Maintaining a Healthy Scalp
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Whether you have already had your scalp pigmentation, whether a permanent application (20 years) or temporary (2-7 years), you can still be suffering from the same effects you had before your procedure. And you now must be more aware than before to help maintain the longevity of your scalp pigmentation. Many things including poor diet, stress, medications, pollutants and general improper care of the scalp will contribute to the pre-mature aging of your application, and in some case, continued hair loss. You want to keep as much hair as you presently have, and perhaps regrow some back. This article will also assist you to reduce scalp shine.
Maintaining a healthy scalp is not as simple as just shampooing regularly. After all, you are already suffering from hair loss and may be continuing to do so. An unhealthy scalp can be itchy, flaky or oily and scaly. In most cases, these are the early signs of hair loss.
CLEANSE THE SCALP – Human scalps naturally secrete an oil called “sebum” from the sebaceous gland. Fresh sebum protects the skin and moisturizes the hair. However, sebum combines with other oils, pollutants, cosmetic products and dead skin cells. If a combination of sebum and other materials is left to build up it can embed into the scalp. When too much sebum builds up on the scalp, it eventually hardens and hinders the growth of healthy hair and causes scalp shine. Hair that falls out is not replaced as it normally would be due to the clogged follicles. The end result is thinning hair and eventual hair loss. It is important that you remove this layer on a weekly basis.
The first task is to properly cleanse the scalp by thoroughly cleaning the pores. A good clarifying shampoo will help to remove embedded dirt and sebum buildup, but only use one per week. Take your time and really massage the shampoo gently in small circles onto your scalp using warm water (never hot) with the pads of your fingertips….never scratch vigorously with your fingernails. Scalp massage increases blood flow and will stimulate the hair follicles in the scalp. When drying the scalp, blot with the towel and never rub.
However, DO NOT use a shampoo that is meant for oily hair every day, it will eventually lead to your scalp producing more sebum.
AFTERCARE PRODUCTS – Some scalp pigmentation providers require you use their mandatory aftercare products. These personal care products require FDA approval which can take years. (Tattoo pigments/inks are not regulated). See this link:
Therefore, these “special” products are merely relabeled off-the-shelf shampoos and moisturizers for self-promotion and to create residual income (not to mention infringement upon the legal brand). These products can cost you as much as $150 monthly when you can be just using a mild shampoo such as Johnson’s Baby Shampoo. If you have dry scalp, Vaseline Intensive Care or Lubriderm are recommended. Because of the permanence and durability of the ACHM2® and ACHM2.5, there are no “special” aftercare products. Just continue your daily routine, free of required use of any relabeled and self-promoting products. More savings on the client’s end.
This is an example of a client not following the specific ACHM2® and ACHM2 After Care Instructions. The After Care was reviewed with the client, as well as being supplied with a written copy and signed by the client. All clients are to wait a full thirty days to allow for natural curing of the pigment. A few days after the application, the client phoned to advise us that he felt his application was too dark and that he consulted with a friend (a “tattoo expert”) who advised him to use tattoo acid on his scalp and hairline to lighten the ACHM2® and ACHM2®. This resulted in the entire scalp being prematurely faded and the hairline burned resulting in severe scarring. The client then showed up without an appointment unexpectedly and demanded reapplication and repair of the burned area, claiming that Weston performed a substandard application and that the hairline was off and “too short.” The entire application was compromised due to the client not following instructions and consulting with another “expert.”
DIET – Healthy hair follicles thrive on a balanced (key word is balanced)diet of protein (lean meat), complex carbohydrates, fatty acids and essential vitamins. Salmon, rich in omega 3 fatty acids and full of lean protein, provides great nutrients for your scalp. To strengthen the hairs’outside shaft, vitamin A, B12 and biotin are found in spinach, eggs and bananas. Brazil nuts offer an excellent source for selenium and oysters for zinc. Iron has also been shown to support follicle regrowth.
A study was done in Japan about 8 years ago comparing the incidence of male pattern baldness in rural Japan and urban Japan. It was noted that the incidence on MPB in urban Japan was 4 times higher than that of rural Japan, and that diet played a major role. More urban Japanese men were embracing the western lifestyle and had increased their diet to substantially more fast foods. So stay away from the fast food franchises to help achieve a more balanced diet and improve the health of your scalp. Stay away from junk foods as snacks and replace with fruits and fresh veggies.
SUPPLEMENTS – You may also not be getting enough minerals from your diet, so consider supplements such as Omega 3, vitamin A, B 12, Biotin, selenium, zinc and iron. However, first check with your physician and don’t overdue anything. You can also ask your doctor to take a blood test to see if you have any vitamin deficiencies.
PRESCRIPTIONS/MEDICATIONS – Many men swear by products such as Rogaine, Propecia and other similar hair growth medications.Many of these medications are known to have unacceptable side effects. If you have already have your procedure, there is really no reason to continue these products. After all, that is why you opted for a pigmentation procedure in the first place, to replace your lost hair.
STRESS – Yes, stress can play a large role in your overall health. Alopecia Areata can be triggered by extreme stress or any traumatic event. Alopecia Areatais small balding patches on the scalp triggered by trauma which in turn create an autoimmune reaction. The hair bulb is attacked by white blood cells which results in the hair falling out. Day-to-day stress can also result in less drastic hair loss over an extended period of time. Join a health club to help relieve some stress or some other medium outlet.
BODY CHEMISTRY – Changes inside your body can affect you on the outside, too. Unhealthy habits such as smoking and excessive alcohol consumption can offset the body’s natural system. Other personal health-related factors can also play a role, such as skin conditions.
SUN – The sun can be one of the biggest factors in the premature aging of your procedure. Use a high SPF sunscreen (45) if you will be spending any extended periods in the sun. Better yet, wear a hat.For overall health risks, we all should be wearing hats in the sun anyway, whether we have pigmentation or not. This is especially paramount during the first year of your application. It can take up to a full year for the pigment carriers to be completely absorbed by the body, leaving only the pigment itself remaining in your scalp.
MOISTURIZE – If your provider has indicated you have dry scalp, it is important to apply a moisturizer daily.
LIFESTYLE CHANGES – Along with diet, exercise is important to maintain the body’s natural balance. We all have stress to some degree, but make a plan to join a health club and find some other medium to relieve stress.
While there are many factors that can affect the health of your scalp and scalp pigmentation. I have only covered some general guidelines here. I firmly believe a healthy regiment of a good diet, excellent personal care, exercise and staying away from the hair loss products will yield a much better result in the long run. You may be surprised if you change your lifestyle in accordance with my above recommendations and findings above, you may also notice some new hair growth.
I am not a doctor and information contained herein is not a substitute for a consultation with a physician. These clinical findings are from my own research records since 2009. Please consult with your own physician before making any drastic changes in your diet and/or lifestyle.
©2014 Mark A. Weston
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