Just like a majority of the world, you too dream of long, Insta-worthy locks, right? And everytime you lose too many strands of hair, you want them to grow back super quick? We can totally connect with you.
Hair is an important part of all our personalities and we all want to have long and beautiful hair. So in this article, we have put together a list of home remedies, in-office treatments and the right kind of diet to follow for you to enhance your hair growth. Keep reading.
Hair Growth Cycle
Before getting to the treatments, let’s discuss how the natural growth cycle actually works.
Your hair is a long chain of proteins that is found on most parts of your body. This protein is called keratin, which makes up most of your hair and stimulates hair growth in the cellular level.
According to dermatological science, an average healthy hair follicle can grow up to half inch every month, which means around six inches in a year.
With age or due to certain health conditions, the function of hair growth cells become weaker, leading to decrease in production of new hair follicles. As a result, your hair starts becoming thinner and some people may experience balding.
Factors That May Contribute To Hair Loss
Your genes may be a key factor in contributing to baldness. Look around you. If your immediate family members appear to be having thin hair or have experienced hair loss, there is a chance that you may face the same issue.
2. UV rays
The sun’s UV radiation is as harmful for the hair as it is for the skin. The UV rays cause hair damage and dryness, resulting in hair breakage.
3. Hormonal changes or medical conditions
Pregnancy, menopause and other hormone-related conditions may affect or slow down the growth of your hair. This may be temporary or permanent. Some conditions like alopecia contribute to balding as well.
4. Hairstyles & hair treatments
Tying up your hair too often or regularly using heat styling products can contribute to breakage. Hot oil hair treatments can also cause inflammation of your hair follicles, resulting in hair loss.
5. Some medication
Certain medications used to address specific issues like arthritis, high blood pressure and depression among others can contribute to hair fall.
Diet To Improve Hair Growth
Improving hair growth involves reviving your existing damaged hair follicles. Your body requires a good amount of energy to make your hair grow faster. Including certain foods in your diet can boost hair growth. Add these vitamins and minerals to your diet for improved hair growth:
1. Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Studies conducted on women saw a reduction in hair loss of those who consumed omega-3 and 6 fatty acids.
Research suggests that zinc deficiency may contribute to hair loss. Adding it to your diet or consuming supplements can aid in hair growth.
3. Vitamin C
Mainly found in citrus fruits, Vitamin C may help prevent hair thinning. Its antioxidant properties fight free radicals in your body (1), thus contributing to firmer hair. Free radicals are molecules that can damage DNA and contribute to hair loss.
Iron deficiency may contribute to hair loss (2). Make sure you consume foods rich in iron to prevent this.
5. Vitamin D
Studies have found that people with alopecia were short of Vitamin D (3). Alopecia is a condition that causes balding. It has also been found that Vitamin D is capable of creating tiny hair follicles in your body (4).
In-Office Hair Growth Treatments
1. Hair Transplant
Hair transplantation involves the removal of hair strands from one part of your scalp or body to the bald parts that require to be treated. Those parts which donate the hair are called ‘donor sites’ and the bald parts are the ‘recipient sites’.
Hair transplantation has a high success rate and has been widely adopted by doctors all over the world to treat balding. Follicular unit extraction and follicular unit transplant are the two main hair transplantation methods used by doctors to treat hair loss. Talk to your doctor about which technique should be recommended for you.
2. Stem Cell Hair Growth
Stem cells help repair broken or damaged tissues in the body, and is used to treat male and female pattern baldness.. This procedure involves using stem cells to divide and replace damaged tissues and promote hair growth.
The stem cell hair transplant technique removes and uses a small skin sample, through which hair follicles are grown. These follicles are replicated in labs, following which they are planted back into the scalp or other balding areas on your body.
You must have heard of microneedling to treat scarring. But do you know, there is enough evidence to prove its efficacy in treating hair loss as well?
Microneedling is the process of using a roller with tiny needles that causes minor injuries on the scalp/skin. Researchers have shown evidence to prove that this procedure may help induce stem cells in your hair follicles. This may promote hair growth.
Apart from that, this process also promotes the absorption of products used to treat your hair loss or balding.
Platelet-rich plasma technique for hair loss involves drawing a person’s blood, processing it and injecting it back into the affected area. Researchers believe that this technique stimulates hair growth by enhancing blood circulation and flow to the hair follicle.
PRP is often recommended by doctors in combination with other hair loss treatments.
5. Laser Therapy
The low-level laser therapy technique uses UV light to treat hair thinning and loss in men and women. This technique is non-invasive, making it a pain-free technique to promote hair growth. The treatments results in voluminous and thick hair.
Home Treatments To Boost Hair Growth
1. Essential oils
Essential oils like rosemary oil, pumpkin seed oil and peppermint oil may contribute to hair growth. One study showed that pumpkin seed oil increased hair growth in men upto 40 per cent.
Make it a point to dilute essential oils in carrier oils. Applying pure essential oils may not be as effective and can also cause allergic reactions.
2. Topical ointments
Your dermatologist may recommend topical ointments if you’re experiencing alopecia or hair loss.
- Topical melatonin: It reduces hair fall and improves the thickness and density of your hair.
- Topical minoxidil: Used in 5 per cent concentrations, it can slow the hair loss process.
- Propecia: It helps improve hair fall symptoms.
3. Use protein
Your hair is made up of protein. This lends strength and firmness to your hair. Adding protein treatments can protect your hair from environmental aggressors. Using coconut oil may also prove beneficial in aiding in hair strength. It contains fatty acids that prevent protein loss (5).
Word of caution:
However, too much protein may affect your kidneys, so be careful about where you get your protein from. Dietary intake is recommended over supplements.
Natural Remedies To Grow Your Hair Faster
1. Aloe vera
This magic ingredient is used to treat a variety of skin conditions. And what’s better, it has properties that aid-in hair growth as well (6). It does this by unclogging blocked pores and will also leave your scalp feeling refreshed.
Aloe vera is also effective in treating dandruff. You can apply pure aloe vera gel to your scalp a few times a week.
Another wonder ingredient, lemon is rich in Vitamin C. This ingredient can encourage hair growth and maintain a healthy scalp.
Applying lemon juice 10-15 minutes before you wash your hair can do the trick for you. Lemon oil is also effective in maintaining a healthy scalp (7).
3. Curry leaves
Rich in protein, these leaves can boost hair growth, improving firmness and quality. They also contain amino acids that strengthen hair follicles and moisturize your scalp.
Daily Tips To Improve Hair Growth
1. Massage your scalp once everyday. It will increase blood flow to your hair follicles and stimulate hair growth.
2. Brush your hair gently. This is important to avoid breakage.
3. Rinse your hair with cold water. Hot water can strip away essential oils and result in breakage.
4. Avoid tying your hair up too often. Tying up your hair can result in inflamed follicles.
5. Invest in a hair serum. Hair serums offer an instant shine and also prevent hair damage. They also reduce tangles and prevent breakage.
6. Avoid using tools that produce too much heat. Frying your hair is as bad as consuming fried food! Avoid using hot straighteners and hair equipment. These tools result in breakage and also dry up your hair, stripping away moisture content.
Various factors like UV damage, certain hairstyles, medication and your genes can contribute to hair loss. So including vitamins and minerals in your diet is essential to improve your hair growth. Talk to your dermatologist about the various in-office treatments that can be used to enhance hair growth and volume. However, even if your hair growth efforts are not successful due to genetics or health issues, remain confident and live your live happily.
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