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Ayurvedic Management of Alopecia


Alopecia, also known as hair loss, is a condition that affects both men and women, leading to partial or complete loss of hair on the scalp or other parts of the body. It can have a significant impact on a person’s self-esteem and overall well-being. Ayurveda, the ancient Indian system of medicine, offers a holistic approach to managing alopecia by addressing the underlying imbalances in the body and promoting hair growth naturally.

What is Alopecia?

Alopecia refers to the loss of hair from the scalp or other parts of the body. It can occur in various forms, including alopecia areata (patchy hair loss), androgenetic alopecia (male/female pattern baldness), or telogen effluvium (temporary hair shedding). Alopecia can be caused by multiple factors, including genetics, hormonal imbalances, nutritional deficiencies, stress, autoimmune conditions, and scalp infections.

Ayurvedic View of Alopecia:

According to Ayurveda, alopecia is primarily attributed to an imbalance in the Pitta and Vata doshas. Pitta represents the fire element and governs metabolism and digestion, including the transformation of nutrients required for healthy hair growth. Imbalanced Pitta can lead to excessive heat in the scalp, resulting in hair loss. Vata represents the air and ether elements and is responsible for the movement and nourishment of the hair follicles. Imbalanced Vata can disrupt the flow of nutrients to the hair follicles, leading to weakened hair roots and subsequent hair loss.

Causes of Alopecia:

  1. Excessive Pitta dosha leading to inflammation and heat in the scalp.
  2. Imbalanced Vata dosha affecting the nourishment and circulation to the hair follicles.
  3. Genetic predisposition.
  4. Hormonal imbalances, such as increased androgen levels.
  5. Nutritional deficiencies, especially of iron, zinc, and vitamin D.
  6. Stress, anxiety, and emotional disturbances affecting the overall health of the body.
  7. Scalp infections, fungal or bacterial, compromising hair follicle health.

Symptoms of Alopecia:

  1. Gradual thinning of hair on the scalp or other body parts.
  2. Formation of bald patches or complete baldness.
  3. Increased hair shedding during brushing, washing, or combing.
  4. Scalp itching, redness, or inflammation in some cases.
  5. Changes in hair texture, such as dryness or brittleness.

Ayurvedic Treatment Approach for Alopecia:

Panchakarma Therapy:

  • Shirodhara: A therapeutic procedure involving the gentle pouring of warm medicated oil on the forehead, promoting relaxation and reducing stress.
  • Shiroabhyanga: Head massage with Ayurvedic oils to improve blood circulation and nourishment to the scalp.
  • Nasya: Nasal administration of medicated oils to balance doshas and promote hair health.
  • Basti: Enema therapy to detoxify the body and balance the doshas.

Herbal Remedies:

  • Bhringraj (Eclipta alba): Known as “King of Hair,” it promotes hair growth, strengthens hair roots, and nourishes the scalp.
  • Amla (Emblica officinalis): Rich in vitamin C, it strengthens hair follicles, prevents premature graying, and promotes hair growth.
  • Brahmi (Bacopa monnieri): Enhances blood circulation to the scalp, nourishes hair follicles, and reduces stress and anxiety.
  • Jatamansi (Nardostachys jatamansi): Calms the mind, reduces stress, and promotes healthy hair growth.
  • Aloe Vera (Aloe barbadensis): Soothes the scalp, reduces inflammation, and supports hair growth.

Lifestyle and Dietary Recommendations:

  • Follow a Pitta and Vata pacifying diet, including fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and healthy fats.
  • Stay hydrated by drinking an adequate amount of water and herbal teas.
  • Practice stress management techniques like yoga, meditation, and deep breathing exercises.
  • Avoid excessive use of hair styling products and heat treatments that can damage the hair.
  • Maintain good scalp hygiene and avoid excessive scratching or trauma to the scalp.

Home Remedies for Alopecia:

  • Apply a mixture of coconut oil and curry leaves paste to the scalp. Leave it on for an hour before washing off.
  • Massage the scalp with warm castor oil or amla oil for 10-15 minutes, then leave it overnight and rinse the next morning.
  • Prepare a hair mask using yogurt, amla powder, and fenugreek powder. Apply it to the scalp and hair, leave it on for 30 minutes, and rinse off.

Note: It is advisable to consult with a qualified Ayurvedic practitioner before starting any Ayurvedic treatment regimen to ensure it is suitable for your individual constitution and condition.

Dr. Ram Mani Bhandari
Dr. Ram Mani Bhandari


Registered Member of AAA

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