuls of hair when combing or washing your hair. Generally, your hair will feel and look thinner overall. Patches of baldness are unlikely.
- Hypothyroidism, or an underactive thyroid, may cause hair loss. Treating the hypothyroidism may halt your hair loss.
- If you have lost hair all over your body, this could be a result of some medical treatments like chemotherapy for cancer. Your hair usually will grow back with time.
- Ringworm is another cause of hair loss. Patches of scaling can spread over your scalp. Further symptoms are broken hair, redness, and oozing.
3Be aware of risk factors associated with baldness. If you have androgenetic alopecia rather than hair loss caused by illness or trauma, understand associated risk factors. Men with alopecia are more likely to suffer from coronary heart disease, prostate enlargement and cancer, diabetes, obesity, and high blood pressure. Women who suffer from androgenetic alopecia have an increased risk of polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).