Many people are interested in home remedies for hair growth. Sometimes it’s because they are embarrassed about losing their hair and feel ashamed to see a doctor for it. More often, it’s because they want to avoid time-consuming and costly appointments with medical specialists, costly prescription drugs with unpleasant side effects, and expensive and painful medical treatments like hair plugs. While it’s understandable that people would prefer simple, affordable home remedies for hair loss, the problem is that many of them aren’t very effective. We’ll tell you about some of the most popular home remedies used to treat hair loss and we’ll also tell you what experts recommend.
Biotin – Nutritional supplements are commonly used to treat hair loss and of these, biotin may be the most popular. Biotin is one of the B vitamins and it is found in a wide variety of foods. Hair loss is a symptom of biotin deficiency, but biotin deficiency is very rare in the U.S, according to the Linus Pauling Institute at Oregon State University. If you do have a biotin deficiency (your doctor can order a simple blood test to find out), taking biotin will help. Otherwise, it won’t help the hair on your head regrow. It does, however, sometimes cause the growth of unwanted facial hair in women.
Iron and Zinc – Other nutritional supplements often used to treat hair loss include iron and zinc. Unless hair loss is caused by iron or zinc deficiencies, however, taking these mineral supplements won’t help hair regrow. It should be noted that iron deficiency is not very common in men and zinc deficiency is not very common in men or women. Your doctor can order blood tests to see if iron or zinc deficiency is causing your hair loss. It’s not a good idea to take large amounts of iron or zinc unless directed to do so by your doctor or other health care provider because too much of these minerals can actually be harmful.
Saw Palmetto – This herb can be found in capsule form at many health food stores. It’s thought to help prevent hair loss by preventing the conversion of testosterone to dihydrotestosterone (DHT). It may be effective for some forms of hair loss, including androgenetic alopecia, though there isn’t enough scientific data to say for sure. Keep in mind the fact that herbal remedies can interact with some medications and, while natural, are not safe for everyone. In addition, since herbs are not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration the way drugs are, it’s difficult to be certain of the dose you’re buying when you buy herbs in capsule form.
Essential Oils – Lavender essential oil, along with other essential oils such as rosemary, thyme and cedarwood, are sometimes used to treat hair loss. Some studies have shown that these essential oils may be effective in treating hair loss caused by alopecia areata, although additional studies are needed to confirm this. These essential oils have not been shown to be effective in treating hair loss due to other causes, including androgenetic alopecia, or hereditary baldness (which is the most common cause of hair loss). If you use essential oils to treat hair loss, be sure to add them to a carrier oil like almond oil before applying them to your scalp. Otherwise they can irritate or even burn the skin.
We recommend talking to your doctor to find out if one of these popular home remedies for hair growth might be helpful for you.
When people think of home remedies for hair loss, they often think of natural-sounding remedies, like biotin or saw palmetto. Our preferred home treatment is not a natural remedy, though. It’s a medication that is available over the counter for use at home. It’s affordable and easy to use, like most home remedies.
Rogaine is a topical remedy you apply to your scalp. It contains a medication called minoxidil, once available only with a prescription but now available over the counter. It’s the only medication approved by the Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of hair loss in both men and women and it’s effective for most types of hair loss. It’s often recommended by dermatologists and if you have questions about whether or not it’s right for you, talk to your doctor or consult a dermatologist.
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