Losing hair can be frustrating, but this guide on hair loss can help. Discover causes, prevention tips, effective treatments, and more.
Let’s talk about hair loss, shall we? Losing hair can be a distressing experience, but fear not! We’ve got your back (or should we say your scalp?).
In this humongous article, we’ll be covering all the tips and tricks you need to know to stop hair fall and prevent shedding. Here’s what to expect:
- What is alopecia;
- How much hair is normal to lose;
- The most common causes of hair loss;
- Pattern hair loss in both men and women;
- 13 Best foods and supplements that promote hair strength;
- Top 5 hair growth shampoos and conditioners you can find on Amazon for around $10.
- 5 Highly-effective and natural home remedies for hair loss;
- The most widely-used medications that can help stop hair loss;
- 15 Prevention tips that’ll help you avoid losing your hair;
- Treatments for permanent hair loss;
- The impact losing your hair has on your mental health.
I’ve told you it’s a long article! Now let’s get started!
What Is Alopecia?
Picture this: your immune system is like a bouncer at a club, keeping out unwanted guests. But sometimes, it gets a little too aggressive and starts attacking the hair follicles on your skin, leading to hair loss. This is called alopecia areata, a fancy way of saying your immune system is causing your hair to fall out.
Although hair can disappear from any part of your body, alopecia areata usually affects your head and face.
There are three types of alopecia:
- Patchy Alopecia Areata – hair falls out in small, coin-sized patches;
- Alopecia Totalis – you lose all or nearly all of the hair on your scalp;
- Alopecia Universalis – you lose hair on your entire body, including your face.
Losing hair can be a real downer, but the good news is that the amount of hair loss varies from person to person. For some, it’s just a few small spots, while for others, it can be a lot.
But how much hair is actually normal to fall and when does this become a worrying sign? Let’s find out!
How Much Hair Is Normal To Lose?
According to National Health Service (NHS), it’s normal to lose between 50 and 100 hairs a day.
Don’t worry, it’s not as bad as it sounds. But if you’re noticing a significant amount of hair shedding beyond that, it might be a sign of hair loss.
It’s important to pay attention to your hair shedding because it can be a clue to underlying health issues.
So if you’re worried about the amount of hair you’re losing, it’s a good idea to see your primary care physician or dermatologist. They can tell you whether your hair loss is just normal shedding or if there’s an underlying medical condition causing it.
What Are The Causes Of Hair Loss?
But sometimes, thinning hair could be caused by underlying medical conditions like thyroid problems or autoimmune diseases.
So it’s important to get to the root of the problem (pun intended) and figure out what’s causing your hair loss.
If you’re experiencing sudden hair loss, developing bald patches, losing hair in clumps, or feeling itching and burning on your scalp, don’t wait – see a doctor immediately. These symptoms can indicate a more serious health issue that needs to be addressed ASAP.
What Is Pattern Hair Loss?
Pattern hair loss, medically known as androgenetic alopecia (AGA), is a condition where you lose hair on the top and front of your head. It’s usually caused by genetics and male sex hormones.
In men, it often starts with a receding hairline or bald spot on the crown. It is also known as male pattern baldness or male pattern hair loss.
For women, it’s more like a general thinning with wider part lines and see-through patches on the scalp. This is called female pattern baldness or female pattern hair loss.
Unfortunately, almost every woman will experience some form of this condition at some point, usually around menopause.
Foods And Supplements That Promote Hair Strength
If you want to keep your hair strong and healthy, there are several foods and supplements you can include in your diet.
Here are some of the best food options to include on your plate if you want to naturally reduce hair fall:
1. High-Protein Foods
Protein-rich foods can help promote hair growth. Your hair follicles are mostly made of protein, so it’s essential to eat enough protein in your diet to keep them happy.
Eggs are an excellent source of protein, making them a great addition to your diet for healthy hair.
Meat, especially red meat, helps repair and strengthen hair follicles.
If you’re looking for plant-based protein sources, beans are a fantastic choice. Black beans, for example, are a great source of zinc, which is also crucial for hair repair.
So make sure to get enough protein in your diet to keep your hair strong, happy, and healthy.
2. Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Don’t forget to add some fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, and herring to your diet! They are packed with omega-3 fatty acids, which help nourish your hair, prevent dry hair, and combat hair loss.
But that’s not all – avocados are also a great addition to your hair care routine. They’re loaded with healthy fats and vitamin E, which work together to nourish and protect your hair from damage.
If you’re more of a nut and seed person, you’re in luck! Almonds, walnuts, and sunflower seeds are all rich in vitamins, minerals, and healthy fats that promote hair strength and growth.
So go ahead and snack on some nuts or sprinkle some seeds on your salad to get strong locks!
3. High-Iron Foods
Iron is an essential mineral that plays a vital role in the growth and health of your hair. It helps your body produce hemoglobin, which carries oxygen to your cells, including your hair follicles.
Without enough iron, your hair may become weak and brittle, leading to hair loss.
So, if you’re experiencing hair thinning or shedding, it’s worth considering taking iron supplements or eating iron-rich foods such as:
- Red meat;
- Fortified cereals.
However, it’s important to consult with a healthcare provider before taking iron supplements as too much iron can also cause adverse effects.
4. Biotin Supplements
Biotin, also known as vitamin H, is one of the most popular vitamins when it comes to promoting hair growth and strength.
It is a water-soluble vitamin that belongs to the B complex family and plays a vital role in maintaining healthy hair, skin, and nails.
Biotin helps produce keratin, a protein that makes up the structure of the hair. This protein is what gives your hair strength, elasticity, and texture.
So, if you’re looking to grow strong, healthy hair, biotin is definitely worth considering.
While you can get biotin from your diet (foods such as eggs, nuts, and whole grains are good sources), it’s often difficult to get enough of this essential vitamin through food alone. That’s where supplements come in handy!
Taking biotin supplements can help prevent hair loss and promote healthy hair growth. Yeah, they may not give you hair like Rapunzel overnight, but they’re certainly a step in the right direction.
Plus, who wouldn’t want to take a vitamin that makes their hair look fabulous?
5. Collagen Supplements
Collagen isn’t just for your skin, it’s also important for your luscious locks! As a protein, collagen gives structure and support to your hair, helping to keep it strong and healthy.
If you’re looking to boost your hair health, taking collagen supplements may be just the ticket. They come in various forms, including pills, powders, and even gummies.
Also, collagen supplements are easy to find and easy to incorporate into your routine. Just pop a pill, mix a scoop of powder into your smoothie, or munch on a tasty gummy, and voila! You’re on your way to stronger, healthier hair.
So why does collagen work so well for hair? Well, as we age, our bodies produce less collagen, which can lead to weaker, more brittle hair.
By supplementing your diet with collagen, you’re giving your hair the building blocks it needs to stay strong and resilient.
But it’s not just about preventing breakage. Collagen can also help with hair growth, as it supports the hair follicles and helps to regrow thinning hair.
So if you’re looking to grow out your locks, collagen supplements might be just what the hair doctor ordered.
6. More Hair-Supporting Foods And Supplements
Other foods that help control hair fall include:
- Sweet potatoes – are packed with beta-carotene, a source of Vitamin A which can help regrow your hair naturally;
- Berries – blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, and blackberries can boost collagen production, strengthen hair follicles, and protect hair from damage caused by harmful environmental factors;
- Sweet peppers – contain loads of Vitamin C that promote collagen production and stimulates hair growth;
- Saw palmetto – helps stop balding in men and reduces patterned hair loss, a 2-year study finds;
- Oysters – are an excellent dietary source of zinc, a mineral that plays a vital role in supporting the hair growth and repair process;
- Pumpkin seed oil – might help increase hair count by even 40%, according to a 2014 study of men with male pattern baldness;
- Silicon supplements – such as orthosilicic acid (OSA) may help slow down hair loss and enhance hair brightness;
- Green tea extract – may help with hair loss due to its compound EGCG.
Top Hair Growth Shampoos And Conditioners
Taking vitamins and using natural oils can help regrow your hair and reverse hair loss. But did you know that using hair growth shampoos and conditioners can also do wonders for your hair?
Hair growth shampoos and conditioners contain ingredients that can promote hair growth, improve hair density, and prevent hair loss. These products often contain biotin, niacin, and other vitamins and minerals that are essential for healthy hair growth.
By using a hair growth shampoo and conditioner, you may be able to re-grow those pesky patchy sections, add some much-needed density to your thinning locks, and prevent sparseness from happening in the first place.
So, if you’re looking for a way to give your hair a boost, here are the best (and cheapest!) hair growth shampoos and conditioners you can get from Amazon right now:
- Maple Holistics Biotin Shampoo – tens of thousands of consumers have found this mix of biotin, zinc, and keratin to be really effective in promoting hair growth;
- Pura D’or Scalp Serum – with thousands of positive reviews, this blend of coffee, cayenne, DHT blockers, and apple stem cells is a great way to detoxify your scalp, combat hair loss, and promote natural regrowth;
- Andalou Naturals Argan Stem Cell Shampoo – with a combination of argan, apple, and grape stem cells, this shampoo helped thousands of hair loss sufferers to accelerate cell renewal in their scalp and prevent hair fall;
- SheaMoisture Strengthen And Restore Shampoo – it’s a blend of Jamaican black castor oil, shea butter, peppermint, and ACV to help cleanse, nourish, and restore damaged hair.
- Elevate Hair Growth Serum – thousands of reviewers are more than pleased by the results of this biotin+minoxidil hair serum.
Now, these are some of the most effective hair growth shampoos and conditioners according to their reviews on Amazon. And they’re all under twenty bucks. So it’s a double win for you.
Keep in mind that these products are not recommended by dermatologists or experts, but are tried and tested by other hair loss sufferers like you.
Natural Home Remedies For Hair Loss
Here are some of the most popular natural remedies against hair loss you can try at home:
1. Scalp Massage
Want to grow luscious locks and reduce hair loss? Don’t underestimate the power of a good scalp massage!
Massaging your scalp for just a few minutes a day can help increase blood flow to the hair follicles and promote hair growth.
According to a Japanese study, men who used a scalp massage device for 4 minutes a day saw thicker hair after 6 months.
Don’t worry, you don’t have to invest in any fancy scalp massage tools. Just use your fingertips to gently massage your scalp in circular motions.
If you’re a fan of aromatherapy, you’ll be glad to know that some essential oils may help promote hair growth.
However, it’s important to use essential oils carefully, especially when applying them to the scalp. Be sure to mix only a few drops of essential oil into a carrier oil and test a small patch of skin before using it all over your head.
Some people may experience topical allergic reactions to certain essential oils, so it’s best to be cautious.
While the results of using essential oils for hair growth are still inconclusive, it’s worth giving it a try if you’re curious. Plus, the scent of these oils may help you relax and destress, which is always a plus!
3. Onion Juice
Have you heard of the onion juice hack for hair growth? It might sound strange, but some people swear by it! The theory is that the sulfur in onion juice can help with regrowth.
While there isn’t a ton of research on this, a small study showed promising results for people with hair loss. Participants who applied onion juice to their scalp twice a day saw regrowth in over 90% of cases.
The downside? Onion juice isn’t exactly known for its pleasant smell. So if you decide to give this a try, you may want to add in a scent-masking ingredient (like essential oils) to make it a bit more bearable for your nose.
4. Aloe Vera
Aloe Vera is more than just a cute succulent – it can actually help with hair loss and scalp issues!
Here’s how to use it as a natural remedy:
- Cut off a stalk of Aloe Vera and extract the gel-like pulp from the inside.
- Apply the gel directly to your hair and scalp, making sure to massage it gently.
- Let it sit for about 45 minutes so it can work its magic.
- Rinse it out with water and voila! You’re done.
Repeat this process three to four times a week and watch as your hair becomes healthier and stronger. Plus, you’ll get the added bonus of reducing scalp itching and flaking.
So go ahead and raid your grandma’s garden for that hair-boosting plant!
5. Beetroot Leaves
Not only is beetroot packed with vitamins and minerals that your hair loves, but it also helps detoxify your scalp to keep it clean and healthy.
To use it for your hair, start by boiling 7-8 beetroot leaves and 5-6 henna leaves. Then, grind them up to make a paste. Apply the paste to your scalp and let it sit for 15-20 minutes before rinsing with warm water.
With regular use, you’ll be on your way to stronger hair in no time!
Medication To Stop Hair Loss
There are several medications that may help stop hair fall immediately. These include:
- Minoxidil – This over-the-counter medication is applied topically to the scalp to help stimulate hair growth.
- Finasteride – This prescription medication is taken orally and works by blocking the conversion of testosterone to dihydrotestosterone (DHT), a hormone that can cause hair loss in men.
- Dutasteride – Similar to finasteride, this prescription medication works by blocking DHT and can help promote hair growth in men.
- Corticosteroids – These prescription medications are available in topical or injectable forms and can help reduce inflammation and promote hair growth in some cases of alopecia.
- Spironolactone – This prescription medication is typically used to treat high blood pressure but can also be used off-label to treat hair loss in women by blocking the effects of androgens.
It’s important to note that these medications may not work for everyone and can have potential side effects.
So it’s best to talk to a healthcare professional before starting any hair loss treatment.
Prevention Tips For Hair Loss
Follow these tips if you’re not yet suffering from significant hair loss and want to prevent it:
- Eat a balanced diet – your hair needs proper nourishment to grow and shine. So, make sure you eat a variety of foods that are high in protein, vitamins, and minerals.
- Avoid tight hairstyles – pulling your hair too tightly can cause it to break and fall out. So, skip the tight braids, ponytails, and buns, and opt for looser styles instead.
- Don’t over-wash your hair – washing your hair too often can strip it of its natural oils, leaving it dry and brittle. So, stick to washing your hair every other day or every few days.
- Use a gentle shampoo – choose a shampoo that’s free of harsh chemicals, sulfates, and parabens. Look for shampoos that are specifically formulated for your hair type.
- Condition regularly – using a conditioner can help keep your hair hydrated, soft, and shiny. So, make sure you condition your hair every time you wash it.
- Avoid heat styling – using hot tools like blow dryers, flat irons, and curling irons can damage your hair and cause it to fall out. So, let your hair air dry whenever possible.
- Protect your hair from the sun – prolonged sun exposure can damage your hair and cause it to become dry and brittle. So, wear a hat or use a leave-in conditioner with SPF to protect your locks.
- Stay hydrated – drinking plenty of water can help keep your hair healthy and hydrated.
- Manage stress – stress can cause hair loss, so find healthy ways to manage stress like yoga, meditation, or exercise.
- Avoid smoking – smoking can damage your hair and cause it to fall out. So, put down the cigarette and pick up a healthier habit.
- Be gentle with wet hair – wet hair is more fragile than dry hair, so be gentle when brushing or combing it.
- Get regular haircuts – getting regular trims can help prevent split ends and breakage.
- Avoid harsh chemicals – chemical treatments like perms, relaxers, and hair dyes can damage your hair and cause it to fall out. So, avoid them whenever possible.
- Consider supplements – some supplements like biotin, iron, and zinc may help prevent hair loss.
- Embrace your natural hair – remember, your hair is beautiful just the way it is! So, embrace your natural hair texture and color and give it the love and care it deserves.
Treatments For Permanent Hair Loss
Permanent hair loss can’t be treated with supplements and medication. But don’t worry, there’s still hope. Here are the most effective solutions for permanent hair loss:
1. Low-Level Laser Therapy
Low-level laser therapy, also known as red light therapy or cold laser therapy, is a hair loss treatment that uses photons to encourage hair growth.
While it is considered safe and less invasive than hair transplant surgery, its results are inconsistent, with some studies showing positive results and others showing no significant difference.
Advocates praise the noninvasive and painless nature of the procedure, as well as its ability to increase hair strength.
But critics cite its time-consuming and expensive nature, as well as its potential ineffectiveness for advanced stages of hair loss and possible interactions with certain medications.
Additionally, the long-term safety and effectiveness of laser therapy have yet to be established.
But hey, it’s there, and it’s a real option for those looking for alternative hair loss treatments. And it’s approved by the FDA, so you know it’s safe.
2. Scalp Micropigmentation (Tattoos)
Have you ever heard of a hair tattoo? It’s also known as scalp micropigmentation, a non-surgical cosmetic treatment that can cover bald spots and thinning hair.
Providers use small needles to deposit tiny dots of pigment (color) on the scalp to create the illusion of thicker hair.
This treatment is not only for people with male pattern baldness, but also those with hair loss due to chemotherapy, alopecia, hormonal conditions, or thin hair. It can even hide birthmarks or scars.
The procedure is non-invasive, doesn’t require surgery or anesthesia, and is less painful than getting a tattoo. Before the treatment, the provider will wash the hair and scalp, mark the areas to treat and apply numbing medicine.
During the procedure, the provider deposits medical-grade pigment on the scalp with a needle, which takes up to five hours. You might need at least three sessions for a complete treatment.
There are very few side effects of scalp micropigmentation, and the treatment has several benefits over hair transplantation surgery, including being less invasive, less painful, and less costly.
The pigments used in scalp micropigmentation are permanent, and the treatment can last up to four years or longer.
However, it’s essential to choose a licensed technician to avoid possible risks, such as allergic reactions, infections, or unnatural or undesirable appearance after treatment.
3. Hair Transplant
If you’re experiencing permanent hair loss on the top of your head, don’t worry – there’s still hope! Hair transplant surgery can help you make the most of the hair you have left.
During the procedure, a dermatologist or cosmetic surgeon takes hair from a part of your head that still has hair and moves it to a bald spot.
They do this by removing tiny patches of skin containing one to several hairs, or sometimes by taking a larger strip of skin with multiple hair groupings.
While you won’t need to stay in the hospital, the procedure can be painful, so you’ll be given medication to help with any discomfort.
There are some risks involved, such as bleeding, bruising, swelling, and infection.
It’s also important to note that hereditary hair loss will continue to progress even after surgery.
Unfortunately, surgical procedures for hair loss are not usually covered by insurance, so it’s important to be prepared for the cost.
But if you’re looking for a long-term solution to your hair loss, a hair transplant may be worth considering.
Wigs can be a solution for permanent hair loss. They are a non-surgical option for people who experience hair loss due to various reasons, such as genetics, medical conditions, or treatments like chemotherapy.
Wigs are available in different styles, colors, and materials, such as synthetic or human hair, and can be custom-made to fit the individual’s head size and style preferences.
They can provide a natural-looking and comfortable option for people who want to restore their hair’s appearance without undergoing surgery or other invasive procedures.
Hair Loss On Mental Health
Hair loss affects a lot of people, both men and women. It’s more than just losing hair, it’s a big part of how we see ourselves.
The way we look can affect our thoughts, feelings, and behavior, and losing hair can really mess with our self-image.
Even though hair loss is common, it can still cause a lot of emotional distress like feeling self-conscious, embarrassed, frustrated, or even jealous.
It can cause serious emotional distress and can lead to personal, social, and work-related problems.
Moreover, a 1994 study finds that people with hair loss are more likely to have psychiatric disorders such as major depressive episodes, anxiety disorders, social phobias, or paranoid disorders.
Now, if you’re losing your hair, don’t worry, you’re not alone and there are people who can help you manage your hair fall and its psychological side effects.
Congratulations! You’ve made it to the end of this lengthy but informative article about hair loss.
Now that you’re armed with all this new knowledge, you’re ready to take charge of your luscious locks (or lack thereof).
Remember, prevention is key when it comes to hair loss, so don’t be afraid to try some of the tips we’ve listed. And if all else fails, just remember that a good wig can work wonders!
So embrace your inner Beyoncé, and don’t let hair loss hold you back. Keep on shining, and here’s to healthy, happy hair!