Hair loss is commonly associated with aging, but it can also happen because of other reasons. Pregnancy, stress, infection, chemotherapy, severe illness with fever, syphilis and excess vitamin A may all contribute to the loss of hair. If you are experiencing hair loss due to these or any other causes, herbal teas may help slow down or reverse the process. However, there is a lack of conclusive clinical evidence supporting the use of herbs to treat hair loss. Talk to your doctor before using any herbal teas medicinally.
Jean Valnet, author of "The Practice of Aromatherapy," recommends rinsing your scalp with an infusion of chamomile flowers to reverse balding. Make an infusion with one quart of boiling water and a small handful of chamomile flowers. Steep the flowers for 20 minutes. Strain and let it cool. Pour the cooled infusion over your hair and scalp after washing your hair. Don't rinse out the chamomile. Chamomile is gentle and safe enough for even children and those with sensitive skin, which means you can repeat this treatment daily.
Sage is a traditional folk remedy for balding and memory loss due to advanced age. Apply sage either externally or drink it as an infusion. For a hair rinse, pour one quart of boiling water over 1 ounce of sage leaves and steep for 30 to 45 minutes. For a daily cup of sage tea, boil one cup of water and pour it over 1 tablespoon of dried sage leaves. Steep for 10 minutes and sweeten with honey if desired. Do not use sage medicinally while pregnant.
Hair loss may occur because of mineral deficiencies, which can result from poor diet or difficulty assimilating minerals. According to "The Encyclopedia of Healing Plants," nettles may be a diuretic, meaning that they stimulate urination and help the body eliminate wastes that may clog the system and prevent proper absorption of nutrients. Nettles are also high in essential minerals, including iron, and drinking an infusion of nettles may help make up deficiencies. Nettles are safe for most individuals, but talk to your doctor before taking them medicinally.
Rosemary is a stimulating herb that helps regulate circulation. Drinking rosemary tea may help restore hair loss due to poor circulation. "The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Healing Remedies" also recommends a daily cup of rosemary infusion to help re-grow hair after chemotherapy. There is a lack of conclusive clinical evidence to support this use of rosemary, however. Large doses of rosemary may stimulate menstruation, so avoid using it medicinally when you are pregnant.
Gingko biloba is a tree native to China. The fan-shaped leaves of the gingko tree may help stimulate circulation, especially to the brain and nervous system. By supporting circulation, gingko may also help relieve nervous tension and hair loss that is caused by stress. Increased circulation in the scalp from drinking gingko tea may help restore lost hair. There is a lack of conclusive clinical evidence for the use of gingko for circulation of hair loss. Gingko may be toxic in large doses, so consult a qualified healthcare practitioner before taking it.
- The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Healing Remedies; Norman Shealy MD, Ph.D.
- The Practice of Aroma Therapy; Jean Valnet
- The Encyclopedia of Medicinal Plants; Andrew Chevallier