With alopecia areata, does hair grow back on its own?

First off, understand that alopecia areata is not a problem of the hair. Alopecia areata is merely a symptom of the real issue of a malfunctioning immune system that mistakenly attacks your body’s natural hair growth process and cycle.

Your hair is probably always trying to go through its natural and normal course of growth-shed but it has no chance of doing so very well because your immune system keeps killing it off, the same way it protects you by killing off invaders, viruses, bacteria, and pathogens.

Therefore, the key is in restoring the balance of your immune system so that it is not only strong, but also strong in attacking the ‘right’ things.

You can support your immune system in ‘doing its job’ so that it recognises your hair as part of our body, not as invaders that it needs to attack, by helping support its natural immune modulation abilities. Immune modulation is made up of two main components: (1) immuno-stimulators and (2) immuno-supppressors.

Immuno stimulators are what we need when our body senses threats from infectious agents, or cancer cells developing. Our immune cells launch their weapons to fight off these threats, a process known as acute inflammation (good inflammation). And immuno suppressors must then recognise when the fight is over and stop the fight. Problems occur when they don’t stop the fight when the fight is over, sending our body into a chronic inflammation state.

Now, immuno modulation is a process that regulates these two components, so that our body is able to effectively turn on and off inflammation as it needs to.

Certain plants have been studied to posses potential bioactive compounds that are capable of immuno-modulation. Polysaccharides from certain plants have prompted researchers to study their physical properties and potential use.

Mushrooms are distinguished as an important food containing immuno-modulating compounds. These compounds belong mostly to polysaccharides, especially β-Glucans (beta-glucans).

A dermatologist can also give you steroid injections which reduce the immune response locally and that usually interrupts the auto-immune response, allowing the hair to regrow. However, there is no guarantee that the auto-immune response won’t start again in that or another area, and you can’t or shouldn’t use steroid injections in the same area frequently, as this can cause thinning of the skin and other problems.

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