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Treating Alopecia with marijuana
A Woman’s View of Medical Marijuana
November 5, 2013
Can pot help you ‘poop’?
November 13, 2013

Alopecia areata is hair loss on the scalp, as well as other areas of the body, and may be temporary, or permanent. It occurs when the immune system attacks hair follicles, and may be brought on by severe stress. Marijuana has been shown effective in treating the underlying causes of alopecia areata, and may be able to slow or stop progression of the condition.

Cannabis has been long known to help treat autoimmune diseases and decrease inflammation through activation of the CB2 receptors present in the immune system. By activating CB1 receptors in the nervous system, marijuana has also been shown to lower stress that can damage hair and wreak havoc elsewhere in the body.

While there hasn’t been much research into the subject of treating alopecia areata with cannabinoids, it would be very interesting to see the results of a study using a topical cream to treat the local autoimmune and inflammatory processes, as well as inhaled or ingested cannabis to decrease psychological stress causing the condition.

Treating hair loss with cannabis may work for you, or at the very least, make it more bearable to suffer from. Let us know in the comments section!

Peter Trzos, MD
Peter Trzos, MD
Medical doctor and MPO board member.

63 Comments

  1. Jenn says:

    Oh Will, I’m so sorry this has happened to you! It’s been a year since I was diagnosed with alopecia areata. I’ve had many many cortisone shots on my head. While it quickens the re-growth, it does not prevent future spots from appearing. It is a frustrating and stressful deficiency and the stress even makes it worse! You never know when it is going to happen and there is no approved cure as of yet. And the fact that yours is happening all over just makes me want to cry. I do hope you have the opportunity to try the THC oil and I hope it helps you! I wish you the best and remember you are beautiful.

  2. Lee says:

    I am 16 and I have alopecia universalist and of course everyone knows the teenage years! Everything is brutal and just mean. Anyways, I’ve had alopecia for about 2 years now and I grew out my hair until I got my job and my boss yelled at my on a daily basis, I also think the stress of sports is causing this. I am going to ask out a girl and hopefully it will work! I’ve tried marijuana couple of times and it’s kind of working hopefully it keeps growing back!

    • Ag says:

      I live with it for years I am a 23 year old female at 11 and 12 I has to wear a wig after my brother ex girl friend had gave me a relaxer for middle school picture day I had to wear one all the way til I was 14 15 I looked Jason by the head… I started smoking weed and my hair start growning back I had stop for a whole n I saw a diff in my hair.,. I am now 23 n I started smoking weed again and my edges n spots in my hair grew back I believe it’s because weed ease to mind n keep us from stressing that’s why I believe the hair grows.., but I also had to get shots when I was 11 n 12 to it it only help a lil bit

  3. Glen says:

    My friend smokes pot…I don’t.. He said try it…I got nothing to loose…my hair is growing back slowly all hair.After 2 months only smoke on weekend’s. I don’t know why but its working…..

    • Jon says:

      Hi glen, I wish it worked that way. If cannabis was the secret cure, like it is for so many other things, then smoking 8x/month wouldn’t do the trick. What might do the trick is applying Cannabis oil topically before bed every night.

  4. Melissa Brunner, Allies Mom says:

    Please keep me updated on any new posts…thanks!

  5. lorr says:

    My partner has had bad alopecia areata for nearly 9 years, since the age of 23.
    He went through the usual nhs treatments for the first few years with no success, so he just gave up hope.
    He started taking cannabis oil daily for chronic inflammation fatigue and autoimmune issues. He was taking it daily for about a month when we noticed his hair growing back in!! After about 8 weeks he now has about 97% of his head fully covered, in the 9 years since it started he’s probably never had over 60% hair coverage.
    The oil has helped all the conditions he originally took it for and this was just a bonus surprise side effect!!

  6. 3ric says:

    I too have alopecia areata and i’m only 18. High school isn’t cool without hair or eyebrows.

    So i’m gonna try the oil.
    Once i’m at 100%, should I continue treatment or just sit back and relax?

  7. Toni says:

    I’ve been smoking weed daily for 5 years.
    It was around 3-4 months ago where I had found out that I have alopecia. I had my first injection on my scalp 2 months ago and miraculously my hair started growing back within the first month.

    I 100% believe marijuana helps.

  8. Jake says:

    Can you specifically tell me the kind of oil he used? Was is high cbd or high thc content? Was it extracted from hemp or cannabis?

    • Zaheer says:

      Hi Jake
      Did you find out exactly what was used?
      I also suffer from alopecia areata and would love to try CBD oil.

  9. heather higgins says:

    My 9 year has alopecia and has since he was a toddler. I’ve always refused steroid injections and look forward to finding an alternative. I’ve found a product with many success stories in regards to hair regrowth in alopecia patients, Plexus, however I’ve yet to implement to regimen into my sons diet and am much more interested in the benefits of cannabis oil and from what i gather the best way would be to use it as a salve on the scalp. any advice in a cannabis treatment option would be greatly welcomed! thank you

  10. Erin says:

    Hi, I am a 40 year old female that lost her hair at age 12 due to alopecia. I had tried all the medical treatments in the past without any luck. I have smoked a joint a night for the past year just to relax and have fun. In the last 6 months I have noticed my hair growing back but had no idea why. I read a book about marijuana recently that stated the use of marijuana for autoimmune disorders. I would never have guessed that it would work but it does. I do not have a full head of hair but what I would call peach fuzz – but I was completely bald before. I hope that my hair continues to grow in.

  11. Jacob Earl says:

    hello! I also have alopecia universalis and am 16. I also use marijuana on a daily basis and it helps me relieve the stress of having alopecia and also seems to help hair grow back! If you are ever trying to talk to someone just hit me up at monjf10@gmail.com

  12. Adam Freeman says:

    Yeah bro, I’ve got alopecia and have suffered since the age of 4, I’m 17, smoke cannabis in my free time and I have never felt better in my life. Although the progress is slow it definitely means something. My doctor said he was amazed by the fact his microscope picked up tiny blonde hairs in the follicles. Asked me if I have been taking anything and had to say no hahahaha (living in UK)

  13. ricardo says:

    I have alopecia areata not one hair on my body
    Since last year I had awesome as long hair that everyone loved me for I’m only 16and I will smoke 1000bags of pot if it helps me grow my hair back HOPE IT WORKS TRYING SOON

  14. JEFF says:

    My alopecia came during my sophmore year of high school (probably one of the worst times.. i know). Generally people wanted to know what it was and why it was there. I too were one of them people. It started with one patch, which grew to become more. I have experienced regrowth in some areas, but i have also experienced relapse. Which really sucks might i say! I didn’t attend most of the dancing events (including prom) simply because i didn’t feel “beautiful enough”. I’m in college now (new setting.. same problems). I approve of marijuana of marijuana use, illinois why can’t you?

    MERRY CHRISTMAS !

  15. Kyle says:

    When the hair grows back, does it stay or fall out again?

  16. Alison Christie says:

    I’m 17 and I’ve alopecia since I was 6. I tried many treatment as a child and found non of them worked so I decided to be comfortable with it. I recently started smoking marijuana and I’ve found some hairs have come up and I’ve never had a hair since I lost them all. I’m wondering is this because of the marijuana? If anyone could help me on this that’d be great! Thank you.

  17. Marisa says:

    I have had Alopecia universalis for 6 years.. Very interested in any homeopathic cure!!

  18. Abel says:

    Guys, I refused to believe but now i can say its true. MARIJUANA will help if not cure alopecia. Since i started smoking 90% regrowth and only going up.

  19. Abel says:

    Since i started smoking i started seeing hairgrowth as well, now im at about 90% regrowth. Gd Luck.

  20. Maddi says:

    When I was in 4th grade I lost my hair to alopecia areata. At the time I lost all of it in patches I wore tons of hats and have a very nice wig that I would also wear after my hair fell out it grew back shortly after but I would still often loose patches. The middle of my junior year I read something online saying weed cured alopecia. So I decided to give it a try! I just graduated highschool still smoking weed and all the patches that I was missing have all been growing back! WEED CURES ALOPECIA!

  21. Kane says:

    How much is cannabis oil?

  22. Goldengurl10 says:

    I use it for alopecia orally and topically cbd oil 25 mg
    It works!!!

  23. Nicola says:

    I have had this since I was 10 no hair no eyebrows etc I’m now 30 over last two years I’ve been using alpecin c1 shampoo and I have prob 90% regrow that, if I stop using shampoo for few days lots starts to fall out again but with using it ever day this doesn’t happen worth a try for everyone

  24. JJ says:

    – THIS WORKED FOR ME NO LIE-

    Onion juice grew my hair back

    I juiced organic onions and rubbed the onion juice on my alopecia every night for half an hour and within a month the hair grew back.

    I run the juice sometimes with abbot of honey to make it stick better on my spots on my head and use a shower cap to hold it in for about half an hour and then rinse my hair out.

    YouTube it google it..it works for me

    ONION JUICE IS THE CURE for Alopecia

    • Brandon Lopez says:

      How long have you been applying onion juice? I recently got this I’m 23 and tripping out do I apply it as much as I can ?

  25. Marcel says:

    Is anyone able to answer if they have used THC or CBD oil?? And how many milligrams..25mg, 150mg, 250mg, 500mg?
    How many times a day and when applied? I am on second day of applying CBD oil 500mg directly to scalp. Crossing my fingers! I have had my alopecia for over 20 years and it seems to be at its worst.
    Thanks!

  26. Alison says:

    I’m 18 and I’ve had Alopecia Universalis for 12 years, since I was only 6. When I was young my mother used to make me take extreme medication that never worked. I’ve stopped seeking treatment because I’m comfortable in my baldness now! When I was 15 I starting smoking cannabis very regularly (even though it’s illegal here in Ireland) and I found that my eyelashes and eyebrows began to grow back. I stopped for about 9 months and every hair that grew fell out again. For the last year now I have been smoking cannabis again and my eyelashes and eyebrows are slowly growing back! I even have some hair on my head! I truly believe that medical marijuana has so many medical benefits and not just for Alopecia! We need to break the stigma and hopefully, minds will begin to open and quality of lives that matter will start to improve.

  27. Decca says:

    Hi, everyone! Started using marijuana tincture ( Everclear alcohol with marijuana that supposedly has a high CBD content because my shoulders started restricting mobility). I noticed immediate improvement, so I started using it on my knees and also saw improvement. I can now walk without feeling pain in my joints. Then I started thinking that it could be useful on my receding forehead and the crown of my head. Its been just a month since I started using the tincture on my shoulders. I noticed that hair grown very noticeably on my head. I’m over 67 years old and I now believe that I can look and feel younger than I am with taking expensive drugs and treatments. I’m glad that I live in Colorado.

    • Kate says:

      I live in Colorado too. Where are you getting your tincture and do you need a medical card? I have not been able to find anything recreationally that does not have the thc/cbd blend.

  28. Decca says:

    Hi, everyone! Started using marijuana tincture ( Everclear alcohol with marijuana that supposedly has a high CBD content because my shoulders started restricting mobility). I noticed immediate improvement, so I started using it on my knees and also saw improvement. I can now walk without feeling pain in my joints. Then I started thinking that it could be useful on my receding forehead and the crown of my head. Its been just a month since I started using the tincture on my shoulders. I noticed that hair grown very noticeably on my head. I’m over 67 years old and I now believe that I can look and feel younger than I am without taking expensive drugs and treatments. I’m glad that I live in Colorado.

  29. E.J. Cannon says:

    I’ve had alopecia for almost 20 years now and I am currently 24 years of age. I have tried treatments and techniques, and so far cannabis has been my go to as my hair loss has decreased with cannabis consumption. The only other treatment that I have personally found useful is Grisfulvon twice a day but this is a substance that made me feel lazy, tired and inactive as it stays active in your system for up to 12 hours.

  30. Ashley says:

    I wish people would not post their expierence sayin “it works” when they know it didn’t work for them. Giving false hope for others… I guess that’s why you never know until you try for yourself, but too bad I live in Tennessee where cannibas and all is illegal. I used to smoke every day and, no it didn’t help. I have had alopecia universities for 15 years, since I was 7 years old. Nothing has helped. None of the treatments the doctors recommended helped even a little bit. The shots in my head, the cream nothing. So I’m on an adventure to try cannabis now, I have a lot of faith but I’m prepared for it not working either.

  31. patti says:

    Do you also have vitiligo? I ask this because anyone that gets alopecia can also have vitiligo and if that is the case, them only 1% of those people, it will NOT grow back. My husband has had vitiligo for over 20 yrs. and it’s stayed the same and then about 3 yrs. ago he started losing his hair. The patches got larger so I finally talked him into getting his hair shaved off his head. He now uses a head shaver to keep it shaved, because if it starts to grow back, it’s only in the same spots where hair was and the alopecia is still there. Not great news, but just a thought in what’s happened to my hubby and his dr. even said that if this happens to a person with alopecia and already have vitiligo, only 1% can usually grown their hair back. Not good odds.

  32. Jonathas Castro says:

    Hi. My name is Jonathas, i’m brazilian. In São Paulo.
    I have alopecia areata since 2013 and my alopecia areata is universal. My trataments consist of corticoides if injectables and oral. But, the results don’t wehe satisfatorys.
    Could cannabidiol have a positive effect?

  33. Troy says:

    Any before and after pictures?

  34. Magda says:

    Hi I am 23 year old female. I have been diagnosed with Alopecia Areata when I was 10 years old. My hair grew back completely when I hit my puberty and starting smoking weed and a teenager. I stopped smoking weed 3 years ago. Alopecia Areata came back to me now about 2 months ago. I think it was due to stress in work having a horrible manager. My patch is not that big and hidden behind my ear so it’s not really visible when I have my hair down but I am scared it will spead or become even larger as it did before when I was younger. The patch that I have at the moment it grew a bit since it came up. Recently I bought CBD oil I started taking it yesterday I am praying this will help and make my hair grow back. I take 2 drops of the oil under my tongue and I massage a bit on the patch before bed.

  35. April says:

    Where can I purchase the thc oil I suffered from shingles it took my hair out could of been the medicine because I still have hair but not in the front

  36. April Hampton says:

    I suffer from shingles an the medicine pulled my hair out in the front so I have to wear wigs…where can I purchase the thc from

  37. Deirdre Caroline says:

    I live in North Carolina. I want to know if my doctor will prescribe medical marijuana for me since I have Alopecia. I am in second year of college but I cannot let anyone know I have this disease, afraid the wigs I wear will be pulled off or fall off. I need help.

  38. Joey Rao says:

    Do u send to Malaysia? My country is not legal with hemp ,but can it be done ?

  39. Brittany says:

    I’m a hairdresser and I’ve created a scalp treatment with CBD & hemp oil. You can see before & after pictures on how my treatment is helping with hair loss, dandruff, and dry scalp. 100% natural! Instagram: Goddessy_Hair

  40. Adam says:

    Hello,

    I have been suffering from transient alopecia areata since the fall of 2010. I will admit that I know certain lifestyle choices have played a critical role in the flare up of the hair loss. Poor sleep habits, consumption of high sodium and high sucrose foods, high stress levels and the biggest of them all, smoking cigarettes all played a role in the flare up of alopecia in 2010. Since then I have been going to the dermatologist to get the steroid shots and the hair would come back, I would resume smoking and continuing what I did and the spots would return. Since about 2013 I gave up smoking and every time I had a small spell of cigarette smoking the spots would come back and the hair would disappear again. When it comes to the differences between cannabis smoke and tobacco smoke, how can I know if the smoke from smoking a joint would be harmful the way tobacco smoke is to me?

    Thank you.

  41. Jennifer Poku says:

    Hello
    I was diagnosed with alopecia a year ago. I had very big bald spots surrounding my head and my whole scalp was very red with inflammation . Also had hives from stress. Medication never worked for my hives and never got any injections on my scalp. I started smoking two joints a night and my hair has grown back. I have dark brown hair and my hair grew back, red, blonde, grey spots. Recently my scalp has become red and tender again and I think I may try the CBD oil.

  42. Tokerday says:

    Hi I took a break from smoking for a whole month after smoking for about 12 years every day. And now that I think about it, it was right around the same time I had my first flare up. Two big patches on my head. Is it possible to developed alopecia after you stop smoking?…maybe because you dont have all of the beneficial properties in your system after having it in your body constantly for years…just a thought. I was wondering if anyone else had experienced this?

  43. Kathy says:

    My dog suffered from hair loss. She’s been on allergy injections and Apoquel for close to three years. The hair loss got progressively worse with new bald patches forming. The huge rectangle on her side where they shaved her for the allergy testing only grew back sparse hairs. About two months ago I stopped her meds. Also started her and my other dog on CBD oil for dogs. Low and behold her fur is growing in. It’s a miracle. Don’t know if it’s the oil, removal and of meds or both.

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