TCM and Hair Loss

Traditional Chinese Medicine, often abbreviated to TCM, is an ancient medical system that takes a holistic approach to ensure overall well-being. It treats both root causes, which may or may not be immediately apparent to the untrained practitioner, as well as the problematic symptoms.  

It can be used to treat many conditions, including hair loss. Both men and women can suffer from hair loss, which can be very distressing, leading to problems with confidence and self esteem.

TCM Targets in Hair Loss Treatment

Practitioners will look at other aspects of your health, appearance, and lifestyle in treating hair loss. 

TCM can help to prevent more hair loss, stimulate re-growth of lost hair, and help with the initial causes of the hair loss. It can also help with the stress, discomfort, and unhappiness that are often associated with going bald and loosing hair.

TCM can also assist with lackluster, dull, and limp hair.

Healthy, beautiful hair begins from within the body, and TCM practitioners understand which treatments will work best for an individual to promote a healthy head of hair. The condition of a person’s hair reflects what is happening inside the body.

Many people make the mistake of buying expensive hair nourishing and conditioning products. Whilst these can enhance the appearance of existing hair, they do little to address growth problems; hair is already dead. It is not a live part of the body. Such products coat the hair with moisturizers, lubricants, and other elements.

Growth must be tackled from within. TCM can also be used to tackle problems with hair becoming grey prematurely.  

The thickness and strength of hair are also indicative of the internal state of one’s body. They reflect the condition of organs and vital substances. 

Reasons of Hair Loss According to TCM

TCM principles state that the liver and kidneys are the two organs that most influence hair quality. In TCM, hair is seen as an actual extension of the blood. 

There are many reasons that people suffer from hair loss. These can include stress, depression, anemia, alopecia, liver disease, kidney problems, auto-immune disorders, eating disorders, thyroid problems, hormonal imbalances, viral infections, fungal infections, medications, toxins, and others. Aging and hereditary factors can also be an issue.

Some skin conditions, such as dandruff, dry skin, and psoriasis can damage the hair follicles and have an effect on hair. 

External factors can also lead to poor hair condition and hair loss. Irritants and pollutants can be a big problem. Excessive exposure to the sun, extremes of temperature and climate changes, styling, chemical treatments, such as colouring, perms, and bonding, and chlorine in swimming pools, are all amongst things that can affect one’s hair from the outside.

Recommendations of TCM Practitioners 

TCM practitioners will work with a client to achieve the best results.

Diet is a major consideration. TCM practitioners will generally recommend a dietary plan that is rich in essential fatty acids, proteins, and minerals. Supplements may be recommended. Herbal therapy may also be used, including, for example, quine fruit, ginseng, foti root, he shou wu, rehmannia root, dong quai root, gotu kola, and gastrodia rhizome. Others include white peony, Chinese foxglove, liquorice, and Sichuan lovage.


TCM practitioners will recommend reducing consumption of toxins. This includes alcohol, caffeine, nicotine, and illegal drugs.  

Exercise promotes overall wellbeing, and can therefore assist with the condition of one’s hair. Likewise, adequate sleep also plays a big part in a healthy scalp.

Acupuncture can be very effective in promoting healthy hair. Small, fine needles are inserted into the skin at certain points of the body to cleanse and tonify the kidneys and liver. Acupuncture can also be used on the scalp itself to encourage blood flow to the area, which in turn stimulates the hair follicles and enhances growth and re-growth. Acupressure can be used in the same way, by applying pressure at certain parts of the body. The main difference between acupuncture and acupressure is that in the latter no needles are inserted into the body and the skin is not broken.

Head massages can also help to improve blood flow to the scalp.

If you are suffering from hair loss problems, why not seek the guidance of a trained and professional TCM practitioner? If, like many people, you spend lots of money and products and treatments, why not invest a little for the inside. Not only will your hair benefit, but you will likely notice an increase in your overall health and well being.