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How to use Essential Oils to Treat Thinning Hair

Aromatherapy dates back to the Egyptians and has been used for centuries to treat
a variety of bodily conditions. Losing hair causes both women and men anxiety and
has generated a multi-million dollar industry. But studies show that inexpensive,
home-grown remedies might just be the best answer. Aromatherapy consists of
concentrated flower extracts, leaves and roots from different plants that aid
regeneration.

This kind of hair loss is referred to in medical terms as Alopecia Areata. It's a
patchy kind of baldness thought to be related to an autoimmune disorder. Scottish
dermatologists, including Isabelle Hay and colleagues from the Aberdeen Royal
Infirmary, ran a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial on 86 people
with alopecia using the following essential oils:

Thyme vulgaris, Thyme (2 drops, 88 mg)


Lavandula angustifolia, Lavender (3 drops, 108 mg)
Rosmarinus officinalis, Rosemary (3 drops, 114 mg)
Cedrus atlantica, Atlas Cedar Wood (2 drops, 94 mg)

These oils were mixed in a carrier oil which was a combination of 3 ml of jojoba
and 20 ml of grapeseed oil. The control group received unscented carrier oils
alone with no essential oils added.

The oils were massaged into the scalp for a minimum of 2 minutes and a warm towel
was wrapped around the head to aid absorption of the oils. Patients were advised
to use this technique every night.

Professional photographs of each patient's scalp were taken at baseline, three and
seven months. Observed changes over this time period served as the primary outcome
measure. Outcomes were also measured by mapping bald patches and severity of
alopecia with a four-point scale.

At the end of 7 months the results were impressive: 44% (16 of the 35 patients)
had noticeable improvement compared to 15% (6 of 28 patients) in the control or
placebo group. The average hair regrowth with the essential oils was 104 square cm
compared with nearly zero for those in the control group. (see Hay, Isabelle C.,
et al. ?Randomized Trial of Aromatherapy: Successful Treatment for Alopecia
Areata.? Arch. Dermatol. 1998; 134:1349)

Is 44% response rate worth the effort to try these essential oils? It's important
to note that according to the authors of this experiment, this percentage is
approximately the same response rate dermatologists expect with standard medical
therapies.

The results indicate that aromatherapy is a safe and effective treatment for this
kind of hair loss. Trying this alternative treatment is a lot less expensive,
requires fewer or no doctor visits and has a lower risk of side effects. So what
have you got to lose?