Ayurved Doctor

hair-fall

Hair fall and greying of hair: Ayurvedic management and home remedies

Hair is kind of our confidence factor and there won’t be a single human who is not bothered about their hair. Earlier girls were the more concerned, but now irrespective of the sex and age, hair issues have become a common problem. Let’s have a short glance into the Ayurvedic view of basic trichological conditions.

Hair fall

Ayurveda acharyas consider hair or kesha as upadhatu of Asthi dhatu or as mala of shukra dhatu. Keshachyuti or hair fall can be because of vaigunya (irregularities) in the Asthi dhatu or it may be due to change in quality of any of the sapta dhatu. Moreover, it is due to the change in the doshic balance of the body.

Some of the common causes of hair fall are:

  • Stress and Sleeplessness
  • Nutritional deficiencies like anaemia
  • Gynaecological issues like PCOS
  • Thyroid dysfunctions
  • Due to other skin problems or any scalp infections
  • Faulty or excess hairstyling techniques and treatments
  • Psychological issues like depression
  • Autoimmune conditions
  • The side effect of any medications as in chemotherapy.

Types of hair fall

  1. Patchy hair loss or Indralupta(Alopecia arieta)
  2. Complete hair loss or Alopecia totalis
  3. Male pattern or androgenic hair loss ( Khalitya) and Female pattern hair loss
  4. Telogen effluvium( temporary hair loss due to stress, shock, trauma etc)

Premature Greying of hair

 Who doesn’t want to look young? A single strand of grey hair is enough for all of us to get depressed and if it is worsening then there is no other tension than hair loss!! Age-related greying of hair is a natural process, but premature greying is due to deterioration of melanin content due to various factors.  Ayurveda explains, Palitya or premature greying as a pathological condition due to the imbalance of mainly Pitta dosha. Prakupita or vitiated Pitta does kesha pachana or due to the heat of the Pitta hair follicles get burnt and as a result, hair becomes grey.

Causes:

In general, anything that aggravates Pitta like

  • excess spicy, sour and salty foods
  • Anger, overthinking, stress and work pressure.
  • exposure to hot conditions including standing in the scorching sun

Genetic factors, overuse of chemical dyes, shampoos, excessive straining of eyes is also found to be a cause of grey hairs.

How to manage?

Before treatment aspects, the most important thing is to know the exact cause as well the nature of our hair. Kesha, in the Ayurvedic view, is a key factor in identifying the Prakriti of an individual.

Doshic typeColor and lusterHealthy hairIn vitiated dosha
 VATABlack, lusterlessThin, grows fastly,difficult to styleDry, brittle, falls in clumps, very thin with split ends
PITTABrownish black, with lusterMostly straight , medium thicknessPremature greying and baldness is more common
KAPHAJet black , greasy and lustrousThick and strong, mostly wavy hairVery greasy, Thick and heavy, generally have dandruff and other scalp issues like itching.

Instead of vague trials with different hair products, it’s always better to have a clear idea of the exact cause and dosha involved. Based on the cause, like any other systemic diseases hair also require internal medication along with external applications. But if you feel your system is completely ok and you want to improve your hair, Ayurveda offers innumerable keshya drugs and medications like Bhringaraj (Eclipta alba), Amalaki (Emblica officinalis), Reetha (Sapindus mukorossi), Shikakai (Acacia concinna), Kumari (Aloe vera), coconut milk etc.

  • Chemparatyadi kerataila
  • Nirgundi taila
  • Bhringamalaka taila
  • Neelibringadi taila
  • Neelinyadi taila
  • Himasagara taila ( especially for Pitta persons)
  • Malatyadi taila are some of the keshya taila mentioned in Ayurvedic classics.

Always keep in mind:

  • Avoid frequent head bath as it may alter the pH of hair ( normal pH is 4.5-5.5)
  • Always keep the scalp and hair clean, try to cover hair while going out.
  • Do proper brushing from scalp to tip; this will increase blood circulation in the scalp. Never brush and tie wet hair.
  • Only use a personal comb, bath towel etc
  • If you are using chlorinated or salt or hard water for the head bath, it’s better to store this water for around 8 hrs and then wash the hair.

Home remedies for hair fall

  • Have one spoon full of black sesame (til) seeds either alone or with a small piece of jaggery twice daily
  • One Amla (Indian gooseberry) a day is good for hair. This should be taken continuously for about 6 months
  • Oil prepared from hibiscus flowers, curry leaves, Bhringaraj and aloe vera is good for strong hair.
  • Oil prepared from leaf juice of gunja (Abrus precatorius) with the same amount of gingelly oil is found to be effective.
  • Hot oil massage is very good for strong and healthy hair. Take any keshya taila or the usual hair oil that you use and double boil it, when it is warm apply over the scalp and give a good massage.
  • Applying aloe vera gel over scalp will act as a rooting agent for hair.
  • Applying egg white is a very good source of protein for hair follicles.
  • For strong and long hair, soak triphala or hareetaki (Terminalia chebula) overnight in water and wash hair with the same.
  • Hairwash with previous day’s rice water is a good cleanser and nourisher.

Grey hair management

It’s impossible to have a complete reversal of this condition, in early stages ayurvedic medicines can prevent the progress by tackling the Pitta dosha. Internal medication along with a good virechana (purgation) is very necessary in this condition.

  • Thalapothichil or present-day henna is very effective. Henna prepared out of amla, triphala, curry leaves, aragwada (Cassia fistula) leaves, neem leaves, yashti choorna and Krishna jeeraka (Nigella sativa) can be tried.
  • Shiro dhara or takra dhara
  • Pranayama like naadi shudhi, sheetali, sheetkari.
  • Prepare homemade dyes by adding indigo powder and coffee powder in henna.
  • Giving a head massage with coconut milk is both nourishing and stress releasing.

# for internal medication always consults a qualified doctor. # Stay happy-stay healthy

Author:

Dr Arya Raveendran, BAMS,
With experience in treating skin disorders, pain management, lifestyle disorders, hair and cosmetic problems.

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