HAIR AND ITS DISEASES
Hair is made of protein Keratin which helps the hair to grow. Hair growth has 3 stages. Each individual’s hair has its own characteristics and speed for growth. The growth rate of hair varies from individual to individual depending on their sex, age, genetic predisposition and countless environmental factors. Scalp hair is known to grow between 0.6cm and 3.36cm per month. The growth rate of scalp hair somewhat depends on age (hair tends to grow more slowly with age), sex, and ethnicity.
The anagen phase is known as the growth phase. This is the phase where the hair physically grows approximately 1 cm per month. It begins in the papilla and can last from three to five years. The span at which the hair remains in this stage of growth is determined by genetics. The longer the hair stays in the anagen phase, the longer it will grow. About 85%–90% of the hairs on one’s head are in the anagen phase at any given time.
The catagen phase, also known as the transitional phase. It allows the follicle to renew itself, This phase lasts for about two weeks, the hair follicle shrinks due to disintegration and the papilla detaches and “rests,” cutting the hair strand off from its nourishing blood supply. The body sends out signals which helps to determine when the anagen phase ends and the catagen phase begins. The hair shaft is pushed upward.
Telogen or resting phase (also known as shedding phase) the follicle remains dormant for one to four months. Ten to fifteen percent of the hairs on one’s head are in this phase of growth at any given time.
HOW MUCH HAIR LOSS IS CONSIDERED NORMAL-
It is very difficult for normal people to understand when they should be worried about their hair loss. Sometimes patients wait for pretty long time before consulting a doctor. Sometimes even with normal hairloss people seem to worry about it. So, to understand this we have to understand how much of hair loss is normal and when should we consult a doctor about it.
In an average adult the normal hair loss daily is 50 to 100 strands of hair. More than this is alarming. If you experience hair loss which is slightly more than average then wait for 3-4 weeks to see if it subsides because sometimes it will just be resting or telogen phase, but if the hairfall lasts then it the time to visit the doctor.
TYPES OF SCALP-
To understand the type of scalp it is very necessary what determines our scalp type. It is determined by our Sebacous gland which are tiny lands which open into hair follicle to secrete and oily and waxy substance called sebum. If the sebum production si normal then we have normal scalp, If it wears off due to pollution and chemicls etc then the scalp becomes dry so thus the hair. If it secretion is increased then it causes oily hair.
- Normal- It is neither oily nor dry. It can be managed easily and is soft to touch and has good lustre.
- Dry- The hair lacks lustre and is difficult to manage. It is difficult to comb the dry hair. Hair breaks easily. It is dry because of decreased sebum production.
- Oily- The scalp and hair is oily causing it to look greasy and stick to each other. The hair become oily easily even after head wash. This can predispose and cause fungal infections of scalp and dandruff.
An average adult has 100,000 to 150,000 hair on his scalp at birth. The number of follicles are decided at birth and cannot be increased with any treatment, but it can reduce or become dormant due to various health conditions or age. A normal person loses around 50 to 100 strands of hair per day. If it increases and if hair loss lasts longer than month then it calls for medical help.
Hair usually under grow birth and death cycle ie. Th new hair replaces the old or let’s say the old makes way for new.
When is hair loss common?
- Cycle of telogen [resting phase]
- After surgeries
- Major illness
- Traumatic events
In all above conditions hair loss should reduce after few weeks, if it does not then it calls for medical help.
- After discontinuing the birth control pills
- Thyroid disease
- Alopecia Areata
- Lichen planus
- Seborrheic Dermatitis
Drugs used for-
- Heart problems
Physical or emotional shock-
- Death of any family member
- Extreme weight loss
- High fever
Trichotillomania- A condition where patient pulls out ones own hair from scalp, eyebrows, eyelashes.
Deficiency- Deficiency of Iron, Vitamins and minerals
- Androgenetic Alopecia
- Alopecia Areata
- Traction Alopecia
HOW DOES YOUR DOCTOR ASSESS IF YOU HAVE HAIR LOSS??
Pull And Tug Test
The doctor takes small sections of your with around 40 hair stand and gently pulls and tugs. This is repeated on various parts of your scalp. If 6 or more strands fall out then we know that patient have active hair loss.
Trichoscopic Examination- This is done with the help oftrichoscope, where the scalp is viewed with magnification. This helps to understand the condition of scalp and hair.
HOMOEOPATHY AND HAIR LOSS
While treating case of hair loss it is important for patient to understand that if some drugs cause hair loss then it has to stopped or corrected. In Conditions where the medicines cannot be stopped then it is to be brought to the notice of doctor who prescribed them for you. In case of deficiencies it has to be corrected by proper life style and healthy food.
Homoeopathy corrects the hairloss by correcting the disease which brings on your condition. If it is due to thyroid problem, scalp or hair, everything is considered and root cause of hair loss is treated giving a long lasting cure for hair loss and not temporary relief.
It is a Auto immune disease where the immune system attacks its own hair follicle, which makes the hair come out in clumps, the size and shape of a coin. Amount of hair loss varies from person to person.
If all hair on scalp is lost it is called Alopecia Totalis.
If hair on whole body is lost the it is called as Alopecia Universalis
Family History of similar complaints or other Auto immune diseases like Thyroiditis, Vitiligo, Psoriasis, Atopy etc
ROLE OF HOMOEOPATHY
Homoeopathy is the only system which is one stop solution for all Auto Immune diseases. It boosts the immunity and makes it realise that it is attacking its own hair follicles and cure it.
Dry white fakes with itching of scalp is called Dandruff. It causes Hair loss and many a cases severe embarrassment. It is not because of hair problems but because of scalp problems.
Skin cells grow and die, if it happens too fast then it causes problem. A fungus called Malassezia Fur Fur is commonly present on our scalp. Id because of some reason this fungus proliferates and grows beyond a point then it causes flakiness, itching and hair loss.
What causes the fungus to grow??
When our immunity is weak for eg after exhausting diseases like typhoid etc, or fever or poor lifestyle and bad hygienic habits then fungus proliferates.
Do we need medical help for Dandruff??
Yes, once the fungus is growing then it dosenot get controlled by itself. We have to improve our lifestyle and immunity as well. Homoeopathic medicines boosts the immunity thus in turn decreasing and stopping the proliferation of the fungus.
Internal medicines help in correcting the immunity and thus controlling the fungus.
Therapy- Patient has to undergo sessions of therapy for clearing the scalp of all the scaling so that new hair can grow and the already present hair becomes strong. Therapy is advised so that the scalp can breathe and so can the hair. Thus, correcting the oiliness of scalp, making the hair strong and bringing back its lustre.
If the Telogen phase of the hair extends and prolongs for long time and the hair does not revert back to the growth phase then it is called Telogen Effluvium.
- Shock both physical and mental
- Traumatic events
This phase may lasts for 6 mths but we can’t just let the hair fall for 6 mths, as by that time there would be severe loss of hair. It can also cause embarrassment for patients as hair will be found every where around the house. It can create stress also which can in turn trigger more hair fall.
There will be thinning of hair first on the top of scalp then on sides and back. There is no hair line recession.
The hair which sheds has small bulb of keratin at the root end.
In some cases the eye brows and pubic hair can fall.
Internally– Considering the patients overall health and conditions the medicine is selected which puts a stop to the Telogen phase and pushes the scalp for growth phase.
Externally– Teflu therapy is recommended so that the hair regains its strength and quality. Medicines for hair growth and strength are used for effect. The treatment is focused on the roots of the hair and to improve the scalp.
It is a common scalp condition, which can affect the skin also. It causes itchy rash with flakiness and scales. It causes redness on light skinand light patches on dark skin
Exactly not known It can be genetic
- yeast infection
- cold, dry weather
- Certain medical conditions
- Weak immune system
Increased risk is seen in
- Eating disorders
In babies it is called creadle cap with scaling which is yellow or brown. It usually goes away and comes back when they reach puberty
On scalp there will be scaling, redness and itching. The margins of hair is involved which is characteristics of seborrheic Dermatitis.
On body mainly affected areas are middle part of chest, around navel, buttocks, fold of arms and legs, groin, below breasts. There will be itching, redness and burning.
Our medicine is given considering the patients symptoms. This medicine will have the power to strengthen immune system and cure the symptoms of seborrheic dermatitis.
- Genetic – AR gene- helps making protein called as androgen receptors
- Environment factors
- Increased androgens
- a) Short cycle of hair growth
- b) Growth of shorter and thinner strands
- c) Delay in growth of new hair
- Inheritance –unsure
How do you know you have androgenic alopecia?
- Gradual onset
- Increased hair shedding
- Transition of hair –thick pigmented hair gets converted to thin short hair which lead to short , non –pigmented hair
What actually happens?
Each hair has a growth cycle in Androgeneticalopecia, growth cycle becomes weak and hair follicle shrinks producing shorter, finer strands of hair .Eventually growth cycle for each hair ends and no new hair growth.
Age – It can begin in teenage years, but more common in adults.
DHT-Dihydrotestosterone – Androgens that is sex hormones which is reason for male sex character, but also for you to lose your hair faster and earlier
It is derived from testosterone.
Testosterone –with help of 5- alpha reductase gets converted to DHT and this will link with the receptors on the hair follicle and this leads to shrink of the follicles which in turn lead to hair fall.
VITAMINES AND FOOD NEEDED FOR ANDROGENETIC ALOPECIA
VITAMINS NEEDED ARE
- Biotin –helps boost and maintain levels of keratin
- Vitamin B12,B6 –Makes hair thicker and healthier by increasing
FOOD NEEDED FOR ANDROGENETIC ALOPECIA
- Pumpkin seeds –Acts as DHT blockers
- Green tea – contains Epigallocatechin gallate –protects hair follicle from DHT
- Coconut oil –Lauric acid – blocks DHT
- Onion –Quercetin(antioxidant)- blocks DHT
- Turmeric _ lowers DHT-Blocks 5 –alpha –reductace
- Pumpkin seeds – lower DHT- Blocks 5-alpha –reductace
NORWOODS SCALE-Understand severityand pattern of hairloss
- STAGE 1-No significant hairloss /reunion of hairline
- STAGE 2-Slight recession around temples
- STAGE 3-1stsign of balding appears
-Hairline recessed at both temples with M,U or V shape.
-Recessed spots are completely bare of hairs.
- STAGE 3A Vertex-Hairline at stage 2, but hair loss on vertex.
- STAGE 4-Secure hairline recession with sparse/No hair on vertex
-Two hair loss areas separated by band.
- STAGE 5-Band between two hair loss spares.
- STAGE 6-Balding areas of temples
-Join balding area of vertex.
- STAGE 7-Severe hair loss.
- STAGE 1-Mild,even distributed thinning of hairs
- STAGE 2-Moderate Hair loss
-Widening of midline part and decreased volume 50-70% in thinner.
- STAGE 3-Severe Hair loss
-Christmas tree presentation.
ROLE OF HOMOEOPATHY
Antrogenetic alopecia has a good solution in homoeopathy, the internal medicines given will help in the reducing the level of DHT and further will help in bringing down the progression of the disease. Homeopathic care clinic has a specialty that it will provide with external therapy, this will help in stimulating the hair follicles and will promotes the growth of the hair, As mentioned before Antrogenetic alopecia has many stages and patients with stage 1 to 5 can be treated, but stage 6, 7 there is no guarantee as the disease has progressed so much and there is a great hair loss .
- Causes of antrogenetic alopecia
- How do you know you have antrogenetic alopecia?
- What are the other diseases associated with antrogenetic alopecia?
- What happens in antrogenetic alopecia?
- Vitamins and Food that helps to reduce DHT?
- Stages of antrogenetic alopecia in male- Norwoods scale
- Stages of antrogenetic alopecia in female – Ludwig scale
- Role of homoeopathic medicines in Antrogenetic alopecia
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