If you’re one of the millions of people all over the world suffering from hair loss, then you know just how frustrating it can be. Trying to figure out the cause of your hair loss can be an overwhelming process, and it might seem like all solutions are nothing more than guesswork. In this article, we will discuss some of the most common causes of hair loss, as well as address some solutions that may help you restore your hair.
1. What Causes Hair Loss?
- Hormones: Hormonal imbalances can be a major cause of hair loss. When testosterone, a hormone present in both men and women, is produced in higher levels than normal, it can begin to have an effect on the hair follicles, causing them to shrink and become unable to produce healthy hair. Other hormones that can affect hair loss include the stress hormone cortisol, thyroid levels, and post-pregnancy hormones.
- Genetics: Hereditary or genetic hair loss is the most common cause of hair loss. It affects both men and women. This kind of hair loss usually follows a pattern, with some people experiencing receding hairlines or thinning at the crown of the head. If you have a family history of hair loss, you’re more likely to experience it.
- Medical Conditions: Certain medical conditions can cause hair loss. These include alopecia areata, a condition in which the immune system attacks the hair follicles. Other conditions that can cause hair loss include lupus, diabetes, thyroid disease, and iron deficiency. If you’re experiencing hair loss and have a medical condition, it’s important to talk to your doctor.
- Stress and Trauma: Stress and trauma can take a toll on the body, and one of the greatest effects is often hair loss. When experiencing a traumatic event, your body can go into a state of shock and produce large amounts of cortisol, a hormone that can lead to hair loss. Stress can also lead to tight scalp muscles, which can deprive the follicles of nutrients needed to stay healthy.
- Medications: Certain medications can cause hair loss as a side effect. Many chemotherapy drugs, for instance, are notorious for leading to hair loss. Other medications that can have an impact on your hair include birth control pills, high blood pressure medications, and certain antidepressants.
- Illness and Surgery: Surgery and illnesses can both cause hair loss. Certain illnesses such as thyroid issues, lupus, or even the flu can cause hair loss. Additionally, if you’ve been through surgery, it’s not uncommon to experience some level of hair loss as your body recovers from the procedure. This is usually temporary, but it’s important to monitor your hair loss and talk to your doctor if it doesn’t seem to be getting better.
2. Addressing Common Causes of Hair Loss
Thinning Hair and Pattern Baldness: Nobody likes thinning hair and a receding hairline. Fortunately, there are some common solutions to these problems.
- If thinning hair is the issue, then switching your diet to one full of healthy proteins, essential fatty acids, and vitamins can help. Look to include foods like fatty fish, nuts, eggs, avocados, and other sources of protein.
- Addressing underlying medical issues could be key to reversing pattern baldness. Medical conditions like thyroid disease or vitamin deficiencies can also lead to excessive hair loss, so getting these issues checked by your doctor can help.
- Shampooing regularly also helps! Natural shampoo made plant-based seed oils is recommended, as it helps to cleanse the scalp off dead skin cells, dirt, and sebum without stripping off the natural oils from your scalp and hair.
- Scalp massage is also an effective way of promoting hair growth. Massage your scalp using your fingertips and be gentle, and do this in a circular motion.
- For a more intense solution, look to taking over-the-counter or prescribed medicine. Minoxidil (Rogaine) is typically the go-to for treating pattern baldness. This is applied topically to the scalp and helps to promote hair growth.
Alopecia and Stress: Alopecia and stress-related hair loss can be difficult to take on. Here are some solutions to consider:
- Start by managing your stress and anxiety levels. Looking into meditations, breathing exercises, and yoga can help. Talk to your doctor about possible medications or other treatments if needed.
- Intermittent fasting can help to reduce stress hormones and help promote hair growth. Consider experimenting with this approach.
- Alopecia areata is an autoimmune disease that causes baldness in patches. Since this is an autoimmune issue, adding omega-3 fatty acids to your diet and taking vitamin D supplements could be beneficial.
- Additionally, rely on natural remedies like rosemary oil to massage your scalp while also benefitting from its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.
- If these remedies don’t help, seeking medical advice may be a good option. See your doctor for a proper diagnosis and to discuss possible steroid treatments like cortisone injections.
3. Natural Solutions for Hair Loss
Addressing Common Solutions
As with any condition, hair loss has many potential cures and solutions – some of which have become more scientifically proven than others. This section will look at some of the most common treatments on offer from medical and natural sources that may help to restore some of your lost locks.
1. Minoxidil and Finasteride
When it comes to treating hair loss, two of the most common medication solutions are Minoxidil and Finasteride. Minoxidil has been scientifically proven to offer a measure of relief against male and female patterned baldness, stopping further hair-loss from occurring and possibly even helping to regrow some of those missing hairs.Similarly, Finasteride provides relief specifically for male-patterned baldness, blocking the effects of 5-α-reductase – an enzyme linked to hair loss – from diminishing further hair production.
2. Hair Transplants
In more extreme cases, hair transplants are becoming an increasingly popular solution to address baldness. Typically, in a healthy donor area on the scalp, individual hair follicles are taken and inserted into areas of the head that are balding or receding. These follicles are believed to remain ‘’alive’’ in their new locations, preserving their original strength, status, and potential to grow. Hair transplants should only ever be conducted with a very experienced doctor to ensure that the recipient does not suffer any long term damage.
3. Alternative Remedies
Whilst there are a number of traditional medicinal remedies available, there are also a range of more alternative approaches too. These can include:
- Herbal remedies, such as saw palmetto, which can help prevent the reduce 5-α-reductase production.
- Essential oils, such as rosemary and lavender, which can stimulate hair follicles to encourage regrowth.
- Nutritional supplements, such as biotin and iron, which are helpful for the production of healthy hairs.
- Head massages, which are a relaxing way to naturally stimulate circulation and promote healthy hair growth.
Whilst these alternative remedies may provide anwers to your issues with hair loss, it is important to understand that they are not scientifically proven to provide a cure. As such, those looking into such alternatives should always do their research to ensure they understand the potential benefits and risks.
4. Practical Tips for Dealing with Hair Loss
- Reduce Stress: Stress has been linked to hair loss, so managing it can be beneficial. Exercise regularly, meditate, talk to friends and family, and generally try to keep a handle on your stress levels.
- Limit Styling: Excessive styling and use of chemicals can be damaging to your hair, so try to use heat styling, chemical treatments, and styling products sparingly.
- Eat Protein-rich Foods: A diet rich in protein is essential for healthy hair, so stocking up on proteins like eggs, nuts, dairy, fish, and soy can help hair growth.
- Take Supplements: Certain vitamins and minerals, such as biotin, vitamin C, and iron, can help hair growth, and they are found in supplements and multivitamins.
- Try Minoxidil: Minoxidil is an over-the-counter hair growth solution that is commonly used to treat androgenic alopecia, a type of hair loss. It can be applied directly to the scalp, and it has been shown to be effective for many people.
- Use Essential Oils: Essential oils have been used for years to promote hair growth and health. Popular essential oils for hair growth include peppermint, rosemary, lavender, and cedarwood.
- Treat Medically: Medical treatments are also available, including topical creams, oral medications, and steroid injections. Depending on the type of hair loss, the severity of your symptoms, and other factors, your doctor may recommend a combination of treatments.
These tips can help you tackle hair loss head-on. Reducing stress, limiting styling, and eating protein-rich foods will all help to promote healthy hair growth. Additionally, taking supplements, using minoxidil, utilizing essential oils, and seeking medical treatments can all help address hair loss. Keep in mind that hair loss is different for everyone, so speak to your doctor about the best course of action for you. Whether it’s stress, medications, or age that’s causing your hair loss, there are many possible solutions to address it and help you regain your confidence. Do your own research, consult with a doctor, and explore natural solutions. Hair loss can feel distressing but with the right solutions you can get your luscious locks back.