Natural hair loss prevention treatments start with basic hair care. The following hair care tips offer helpful advice to answer frequently encountered hair care problems. Each year, men and women spend billions of dollars on hair-care products and treatments. Unfortunately, many invest in the wrong products or use them incorrectly. The result can be hair damage. Damaged hair stays damaged until it grows out and is cut off. This can take many months, because your hair grows approximately 1/2 inch each month.
Proper Shampoos & Conditioners
Choose shampoo and conditioner that is right for your hair type.
Price and exotic ingredients bear little or no relation to efficacy. Most conditioning products that claim to nourish hair do nothing of the sort as the ingredients cannot enter the hair unless they contain transformants (molecules small enough to pass into the cortex).
Quaternary ammonium compounds in conditioners that are attracted to damaged sites on the cuticle.
When many such molecules attach to hair, they make it slippery and easy to comb. Protein shampoos do not penetrate your hair, but they do coat it, giving your hair more bulk. A protein shampoo acts as a shampoo and conditioner in one. These products lubricate your hair between washings and help minimize damage from brushing or combing. If you have a regular professional hair care specialist always ask his/her advice.
Tip: Choosing the right conditioner or shampoo for your hair can be a matter of trial and error. Some products may make your hair limp, while others may even dull it with a film. Choose two different brands of shampoo and conditioner that are right for you, alternate use will give the best result.
It is a myth that shampooing increases hair loss. Whether dry or greasy, hair should be washed as often as required to look good, even every day. If you have an oily scalp, frequent shampooing will keep the hair from lying flat, weighted down by the fats in sebum. Very dry hair may be improved by massaging hair with a deep conditioner, covering and leaving on overnight and washing out the next morning.
For proper washing, wet your hair completely with warm water. The first rinsing acts as a pre-wash to remove dust and water-soluble dirt and hair-care products. After the first rinsing apply the shampoo with hand to the oiliest part of the scalp and massage the entire scalp gently, using your fingers instead of your nails as you work the lather outward from your scalp. Try not to tangle the hair, and avoid scrubbing the ends, particularly if your hair is long.
Rinse thoroughly with water. Shampoo can leave a residue that can dry the hair, attract dirt, and irritate the scalp. If you shampoo daily, lather only once, even if you have oily hair. Over- cleansing can create a cycle in which you stimulate oil production and then dry out the hair. If you shampoo less frequently, experiment with one or two sudsings.
Coloring, perming, combing, teasing and shampooing can break the cuticle's long protein chains. The cuticle gets shaggy, and hair becomes rough. Static, due to combing, can develop.
Most modern conditioners contain cationic quaternary ammonium compounds that provide a positive charge which reduces static and makes hair less "fly-away" and more manageable.Some products, particularly those containing benzalkonium chloride as the active ingredient, are good conditioners. Those with added polymers, collagen, balsam, silicones or resins that bond with and coat the hair shaft, may provide a protective film, smooth out the cuticle, reducing snarls and tangles. Conditioners that give "extra body" may contain waxes that, when dry, make it look fuller, some contain oil/fats (e.g., lanolin, mineral) to smooth hair, and a few have humectants that supposedly hold in water content.
Handle With Care
After washing, towel dry by patting gently. Since heat from curling irons and blow-dryers are notorious hair destroyers, to prevent damage, the hair should be dried naturally. If a blower is necessary, use it on a lowest setting and leave your hair slightly damp. If you brush or comb your hair while it is wet, you pull out much more hair than you would by gently untangling it with your fingers and waiting until it is damp or dry before you carefully brush or comb it. An occasional massage with the fingertips will enhance blood flow to the scalp.
Your hair requires gentle handling. Wet hair is especially fragile because it may be stretched. Use a wide-toothed comb to avoid injury to your hair while wet.
Tip: Begin to comb the hair at the ends and remove tangles gently with a wide tooth comb as you work your way to the base of the hair shaft.
Certain hairstyles and treatments can cause hair breakage or root damage. Avoid excessively tight braiding, buns, or ponytails. Do not roll your hair too tightly in curlers. Teasing and back combing should be done gently. Too much exposure to sun, wind, or swimming-pool chemicals will dry out your hair and cause it to knot.
A styling gel or mousse can give your hair more body or thickness. They do not necessarily damage your hair, but you may experience extra dryness, especially at the hair ends.
Use of hot rollers or curling irons gives the best results for coarse hair, but they may damage strands or roots when used to excess. When you use a curling iron always roll in the ends last.
Tip: For safe curling of fine hair, let it air dry and wind it loosely around sponge rollers. Choose a blow dryer with a maximum of 1000 watts if you must use one.
Combs & Brushes
Eliminate metal combs, extra fine teeth combs and those with sharp teeth. Metal combs grab the hair putting more stress on it. The fine tooth combs can also put too much stress on hair even though they are preferred by those with thinning hair due to individual strands being compressed together, (making it appear thicker). Sharp teeth combs can damage the hair when used too aggresively.
Hair bleaches chemically alter the melanin granule in the middle layer of each hair strand. Despite careful treatment, persistent bleaching eventually damages even healthy, strong hair shafts, but it does not injure the roots from which future hair growth takes place.
Hair dyes work more like paint by covering hair strands with color or by mixing with the melanin granules without altering them. Dyes come in temporary form, which eventually wash out, and semi-permanent and permanent forms. Conduct a patch test to check for possible irritation, because a severe allergic reaction to hair dye could cause hair loss.
Permanent waving rearranges the inner hair molecules, breaking and reforming its sulfur bonds, in a step-wise chemical process. Permanent waving is safe for healthy hair, but you may find it results in increased dryness and splitting. Straightening and permanent waving use the same chemical methods to change the properties of hair strands.
It is highly recommended that you have this process done by a qualified, licensed specialist.
Diet and Your Hair
A normal consumption of protein and vitamins are included in almost everyone's diet. There will probably always be health food store that has diet supplements for the prevention of hair loss.
Yet, after Transition spokespersons have consulted with some of the country's leading dermatological experts on hair loss, they have said, "Diet has very little to do with hair loss!" Case studies done as far back as World War II concentration camp victims show that while many were starving... there was little evidence, (if any) of hair loss. The fact is... many prisoners heads were shaved and the hair was sold to wigmakers because it was quality hair. David Whiting M.D., of Baylor Hair Research and Treatment Center states, "It would take a starving Somalian to see a sign of hair loss, if any! " Very sudden "Crash Diets" can cause hair loss known as telogen effluvium. However, generally speaking the hair will grow back after one resumes any kind of a normal diet. If you are taking normal doses of daily vitamins, please continue. If you are taking them specifically for hair loss, save your money! Vitamin A is in fact, known to cause hair loss!
Various claims are made for the value of analysis of hair samples-- measuring its mineral content -- as a means of assessing nutritional status or detecting nutritional deficiencies, but the process has no validity and can be considered one of the many scams aimed at appealing to people concerned about their health. The chance of getting accurate information from a single hair strand is nil. The results are distorted by contamination from sweat, the shampoos, conditioners, sprays and coloring agents used to groom hair, and by the hair's rate of growth. It's highly questionable whether the metal or mineral content of a hair accurately reflects amounts elsewhere in the body.