Normal hair grows in cycles and goes through 3 stages
– A growing phase
– A resting phase
– A falling phase
At any time, it may be normal for a person to lose as many as 50 hairs a day and these usually show up on a comb or brush or at the bottom of the bathtub or sink especially after washing your hair. Hair grows at 1 to 2 cm a month.
Abnormal hair loss
Your hair loss may be abnormal if you are losing more than 100 hairs a day. This may result in a general thinning of hair or in a patchy loss of hair over the scalp and other hair bearing areas such as the beard or eyebrows.
Categories of hair loss
Androgenetic Alopecia – A commonest cause of hair loss in both men and women. It is commonly known as male pattern baldness. It is caused by a combination of 3 factors – testosterone (the male hormone), age (after 20 years of age) and hereditary. It usually affects women later in life than men.
Alopecia Areata – this usually results in a patchy loss of hair. The exact cause is unknown; study says it is a Immune system Disorder.
Telogen Effluvium – diffuse loss of hair, which may occur 2 to 4 months following childbirth, or from high fever, acute illness, physical and emotional stress and crash dieting.
Chronic Illness – Due to dietary deficiencies like Iron. Thyroid diseases, syphilis and connective tissue disease are examples, which may cause hair loss.
Scalp Diseases – fungal and bacterial infection, and other local scalp diseases.
Excessive traction on the hair – for example tight curling and hair styles (corn-braiding, pony-tails). Drug Induced – anti-cancer drugs and anticoagulants are some of the drugs which may cause hair loss.
Alopecia Baldness (alopecia), or severe hair loss, is much more common in men than in women. It can result from genetic factors, aging, local skin conditions, and diseases that affect the body generally (systemic diseases). Herbal remedies increase circulation, disinfect the scalp and stimulate hair growth.
Male-pattern baldness is the most common type of hair loss affecting men. It’s rare in women and children because it depends on the presence of the male hormones (androgens), and levels of these hormones are high in males after puberty. The hair loss usually begins on the sides, near the front, or on the top of the head toward the back.
Female-pattern baldness or female hair loss is less common than male-pattern baldness. Usually, this condition causes the hair to thin in the front, on the sides, or on the crown. It rarely progresses to total hair loss.
Hair loss is known as Khalitya & white hairs are calledPaalitya in Ayurveda. According to Ayurveda, hair is a byproduct of bone formation and the tissue responsible for building bones is also responsible for the growth of hair. Early hair loss is related to body type and the balance of the mind-body constitution (doshas). People who have excess Pitta in their body are likely to lose their hair early in life, or have prematurely thin or gray hair. Excess Pitta in the sebaceous gland, at the root of the hair, or folliculitis can lead to hair loss.
What Causes It
Hair disorders can be caused by any of the following:
- Alopecia (nonscarring) — skin disorders, certain drugs, certain diseases, autoimmunity, iron deficiency, severe stress, scalp radiation, pregnancy, or pulling at your own hair.
- Alopecia (scarring) — skin disorders, diseases, or bacterial infections.
Excess of androgen (a steroid hormone that stimulates development of male sex organs and secondary sexual characteristics). This overproduction of androgen could result from certain drugs or conditions.
Hair shaft disorders
Over processed hair (coloring, permanent waves, excessive heating) or certain diseases.
Hair goes gray when melanocytes become depleted. The scalp contains a reservoir of adult stem cells that provide a continuous supply of these color-making cells. But as the body ages these cells become depleted and sometimes begin to develop in the wrong part of the hair follicle.
The scalp is nothing but the skin on the head. The skin of the scalp is same to the skin elsewhere. Like the body skin, hair skin also consists of two layers- the dermis and the epidermis. The hair is composed of a protein called keratin. The rate of hair growth varies from person to person. The growth of hair is always more between the ages of 20-30 and faster in summer as compare to winter. The hair dies and falls after a few years of growth. The average life of hair ranges from 2-4 years. But certain amount of hair is shed daily. The daily average shedding is estimated to be about 50-80 hairs. Hair loss beyond the estimated average indicates one or the other hair problems. Both male and female suffer from hair loss at one or the other point of time. The exact term used for any kind of hair loss is alopecia. Sometimes excess hair loss results in baldness also. Male hair loss and baldness is due to male hormones and often runs in families. It starts after puberty over the temples and the hairline that moves away and results in high forehead. The men usually start losing hair around 20-30’s. Some men have areas on the scalp that are very sensitive to the male sex hormones that circulate in men’s blood. The hormones make the hair follicles from which hair grows and shrink. These hair follicles become so small that they cannot replace lost hairs. For men hair loss is male pattern baldness. It is mainly caused by stress, poor nutrition and unclean scalp conditions. When the cause is corrected the hair will start growing again.
Hair loss is different in women. In women hair loss becomes common with the growing age. Some women also suffer from hair loss after delivery due to inadequate nutritious diet. Total blandness is rarely seen in women. There are various other factors such as sex life, age, hair type, heredity and health that affect the hair loss.
Dandruff can be defined as the excessive flaking of dead skin that forms on the scalp causing unpleasant and irritating condition. Dandruff is made up of bits of dead skin that peel away from the scalp as a result of the effects of metabolism. It is not visible to the naked eye during the early stages of growth. It becomes visible only after enlarging into pieces of dead skin. Dandruff is of two types. Dry dandruff and waxy dandruff. Dry dandruff is also known as pityriasis capitis simplex and waxy dandruff is known as pityriasis steatoides. Dry dandruff results in itching of the scalp and the white scales are loosely scattered in the hair. In waxy dandruff the white scales gets stick to the scalp. Dandruff is often caused by internal and external causes. Poor circulation of blood, poor hygiene, improper diet, hormonal imbalance and emotional stress are some of the internal causes. The external causes are excessive use of hair sprays and gels, use of harsh and strong shampoos and environmental conditions. It is believed to be infection caused by bacteria and is contagious in nature. The common use of the brushes, combs, towels, soaps and other articles spreads it.
Split ends are also known as trichoptlosis. The women with long hairs are more likely to suffer from split ends as they avoid regular trim. As the hair grows and reaches a certain length, the protective layer of the hair, the cuticle, becomes damaged and the fibers of the inner layers, the cortex and medulla get flayed. The only remedy is the trimming of the hair on a regular basis. Ignoring the condition will only make the situation worse. The splits will continue up the hair shaft causing more damaged hair that will need to be cut off.
The people with oily skin are more likely to suffer from oily hair. This is mainly due to the over activeness of the sebaceous glands that results in secretion of excess oil. As a result both the scalp and hair becomes oily. The oily hair attracts more dirt and gives a greasy look. It needs washing after every third or fourth day. The oil secretion is also affected by the hormonal imbalance that can be a result of stress, anxiety, faulty living style and high intake of greasy foods. The oily hair is more prone to scalp infections, itching and dandruff, as they get dirty soon after head bath.
The inactive oil glands results in dry hair. It is also caused by over exposure to the sun, use of harsh shampoo and chemical treatments. Accumulated oil on the scalp blocks the pores and does not allow the free flow of oil on the surface and makes the hair dry. They give a dull look and become brittle. The dry scalp needs more care and nourishment. The people with dry and dull hair should increase the intake of zinc. Oil massage is also beneficial for dry hair. One should try to avoid hair dryers and other harsh shampoos that make the hair drier.
It is also known as lice infestation. Unhygienic conditions often results in lice infestation. The people with long hair are more prone to lice infestation. The pediculosis causes itching and abrasions on the scalp of the skin. It is one of the most common contagious childhood diseases. Head lice are totally non-discriminating and can infest people of any lifestyle, age, race, or socio-economic status. Lice can multiply and spread quickly from one host to another.
Premature graying of hair
Hair tends to loose its natural colour with the age but many youngsters are suffering from this problem nowadays and it has become a matter of concern for many. The melanin pigment is responsible for providing colour to hair and is synthesized by protein. Lack of this pigment may result in graying of hair. There are many other factors such as inadequate diet, fault living style, and use of chemicals, harsh shampoos and stress. Some chronic health disorders like anemia and constipation also cause premature graying of hair.
AYUR SUDHA Advocates the treatment of hair Disorders according to the Prakuriti of Patient
Know the body constitution
Vitiated Dosha Assessment
Oral Herbal Treatment
External Application of herbal oils , Shampoo , Lotions.
Panchakarma – Shirodhara – Shiro Picchu – Shiroabhayang – Shirolep are all panchakarma procedures which are very helpful in hair disorders
Herbs are generally a safe way to strengthen and tone the body’s systems. As with any therapy, you should work with your health care provider to diagnose your problem before starting any treatment.
The popularity of Ayurvedic treatment for hair fall is resulted from the proven healing techniques of Ayurveda and natural healing remedies involving use of natural herbs and herbal formulations in treating many such chronic health syndromes that are most common nowadays. In most cases Ayurvedic treatment for hair loss provides quick result and consequently they are very popular.
Ayurvedic treatment of hair loss is aimed at pacification of Pitta through a customized diet and lifestyle regime, along with medication. A combination of diet, herbs, oil massage, meditation, aromatherapy, breathing and yoga can be beneficial in addressing the problem of hair loss and premature graying of hair.
Ayurvedic science in relation to the treatment of any type of health disorders look at the disease as a malfunction of the physical system that pertains to one of the three main dominant organic characteristics, namely Vata, Pitta and Kapha.
Now these distinct physical characteristics in different levels of conformity and relation with one another can form end number of different functional characteristics that are addressed according to the disease and health disorders. As per Ayurvedic science excessive Pitta Dosha or irregularities associated with Pitta characteristic is mainly responsible for hair fall in most cases.
Ayurvedic herbal formulations depending on your physical characteristics or Doshas as termed in Ayurveda can be useful as medicinal treatment for hair fall. Remember only a recognized Ayurvedic physician should be consulted before taking any Ayurvedic medicine.
The texture, pattern, density and natural colour of you hair is completely out of your control. That is to say, it depends on heredity, and no amount of wishing for straight hair or blond locks can change it (unless you resort to the bottle or the hairdresser).
However, the look and condition of your hair lies very much in your own hands since it is largely affected by your general health, hair hygiene, choice of hair products (shampoos, conditioners, mousses etc.) and grooming equipment (combs, brushes, curling irons, hair dryers, etc). Almost any illness or emotional stress can results in lifeless, dull hair and so it is true to say that healthy hair reflects a healthy body and mind.
On average, hair grows at a rate of about ½in (13mm) a month. Inexplicably, it grows more quickly at night than during the day and faster in summer than in winter. It is the hair’s thin coating of sebum (a natural oil secreted by the scalp’s sebaceous glands) that keeps it looking supple and shiny, so caring for your scalp is just as important as looking after the hair itself.
If you have no obvious hair problems such as dandruff or any form of alopecia, healthy hair can be maintained by washing hair and scalp regularly and eating an adequate, balance diet. There are no hard and fast rules as to how frequently hair should be washed – if your hair is particularly greasy, it could be as often as every day, in which case a mild or “frequent use” shampoo should be used. Those with dry hair should avoid over-washing and could benefit from professional treatment.
In our attempts to improve one of our most striking assets, we can sometimes do our hair more harm than good. Dyeing, bleaching, relaxing, and perming can all damage the hair, but even using such apparently innocuous items as plastic brushes, metal combs, and rollers can have a detrimental effect. Similarly, strong sunshine, sea water and chlorinated swimming pools can all dry the hair and scalp, so take preventative measures such as wearing a swimming cap, and protecting your hair with a hat in the strong sunshine.
To prevent tearing the hair, which leads to split ends, avoid using sharp combs or brushes, and comb it gently when it’s wet. Wherever possible, towel dry; If you use a hair dryer, keep it at least 6in (15cm) from your head and on a medium rather than a high setting. In fact, hair loss is a process that continues unremarked throughout our lives when the old hair drops out to make way for new growth (a healthy adult normally sheds between 50 and 100 hairs each day). However, it can become more apparent at certain times – in the case of women due to hormonal changes after childbirth and during menopause, and, irrespective of sex, after taking some drugs for the treatment of cancer.