The condition of our hair and our skin tells a lot about our general body health. We become easily upset when we discover even a slight change on our skin, or when we notice that our hair loses the volume or becomes thinner. In such cases, we begin to wonder if there if there is anything more distressful than losing the hair!
Alopecia areata is an autoimmune disorder marked by the occurrence of bald spots not only on the scalp, but on every part of the body that the hair grows. However, the hair loss is mainly visible on the head. The exact cause for the incidence of alopecia areata is not known yet, but heredity or stress combined with some other autoimmune disorders contribute to the appearance of baldness.
Alopecia totalis refers to the scalp and this condition causes total hair loss on this part of the body, while alopecia universalis causes the total bodily hair loss. In many cases, the hair regrows after a year without any treatment since there is no cure discovered for this disorder.
Treatment of alopecia areata
Unfortunately, even though this condition is not curable, several treatments can slow down the progressive hair loss and promote the hair growth. In case alopecia areata is restricted only, to a small area on the head, it should be observed but left untreated so that the hair regrows on its own.
Alopecia areata is regarded to be an autoimmune disease and because of that, one of the ways to treat it is to use the medications that effectively suppress the immune system. For such purpose, corticosteroids are usually used, either in the form of pills, or in the form of injections, which are administered into the affected area. Corticosteroids are also available in the form of topical creams that can be rubbed on the affected region.
Many experts recommend applying minoxidil 5% solution on the affected region since it promotes the hair regrowth within 12 weeks. Nevertheless, this medication does not cure this disease and when its application is stopped, the hair usually starts to fall out again.
Anthralin, a non-specific irritant, also promotes hair growth. So, for people with alopecia areata, many doctors recommend the use of minoxidil and anthralin in combination. Furthermore, the affected area should be massaged with a combination of thyme oil, rosemary oil and lavender oil and within a short time, the person can see the new hairs growing. Another natural remedy that is also effective is onion juice.