When I see clients who are having problems with dry, thinning hair, dull and lifeless hair, or a noticeable amount of breakage, the first thing I do is eliminate the obvious antagonists.
Are they heavy users of heat styling tools? Are they highlighting or colouring? Do they have habits that may be contributing to the outside condition of the hair?
If these probabilities are addressed and are not applicable, I begin to ask questions based on their lifestyle and am usually met with a little resistance when the topic of the internal health and hair health connection is brought up.
But the truth is hair quality and strength are indeed a reflection of the internal environment of a human’s body.
Hair quality and strength, rate of growth and thickness all depend on the quality and function of your internal organs.
The scalp consists of follicles and sebaceous gland. The part of hair that is “alive” is under the scalp where you can’t see it. The root of the hair is contained in the follicle. Both the root and follicle are fed by a vein. The vein brings nutrients to the follicle and root. If there are not enough of the right nutrients being carried to feed the follicle and hair, it will be affected in a negative way.
One way to encourage healthy hair growth is by proper nourishment of the body. Again, this is something that is often taken with a grain of salt or its’ importance shrugged off, but hair is indicative of nutritional levels as well. Adequate levels of protein, vitamins, and fatty acids and minerals provide optimal internal health and lead to sustained hair growth.
Deficiencies will generally show up first through hair condition. A mild case of anemia can cause shedding and hair loss. B deficiencies, like biotin, can also affect hair health and retention-these vitamins can become depleted with stress and can leave the hair underfed. Conditions and medication associated with Thyroid issues can also contribute to these problems. Not all hair growth issues stem from deficiencies, but it is a good place to start
When the body is facing stress it will change its processes and priorities. Healthy, oxygenated blood will be diverted away from hair follicles to vital organs if it is needed. The result will be less healthy or slower growing hair. Damaged hair simply does not hinder or stunt the growth rate of your hair. But damaged hair splits and breaks off and limits the retention of hair length. This can sometimes be why certain peoples’ hair “just doesn’t grow”. The rate of hair growth is dependant on the health of the scalp and your body’s internal health. A healthy scalp and body can help produce optimal hair growth.
But be careful! Overloading on one vitamin or supplement too much can cause imbalances of other vitamins and minerals in the body-
An example of this is vitamin A-too much can actually cause hair loss!
Shampoos, products and vitamins do not change the rate of hair growth. The rate of growth depends on what phase of the growth cycle the hair is in. The speed in which hair grows depends on factors like gender, hormones, age, nutrition, and genetics.
If you have damaged hair, avoid manipulation as much as possible. Don’t play with the ends of your hair; touch it as little as possible. If you cannot leave your hair alone, wear it in a braid,and use rollers to create a longer-lasting style so you don’t have to restyle as often.