Is your hair beginning to thin near your forehead? Does it fall out in clumps while taking a shower? These can be signs of premature hair loss or balding, also known as alopecia.
“Hair is gently nourished by Kapha, Pitta provides colour and lustre while Vata promotes hair growth, when the tridoshas are in natural harmony. Improper diet, environmental factors and lifestyle may throw the doshas out of balance,” says Dr. Zeel Gandhi, Chief Ayurvedic Doctor at Vedix.
Read on to know what causes balding and how you can treat the condition right on time with the help of Ayurveda-backed remedies and medications.
- What Is Baldness According To Ayurveda?
- Does Thinning Hair Mean Balding?
- What Are The Causes Of Balding?
- What Are The First Signs Of Balding?
- How To Stop Balding And Regrow Hair?
- Tips To Prevent Balding
- At What Age Does Balding Start?
- Can Your Hair Grow Back After Balding?
- How Long Does It Take To Recover From Balding?
What Is Baldness According To Ayurveda?
According to ancient Ayurvedic manuscripts, the origin of hair begins from the bone tissue, which is also known as Asthi  in Sanskrit. Hence, Ayurvedic doctors recommend using medications and remedies to strengthen the bones in order to treat any hair issue including hair loss. These medications and remedies are recommended on a long-term basis. This is the underlying principle behind application of enemas or Vasthis with herb infused milk while treating cases of excessive hair fall.
In Ayurveda, Alopecia or baldness is known as Khalitya. The condition Indralupta denotes the condition Alopecia areata in Ayurveda. The method of treatment is focused on treating systemic and local conditions which causes hair loss. This is done by alleviating stress, improving localized scalp conditions and achieving immune modulation.
When considering the involvement of Doshas, aggravation or counteraction of Pitta dosha is the primary reason for hair-related issues in the scalp and body. However, other doshas – Vata and Kapha – may also be the reason behind any hair condition. The health of the hair and scalp can be inversely affected by digestive issues such as constipation and irregular bowel movement.
Does Thinning Hair Mean Balding?
Not everyone who experiences severe hair loss turns bald from the hairline area. A few men undergo a specific type of hair thinning known as diffuse thinning. In this condition, hair fall happens either from the scalp or localized areas such as the crown. This leads to baldness which begins from the top or back, not from the hairline region.
Similar to a retreating hairline, the simplest method to identify diffuse thinning  is to check your photos from distinct time intervals. If you observe that your hair is appearing thinner in recent times when compared with the photos taken earlier, there is a higher chance that you’re experiencing male pattern baldness.
As a general practice, nobody usually takes pictures from the back. In order to keep an eye on excessive hair fall, one can take pictures while standing in front of the bathroom mirror every 2-3 months to check the level of hair thickness.
If you observe thinning hair from your crown area as years pass by, it is impertinent to take preventive measures to prevent any further hair fall.
What Are The Causes Of Balding?
In medical science, the primary reason which causes baldness is still not clearly understood. In an affected individual, the hair follicles stop the production of hair. This leads to the appearance of round, smooth patches which may happen overnight. Till date, there is no diagnostic or indicative test that can forecast the beginning of the alopecia.
Nevertheless, excessive hair loss due to alopecia can be triggered by hereditary factors in a sizable population. Few other factors which may lead to alopecia include:
- Infections caused by fungi
- Localized skin conditions
- Pregnancy 
- Exposure to hazardous chemicals
- High stress levels
- Thyroid dysfunction
- Nutritional deficiency
- Prolonged illness
- Environmental factors
- Genetic factors
What Are The First Signs Of Balding?
Hair fall or breakage may appear in different ways, based on the primary cause which triggers it. The onset of hair loss can happen either gradually or suddenly which may affect the whole body or only the scalp.
The signs and other indicators of hair loss include:
1. Thinning Of Hair On Top Of Your Head
Thinning hair on the crown region is considered as one of the most common symptoms of hair loss, which generally affects individuals with growing age. In general, most men experience a receding hairline on their forehead, whereas women usually experience broadening of their hair parting. In older women, a hair thinning pattern which is commonly observed is the retreating hairline. This condition is also known as frontal fibrosing alopecia.
2. Patchy Or Circular Bald Spots
A few people experience patchy or circular hair loss spots  on their eyebrows, beard or scalp. The skin may become painful or itchy before their hair begins to break and fall.
3. Sudden Hair Loosening
Any major physical or emotional trauma may lead to sudden hair fall and breakage. A bunch of hair may be pulled out while washing or combing your hair. Even a gentle tug or pull can cause your hair to loosen. This generally leads to overall hair thinning but this is a temporary condition.
4. Hair Loss From Whole Body
A few specific medical treatments and conditions may lead to hair loss from the whole body. In most cases, the hair grows back completely as it was earlier.
5. Scaly Patches Spreading On The Scalp
This is a symptom of the medical condition commonly known as ringworm. This condition occurs along with other symptoms like swelling, redness, broken hair and pus formation.
How To Stop Balding And Regrow Hair?
After cleansing the scalp with water, it should be vigorously massaged for 10-15 minutes with fingertips on a daily basis. The vigorous massage activates your hair follicles by increasing the blood flow, and warming up your scalp.
2. Regular Hair Conditioning
In summers, you wash and condition your hair more frequently due to excessive heat and sweat production. This regular cleansing and conditioning minimizes the dryness of your scalp and hair. In winters, the best practice is to use hair oil to massage your scalp and hair in order to protect it from dryness.
In Ayurveda, various herb infused hair oils are used to gently massage your scalp and hair. This traditional practice of head oil massage is known as Sirolepa . Also popular as Thala pothichil, this is a renowned treatment for hair loss in Ayurveda. It involves a herbal hair pack application on your scalp, leaving it to dry for 20-25 minutes and rinsing off with lukewarm water.
This method is performed for 21 days. In the herbal hair pack, a single herb or mixture of herbs are present based on your profile and conditions.
This treatment is performed by pricking your scalp skin with a needle and allowing blood drops to come out. It is popularly used to treat Alopecia areata.
It is also explained as streaming of medicinal herbal oils onto your scalp and hair. A few water-based decoctions are made by boiling water with specific herbs. After the herbal infused liquid cools down, it is strained and used as a scalp and hair cleanser.
6. Internal Administration Of Oils And Ghee
This involves oral intake of oils or ghee in combination with astringent herbs. This treatment is beneficial in correcting Asthi dhatu based conditions and Pitta aggravated conditions. It is also considered as the first step in the Panchakarma method.
7. Application Of Steam
Steam infused with herbs is directed onto your scalp for eliminating blockages of Srothas or channels.
This medicated cleansing method is done by taking a few herbal purgatives which help to pacify aggravated Pitta dosha. 
Vasthi, which is also commonly known as enema, is a highly effective treatment in Ayurveda which cleanses the srothas or subtle channels located in various parts of the body. It primarily helps in cleansing the lower alimentary canal of your body. Vasthi is beneficial in calming the aggravated Vata dosha. Brimhana vasthi helps in the strengthening and regeneration of bones or asthi dhatu.
The administration of herbs and medications via the nasal channel is a panchakarma way of treatment which manages alopecia and several other hair conditions. This mode of treatment plays a key role in minimizing the appearance of gray hair and prevents premature baldness.
This Ayurvedic therapy follows the principle of panchakarma. Procedures and formulations especially designed for the regeneration of bone or asthi dhatu are utilized. The herbal formulations are recommended for long-term usage by the Ayurvedic physicians.
12. Ayurvedic Herbs
Gooseberry, Aloe Vera, Hibiscus or Rosa sinensis, Henna or Lawsonia inermis, and the most popular, Bhringraj or Eclipta alba are some of the beneficial and potent herbs which are used to treat hair loss and other hair conditions.
Vedix Tip: Include foods rich in Omega-3 fatty acids, protein, zinc, iron, vitamins A and C, etc in your diet. For example, walnuts, peanuts, chickpeas, spinach, pumpkin. These nutrients help you prevent hair loss and promote the health of your hair.
Tips To Prevent Balding
An aggravated pitta dosha may happen due to your lifestyle and dietary habits such as regular smoking and consumption of alcoholic beverages, tea and coffee. Acidic, spicy and oily food also alleviates the pitta. Hence, it is important that you should change your daily diet and lifestyle to manage your health and overall well-being.
Follow these simple yet effective tips to prevent the onset of balding and other hair issues.
- Include white sesame seeds in your diet as they are beneficial for your hair health and prevents hair loss
- Aloe Vera is extremely beneficial for treating hair loss as it rejuvenates your scalp and cleanses the pores. You can include it in your hair care
- Include milk, leafy vegetables and fruits in your diet to make your hair strong, thick and luscious
- Gently massage your head after rinsing to stimulate and activate the sebaceous glands present on your scalp to increase blood circulation
- Drink adequate amount of water to stay hydrated and expel toxins from your body
- Soya, legumes, sprouts and fresh vegetables should be included in your daily diet
- Regular massage of your scalp stimulates your hair growth process by improving blood circulation
- Exercise and meditate everyday
- Learn to manage your anxiety and stress levels
- Remember to sleep well at least for 8 hours in the night
- Avoid spicy, acidic and oily food
- Avoid chemical-based hair shampoos, serums and styling products
- Restrict consumption of alcohol, coffee and tea
- Don’t pull and tug your hard with excessive force while towel-drying or combing your hair
- Curling, hair dryers and hair dyes shouldn’t be excessively used
At What Age Does Balding Start?
Hair loss may begin from any age once you enter your adult stage of life. You may begin to experience hair loss as early as in the late teenage years or early 20s.
You may also have thick, healthy and normal hair with almost no signs of balding or thinning until you reach your 50 or 60s. The onset of balding and thinning varies from individual to individual. However, the universal truth about balding is that once you start getting older, your chances of experiencing balding and thinning becomes higher.
Can Your Hair Grow Back After Balding?
As you turn older, a few hair follicles in your scalp completely stop functioning. Hence, they don’t produce any new hair. This phenomenon is known as androgenic alopecia, pattern hair loss, or hereditary hair loss.
Androgenic hair loss is usually a permanent type of hair loss, which implies that your hair will never grow back to its original state. The hair follicle in your scalp shrivels up which makes it impossible to regrow hair. In a few cases, it is possible to slow down this hair loss pattern by taking a prescribed oral medication known as Propecia (finasteride), or using a topical scalp treatment known as Rogaine (minoxidil).
Most men with androgenic alopecia usually go permanently bald with no scope of hair growth. Women experience female pattern hair loss which lead to thinning of hair. However, it doesn’t lead to complete baldness except in a few cases.
How Long Does It Take To Recover From Balding?
You must be aware of the fact that there is no fool proof method to make your hair regrow quickly as it was earlier. Instead you should try to keep your hair healthy and strong in order to prevent hair fall as it undergoes the natural growth stages. Include the following tips in your hair care regime to keep your hair naturally healthy, beautiful and strong:
A. Protect your tresses from harsh, direct sunlight by using an umbrella or wearing a hat while stepping outside
B. Avoid smoking. Follow a cessation plan to quit smoking right away
C. Go for a regular hair trim in every 6-8 weeks to remove split ends
D. Use a natural and herbal shampoo and conditioner for your hair which is rich in Vitamin E
E. Avoid tight braids and ponytails
F. Avoid excessive heat and harsh chemicals on your skin and hair
G. Take nutrient supplements especially zinc, omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids, biotin, folic acid, and iron after consulting with your physician
The Last Word
Balding is a natural process which happens with age and other factors. Remember that there are simple hair care tips and tricks you can follow to keep your hair looking the way you desire, even if you experience thinning and breakage.
However, if you observe sudden hair fall after a major life incident or various other irregular symptoms along with hair loss, always consult your Ayurvedic doctor or to early diagnose and manage the hidden causes of hair fall. Ayurveda offers you a wide range of holistic and effective ways of treating and managing hair loss. At Vedix, we customize your hair care regimen after evaluating your doshas, hair type, and needs.Know Your Dosha Now
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