Alopecia remedies vary and can include natural remedies as well as drug therapies. Treating the underlying causes of hair loss or thinning hair is most important in deciding which remedy might be the most effective. Some people who suffer from hair loss opt for surgical procedures to replace hair follicles or to insert hair plugs. These should not be confused, however, with alopecia remedies, because they do not cure the condition and are useful only for cosmetic purposes.
Alopecia, also known as alopecia areata, is characterized by spot baldness or thinning hair. It affects both men and women, and it can be caused by an autoimmune disease, such as lupus or arthritis. In some people, alopecia is hereditary or is caused by other conditions, such as nutritional deficiencies, eating disorders, an overactive or underactive thyroid gland, a viral infection, anemia or certain prescription medications. Alopecia areata also might be caused by hair that is pulled too tightly, such as can be the case with certain braided hairstyles. Frequently referred to as female pattern baldness, it sometimes is attributed to a hormonal imbalance in women.
Left untreated, hair loss and hair thinning is permanent. Alopecia remedies are often successful in reversing this condition and should be sought at the earliest signs of hair loss. Particular symptoms that one might immediately notice include hair that is thinning at the top of the head or a more than normal amount of hair loss when grooming. With men, in particular, a receding hairline also might be attributed to alopecia areata.
Besides the obvious signs of hair loss and hair thinning, alopecia areata is actually diagnosed via medical examination. During an exam, a doctor will also investigate the possible causes of alopecia while endeavoring to halt its continuation. In doing so, there are several approaches that a doctor might take.
Medical alopecia remedies often include using steroids either topically or by injection. Other medical remedies include prescription medications such as tretinoin or minoxidil. Occasionally, oral contraceptives might also be prescribed to treat hair loss, although in some cases, contraceptives have been known to be an underlying cause of hair loss.
Popular natural alopecia remedies include correcting and manipulating one’s diet to insure that proper nutrients are gained in order to stimulate healthy hair growth. In particular, vitamins A, B-complex, C and E are recommended, as are adequate amounts of other minerals, such as calcium, selenium, magnesium and zinc. Fish oil capsules and essential oils also are useful if the scalp is infected or in any way inflamed.
Herbal alopecia remedies also involve topical treatments, such as conditioning hair with honey and olive oil. Both are helpful in treating scalp infections, soothing irritated skin and strengthening the hair shaft. Raw onion juice also is useful in treating scalp infections. Other soothing remedies include various treatments utilizing herbs such as rosemary, thyme, sage, lavender, grape seed oil, jojoba oil, evening primrose oil and peppermint oil.
Alopecia remedies can stop hair loss and restore hair growth, but certain remedies might not be suitable for some individuals. Therefore, consulting a physician for diagnosis and treatment is best. If one is pursuing herbal alopecia remedies, it is important to do so under the watchful eye of a physician, because certain herbs do not interact well with certain prescription medications.