Alopecia Areata is a sudden onset of hair loss in the head and sometimes all over the body in small scattered patches. This is caused when an auto-immune condition is triggered and the body starts attacking the hair follicle generating cells. In a few cases, the affected areas have seen total regrowth of hair without Alopecia Areata treatment.
People suffering from this condition can rely on Minoxidil, Anthralin, SADBE, DPCP to reduce the rate of hair fall and also stimulate hair growth in a few instances.
Causes of Alopecia Areata
This condition affects both men and women although it is found more frequently in women. In most cases, a person suffering from this condition also has a family member with the same condition.
The chief causes for alopecia is an autoimmune reaction of the body against its own hair cells treating them as the foreign body. It means that the body develops a reaction and fights the hair cells which then fall off.
Best Treatment for Alopecia Areata
Although there are no cent per cent cure or treatment that works for everyone. Depending on the type of alopecia areata, the severity & condition, age and the extent of hair loss, some treatments are very effective on some people.
You might ask if there is no cure then what good are the treatments? Well, the prime goals of these therapies are to stop the hair loss and to help regrow hair.
The various treatments and procedures that are known to cure Alopecia Areata are corticosteroid topical creams & immunosuppressive creams, commonly known as alopecia topical treatments, intra-lesion drug injections, cryotherapy etc.
The non-invasive treatment options are:
- Corticosteroids: Prescribed in the form of an injection, ointment, or oral medicine. Some topical corticosteroids for alopecia areata are Minoxidil, Rogaine, Aldactone etc.
- OTC drugs: Drugs like Minoxidil, Anthralin, clobetasol, and immunosuppressants like Methotrexate are recommended.
- Injections: Injections filled with steroids and immunosuppressants are also used to treat this condition.
Natural or alternative treatments and home remedies
Naturally boosting the immunity of the body to fight off the condition is also recommended. Including the intake of probiotics, topical application of aloe vera, and onion can also be helpful.
- Aromatherapy and Acupuncture to the affected areas are known to show significant results.
- Zinc and Biotin intake through diet is effective. Zinc and Biotin play a major role in hair tissue repair and growth. They help keep the oil glands in check, especially the ones located around the follicles. Hair loss is usually a symptom of zinc and biotin deficiency, zinc supplements can help reduce hair loss and support healthy regrowth. You can get your zinc intake from food like spinach, wheat germ, pumpkin seeds, oysters, and so on.
- Massaging with Coconut oil, castor oil, Jojoba Oil, tea-tree oil, peppermint oil, and rosemary oil is often recommended.
- Massaging the affected area with Onion Juice is also a good practice.
- A diet based approach which focuses on revitalizing the auto-immune protocol is good. This diet focuses on the inclusion of a variety of meat with a combination of different vegetables to catalyze hair growth.
- Photochemotherapy is also recommended as a method of treating this condition. However, the rate of effectiveness and success in the procedure differs on a case to case basis. Hence, it is advisable to consult some of the best alopecia areata specialists in Pune before considering this option.
Treatments for Mild Alopecia Areata
Intralesional Corticosteroid Injections
In this treatment, an intralesional steroid is injected directly into a lesion on or immediately below the skin. Use of this injection yields new hair growth which is usually visible within four weeks.
Who Should Try This?
People suffering from mild Alopecia Areata can take this as its effect is temporary and often mild Alopecia condition improves after using it. If bald patches reappear, they can be reinjected.
Topical minoxidil is used in the treatment of hair loss for both male and females. It is also used to treat alopecia, hair fall due to chemotherapy or after-effects of hair replacement surgery. It’s recommended that adults use one milliliter to the scalp, two times a day. If it’s meant for children, then the use and dose should be determined by a doctor.
Who Should Try This?
Few of the side effects of using Minoxidil is scalp itching, dryness, scaling, flaking, irritation, or burning. If you have alopecia, then inform your doctor about all your medical history including what prescription and nonprescription medications you are taking at present. If you have no heart condition or any other preexisting conditions, you can be prescribed Minoxidil.
Anthralin Cream or Ointment
This ointment is used for the treatment of long-term psoriasis. The cream is a tar-like substance applied to the hairless patches for an hour or so and then washed off. Anthralin Cream slows down the growth of skin cells (of the patch). It is recommended not to use it if the skin is inflamed or irritated.
Who Should Try This?
Hair regrowth is a slow process and this cream will only work in mild Alopecia as there is a possibility of new hair growth in the affected skin patch.
Treatments for Extensive Alopecia Areata
Corticosteroids pills are sometimes prescribed for extensive scalp hair loss such as alopecia totalis and alopecia universalis, to suppress disease activity and regrow hair.
Who Should Try This?
Corticosteroid pills have some side effects. Young adults can usually tolerate it but not adults or aged persons. Also, if you have other conditions like high blood pressure or a weak immune system, then do not opt for this medication.
It is one of the best treatments for alopecia areata and is a highly effective therapy for the same. Doctors believe that it should be the first-choice treatment in adults with Alopecia with scalp patches greater than 50%.
Who Should Try This?
People with weak immunity should definitely go for this therapy. Approximately 40% of patients treated with topical immunotherapy get a better result. Within 6 months, they can see hair regrowth.
Treatment Options for Androgenetic Alopecia
Androgenetic Alopecia (AGA) is a common form of hair loss in both men and women. AGA is a result of genetic predisposition as well as androgen-related. Androgenic Alopecia treatment consists of oral medications, topical applications, procedures like LLLT, and surgeries such as hair transplantation.
Why HairMD for Alopecia Areata Treatment in Pune?
At HairMD, we take pride in the work we do and our patients feel safe, comfortable, and confident when treating their hair-fall-related conditions with us. The collective experience of our specialists bring decades of experience when it comes to treating and managing the symptoms of this condition.
Till date, we have been successful in helping patients of Alopecia areata counting more than 15053+ at our hair loss clinics in Pune, Karad and Kolhapur under the guidance and leadership of Dr Dhananjay Chavan, MBBS, DDV- one of top skin & hair specialist in Pune.
How much will treatment for Alopecia cost in Pune?
The cost for treating Alopecia areata is quite affordable at HairMD and our brand is known for a high success rate in Alopecia areata hair regrowth treatment. Our qualified and experienced team of dermatologists are skilled in identifying the condition and recommending the right treatment for Alopecia for the patient. The exact cost will depend on the mode of treatment chosen and the number of sessions required, schedule a consultation with our doctors for a diagnosis, treatment schedule and costs.
It is not recommended to use any medications or injection without medical supervision. Talk to your dermatologist before opting for alopecia areata treatment. Call HairMD experts today to figure out the exact cause and severity of alopecia. You can also book for an online consultation with our experts. Book a slot today.
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Treatment for Alopecia Areata FAQs
What is the cause of alopecia areata?
Alopecia Areata is caused when the cells in your immune system cannot recognize your own hair follicles and treat them as foreign bodies. This is an autoimmune condition and your cells attack the follicles causing them to fall out. The immune response which has misunderstood the follicles as foreign bodies have to be tackled for treatment.
What are the risk factors for alopecia areata?
- Both men and women under the age of 30 are prone to this condition.
- Men and women who undergo a lot of stress at work are often victims of this condition.
- People with a history of Alopecia in their family are at risk of developing this condition.
- People with autoimmune conditions are exposed to an early onset of Alopecia Areata.
What are the symptoms of alopecia areata?
The symptoms are loss of hair in patches in the head, in the beard and other hair follicles in the body. In most cases, this condition only affects the hair follicles in the head, but in a few rare cases, the condition spreads to all parts of the body, thereby, rendering the patient hairless. Discolouration and fragility in fingernails and toenails are also present in a few cases. Nails also tend to become brittle and break easily.
Will there be any side effects in the treatment for Alopecia Areata?
The possible side effects of treating this condition with Minoxidil are
- Redness or inflammation in the skin
- Uncontrollable itching sensation
- Localized burns
- The colour and texture of your hair changes
The side effects of using corticosteroids for treating the Alopecia differs on a case to case basis. There are instances where patients experienced zero side effects while some had to go through a few changes for a short period.
While these treatments for Alopecia Areata have side effects, consulting your dermatologists on the treatment regimen and dosage can help prevent the onset of these side effects.
Can a lack of vitamin D cause alopecia areata?
Research suggests that people suffering from Alopecia Areata also suffer from low Vitamin D levels. Hence the deficiency could have a role to play to magnify the hair loss in such cases. Getting adequate vitamin D can promote hair regrowth in combination with a dermatologist prescribed treatment plan.
" Correction of physical appearance and making it aesthetically perfect is not a mere status issue, its about making your soul comfortable in your body "
-Dr. Dhananjay Chavan