16 May 2011
OK. I'm 30. Was diagnosed with RA at the age of 2. No that's not a typo. I've been on Metho for about 5 years now. There are bouts of hair loss. You'll have times when it seems you loose quite a bit, and it's scary to think you'll go completely bald. (See me - crying in the shower after two months) Other times you'll see that it's leveled out and everything is fine. It will be, but be prepared to go into hair loss mode again. I have long hair - waist length. I'm particular about my hair anyway, but when I started to lose it, I became obsessed with fighting it. I've found that the best way to be able to keep as much of it as possible is to treat it like the living thing it is.
Number one: I got myself a good folic acid suppliment. I have been on Folgard with my Metho, which is vitamin B for fatigue and folic acid for hair loss. In addition to that, I add an over the counter folic acid suppliment, because the Metho will seem to suck the stuff right out of my system. This has helped with thickness and loss, both. Number two: Not so commonly used is a good dose of Vitamin D to help vein and artery health. Your hair is protein. And it comes from your blood vessels. I've found helping delivery of nutrients is kind of important. Number three: KEEP IT CLEAN!!! I wash everyday, but I use a SUPER moisturizing shampoo and conditioner. A moderately priced one to try is Aveno Daily Moisturizing or Dove Intense Therapy. I alternate these with a shampoo and conditioner formulated to combat hairloss called Nioxin. I substitute the Nioxin about once every three days, this stuff is expensive and it smells a tiny bit mediciney (see obsessed). Best bet for cost on this is to make friends with your hairdresser and see if she'll supply to you for a discounted rate. If your hair gets too oily (mine did for a little while when I started using Remicaid as well), use a clarifying shampoo to remove gunk and then wash like normal. Number four: If you are still having troubles, there is a suppliment made by Natures Cure (I think, or Nature's Bounty) called Hair, Skin, and Nails. In addition to helping with hair growth, this will help the growth of your nails and you'll see a difference in your skin with this also. I get ridges in my nails due to the RA, and this helps keep them from splitting and becoming painful.
I have some don'ts for you as well... DO NOT: Be afraid to brush your hair during the day - this spreads the oils from your scalp down the hair shaft, and stimulates the scalp thusly promoting growth. Brush your hair while blowdrying - This is a big no no! Style in any way on the highest setting of whatever appliance you are using. Ever get out of the shower without applying a leave in protectant to your hair (preferably one with an spf of atleast 15) before it dries. Use styling products with alcohol as the first ingredient-this will dry your hair out. Go to bed without brushing your hair first. Be afraid to massage your scalp in the shower (not only does this help you relax, but it stimulates hair growth). Use an uncovered rubber band to pull your hair back, if applicable. (Um, Ouch! and this will cause major breakage)
In male pattern baldness, saw palmetto extract has been proven to reverse hair loss, but I haven't gone as far as to try that one... so I haven't done any research on this. :)
This information might not help you, but I hope it does. I hate for anyone to have to go through what I go through, but I'd like to be able to help in any way I can. If you're curious of the cost... I personnally spend approximately $150.00 per month on hair care total (suppliments and products). It's not fun, but it keeps me from looking like a chemo patient. Feel free to respond if you have more questions...