Having thick, glossy, and lustrous locks is not just a symbol of beauty but also a sign of good health. Did you know that the quality and texture of your hair are greatly affected by your overall health? Malnutrition, congenital heart disease, cancer, chronic illness, and hormonal imbalances are among the various physical conditions that can lead to weakened hair and excessive hair loss (1).
That is why simply switching shampoos or using a new hair care product rarely helps with serious hair loss. To stop hair thinning and get thicker, fuller hair, one needs to adopt a holistic approach to health and nutrition combined with a proper hair care regimen. Let us look at the various causes of thinning hair to better understand your hair care needs.
In This Article
What Causes Thinning Hair?
Chronic illness, vitamin deficiencies, and even certain hairstyles can lead to excessive hair loss. Here are a few common causes of thinning hair:
Hereditary hair loss is the most common cause of hair loss worldwide. Both men and women suffer from this type of hair loss known as androgenic alopecia, male pattern baldness, and female pattern baldness. Hereditary hair loss usually sets in with aging and is gradual. In men, it is mostly characterized by a receding hairline and bald spots, while in women, there is a diffuse thinning of hair, especially along with the crown of the scalp.
- Medical Conditions
Various medical conditions can lead to excessive hair fall and hair thinning in both men and women. Such hair loss might be temporary or permanent. Scalp infections like ringworm, autoimmune conditions like alopecia areata, and the hair-pulling disorder called trichotillomania are some medical conditions that could lead to thinning hair.
- Nutritional Deficiencies
Deficiencies of vitamin B12, vitamin D3, folic acid, certain amino acids, and vital minerals can cause your hair to fall or thin out (2). Usually, taking supplements to cure such deficiencies helps reverse hair fall and promote regrowth after a few months.
- Hormonal Changes
Your hair health is regulated by the hormones in your body. Hormonal imbalances often manifest in the form of excessive hair fall and hair thinning. Hormonal changes due to pregnancy, childbirth, and menopause can cause hair loss in women. Thyroid imbalances also have a negative impact on hair health (3). Hair loss due to hormonal imbalances is often temporary.
- Medications And SupplementsÂ
Hair thinning is a common side effect of numerous medications and supplements. Chemotherapy drugs cause extensive hair thinning and hair loss, as do certain drugs used for treating heart problems, arthritis, and gout (4), (5). Some birth control pills can also cause hair thinning. Drug-induced hair loss is often temporary. Regrowth is observed in many cases once the patient stops using the drug.
A major physical or emotional shock is claimed to lead to a gradual thinning of hair over several months. The traumatic incident could be physical, emotional, or both. People often notice a general thinning of hair weeks after undergoing surgery, an accident, a divorce, or a loved one’s death. This type of hair loss is temporary.
- Hairstyles And Treatments
Some hairstyles that pull your hair tight, such as ponytails or cornrows, can lead to traction alopecia, a type of hair loss. Hot oil treatments and chemical treatments like bleaching can also trigger hair loss. Even though such hair loss is usually temporary, it could be permanent if scarring occurs.
Now that you know the various factors that can to hair thinning or hair loss, it is natural to wonder if hair thinning is reversible. Find out below!
Is It Possible To Restore Thinning Hair?
Thinning hair can be very distressing for the individuals experiencing it. Thankfully, here is some good news â hair loss, in many cases, is reversible if caught in time. To determine the root cause behind your hair loss, it is advised to get a proper medical check-up done. Your blood work results will reveal if you suffer from any nutritional deficiencies or hormonal imbalances that may be responsible for your hair loss. Consult your doctor or a trichologist for professional advice on how to reverse hair thinning and get thicker hair.
Here are a few tips to make your hair look fuller and thicker.
Effective Tips For Getting Thicker Hair
Every individualâs hair is different, and what might work for one might not be that effective for another. However, some basic rules of healthy hair like eating a nutritious diet and maintaining a proper hair care routine apply to everyone. Try these easy tips, and we are sure you will observe a marked difference in your hair health after a few weeks.
Micronutrients like vitamins and minerals play a key role in determining your hair health. Deficiencies of iron, vitamin D, amino acids, folate, vitamin B12, and selenium can have a drastic effect on your hair health and may lead to weak hair and hair fall (2). The first step towards growing thicker hair is to eat a well-balanced diet that is rich in these micronutrients. Be sure to include hemp seeds, flax seeds, pumpkin seeds, almonds, green leafy vegetables, fresh fruits, and a variety of beans and legumes in your diet.
Our food alone is often not enough to meet all our nutritional requirements, especially if you have tested positive for any vitamin or mineral deficiency. In such a case, ask your doctor about suitable supplements. Vitamin D3 deficiency is common across the globe and has been linked to hair loss (2). Check with your doctor if your levels are normal and start taking a supplement under their guidance if you have a deficiency.
3. Use Volumizing Hair Products
Volumizing hair products are formulated to make your hair look fuller and thicker. If thinning hair is affecting your sense of confidence, you should consider investing in a good-quality volumizing shampoo and conditioner. Volumizing shampoos are formulated to provide your hair with a bounce to create an illusion of fullness. While they do not make your hair thicker, they do make your hair look bouncier and fuller.
4. Opt For Oil Massages
Massaging your scalp with natural oils stimulates the hair follicles and can promote hair growth (6). Besides boosting hair growth, using oils helps make your hair softer and easier to manage. Oils work as conditioners and sealants as well. Make oil massages a regular part of your hair care routine to experience better scalp and hair health in the long run. Coconut oil, olive oil, almond oil, jojoba oil, and grapeseed oil can be used for massaging your scalp.
5. Choose The Right Hair Care Products
The importance of choosing the right products for your hair can never be overemphasized! Different hair types have different needs, and you should choose products that have been specifically formulated for your hair type. While several effective hair care products are available in the market, you can also choose to go the natural way and make your own DIY hair care products customized to cater to your unique hair care needs.
6. Consult A Dermatologist
Experiencing excessive hair loss can cause extreme distress and affect your mental health. It can also be a sign of a serious underlying medical condition. If you are experiencing hair loss for several months and no remedy seems to be working, it is time to seek professional advice. Consult a dermatologist. They will examine your hair and scalp and help you deal with conditions like hair loss, breakage, alopecia, and trichotillomania (7).
7. Focus On Holistic Health Care
Hair health is intricately connected to other aspects of your physical and emotional well-being. Simply switching hair care products is not enough to make your hair grow thicker. A holistic approach to hair health is recommended to improve and sustain the quality of your hair over a prolonged period. Include holistic health care practices like meditation, exercise, emotional healing, yoga, etc., in your lifestyle to improve your overall physical and mental health (8).
8. Include Essential Oils In Your Hair Care Routine
Essential oils have been in use in cosmetology for a long time. Many essential oils like lavender oil, peppermint oil, and rosemary oil are known for promoting hair growth in humans and have effectively treated hair loss (9). Make a fragrant massage oil by mixing 4-5 drops of peppermint or lavender essential oil with two tablespoons of either olive or coconut oil to make an anti-hair fall treatment. You can also mix a few drops of your favorite essential oil in your shampoo or conditioner.
9. Ask Your Doctor For A Minoxidil Prescription
Minoxidil is an FDA-approved drug prescribed for treating baldness. Topical minoxidil is often used to treat androgenetic alopecia and other hair-related conditions. It has been proven for its efficacy in treating baldness and promoting hair regrowth (10). If you are deeply bothered by your thinning hair, consult your doctor and ask for a minoxidil prescription. While minoxidil might not work for everyone, it is generally seen to be effective in making hair thicker and fuller. It is available in the forms of tablets, liquid, and foam.
Wondering how long it takes for your hair to become thicker? Find out in the next section!
How Long Does It Take For Your Hair To Become Thicker?
Growing thicker hair from the roots can take a few weeks to a few months. If you have thinning hair and are looking to reverse it, you need to adopt a holistic approach to hair care to restore your hairâs thickness.
Be patient and commit yourself to a regular hair care regimen that includes hot oil massages. If you are consistent with your hair care practices, you will begin to notice your hair getting thicker within a few months of starting the treatments.
We have outlined a few helpful tips below that you can follow to achieve the thick, long hair of your dreams.
Easy Tips For Thicker Hair: Dos And Donâts
- Donât wash your hair too frequently, and try going for longer periods between washes.
- Ditch heat-styling tools like blowdryers, flat irons, and curling irons as they dry out and damage your hair.
- Avoid chemical treatments and bleaching.
- Stay hydrated and drink enough water.
- Cover your hair with a hat or a scarf when stepping out in the sun to protect it from UV damage.
- Brush your hair gently twice a day. Avoid over-brushing.
- Use gentle and non-toxic hair care products.
- Avoid brushing your hair when it is soaking wet.
- Get a trim regularly, preferably every 6-8 weeks.
- Choose a hairstylist who understands your hair type.
- Opt for a shorter hair cut as it makes your hair look fuller.
Getting thicker and healthier hair is a dream for many. Fortunately, it is not difficult to make your hair thicker. All your hair needs is some regular loving care in the form of oil massages, volumizing shampoos and conditioners, and a well-balanced diet that is rich in good fats, vitamins, and minerals.
Consistency is the key here â you may see results only after around 3-4 months. So, be sure to follow a regular hair care routine if you want hair that is thicker, glossier, and healthier.
- 12 Natural Ways To Enhance Hair Growth And Thickness
- 11 Effective Home Remedies And Tips To Control Hair Fall
- 10 Home Remedies + Prevention Tips For Thinning Hair
- How To Keep Your Hair Healthy â 20 Tips + Home Remedies
- How To Make Your Hair Grow Faster â 15 Simple Tips
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- Hair and nutrition
- Hair loss
- The Role of Vitamins and Minerals in Hair Loss: A Review
- A Descriptive Study of Alopecia Patterns and their Relation to Thyroid Dysfunction
- Hair loss in chemotherapy: Overview
- Drug-induced hair loss and hair growth. Incidence, management and avoidance
- Anti-Inflammatory and Skin Barrier Repair Effects of Topical Application of Some Plant Oils
- Assessment of hair and scalp disorders
- Effects of Yoga on Mental and Physical Health: A Short Summary of Reviews
- Randomized trial of aromatherapy. Successful treatment for alopecia areata
- Minoxidil and its use in hair disorders: a review
- Hair and nutrition