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Why Does My Hair Hurt At The Roots?

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Technically, your hair cannot hurt because there are no nerves present in the hair strands. But sometimes, when you do touch your hair, it can feel like your hair is hurting. So let's try to understand what is happening, why your hair hurts at the roots, and how you can treat this condition.

Table of Contents

1. Why Does My Hair Hurt at the Roots?
2. How to Relieve Scalp Pain?
  2.1 For Allergies
  2.2 For Dry Skin Conditions
  2.3 For Scalp Folliculitis
  2.4 Massage Your Scalp With Essential Oils
  2.5 Try Home Remedies
  2.6 Change Your Hair Care Routine
3. How to Prevent Scalp Pain?

Why Does My Hair Hurt at the Roots? 

Simply put, your hair hurts at the roots because something has caused irritation or inflammation to your scalp. Such as:

  • Ponytails: The relief you feel when you untie your hair after a long day is unparalleled. A tight ponytail triggers multiple nerves present within the scalp. And, over time, it can start hurting. It can also cause headaches because of the continued pressure on the nerves.
  • Scalp Psoriasis: It is a condition in which skin cells overgrow leading to crusted plaques on the scalp. It might also affect the back of the ears, the forehead, and the neck. Although the exact cause is unknown, the possible risk factors for this condition include family history, obesity, smoking, stress, and microbial infections.  
  • Seborrheic Dermatitis: Seborrheic dermatitis is a common inflammatory condition of the scalp that typically results in pesky flakes and an itchy scalp. 
  • Scalp Folliculitis: Scalp folliculitis is another inflammatory infection of the scalp. It affects the hair follicles present on the scalp and manifests as small bumps that are itchy and painful. 
  • Scalp Dysesthesia: It is also known as burning scalp syndrome, because it causes a burning sensation, itching, or pain on the scalp. 
  • Stress: Yes, along the other negative effects it has your body, stress can also cause a painful scalp. 

How to Relieve Scalp Pain?

Depending on the cause, there can be different ways to relieve scalp pain

For Allergies

If you have an allergic reaction to a new hair product you are trying, first and foremost you should stop using the product and allow your scalp to heal. You should try washing your scalp with cold or lukewarm water and see if that relieves the pain. It is best not to use any other hair products until you are certain your scalp is fine again.

For Dry Skin Conditions

With conditions such as eczema, psoriasis, or seborrheic dermatitis, the first sign you may notice is a flaky or scaly scalp. In that case, you can try to massage your scalp with a gentle scalp massager brush to promote blood circulation and help relieve the pain.

gentle scalp massager brush


For Scalp Folliculitis

You may need an antibacterial cleanser, at the recommendation of your doctor, to relieve scalp folliculitis.

Massage Your Scalp With Essential Oils

Many essential oils, such as rosemary, peppermint, tea tree or lavender oil have anti-inflammatory and healing properties and can help in relieving scalp pain. Dilute four to five drops of the essential oil of your choice in one tablespoon of a carrier oil, such as almond oil, and massage it on your scalp. Don’t forget to do a patch test first. 

rosemary oil


Try Home Remedies

Simple home remedies you can try include using aloe vera gel or lemon juice on your scalp. Both have anti-inflammatory properties. Plus, since lemon juice is acidic in nature, it can also help restore the pH balance on your scalp.

You can add a few drops of lemon juice to your shampoo, massage it gently on the scalp for a few minutes, and rinse it clean. Alternatively, you can use an apple cider vinegar shampoo

apple cider vinegar shampoo.


You can also apply fresh aloe vera gel on your scalp for 20 to 30 minutes before you shower. Massage it on the scalp, put on a shower cap, and after 30 minutes rinse the gel with cold or lukewarm water. It is not necessary to shampoo right away, but shampooing will, of course, make your hair squeaky clean.

Change Your Hair Care Routine

You might want to take a break from all the hair care products you normally use, like dry shampoo, styling spray, hair gel, etc. This will prevent any product buildup on your scalp. Additionally, you should look for a shampoo that contains anti-inflammatory agents such as aloe vera or oat extract that will soothe your scalp.  

However, if the scalp pain persists or your scalp starts bleeding, you should definitely consult your dermatologist.

How to Prevent Scalp Pain?

If you know the exact cause that is triggering the pain, that is well and good, and you can try some preventive measures to ensure that this pain does not recur.

  • If you are allergic to specific ingredients, ensure that any hair or skin care products you use do not contain those ingredients. Make it a habit to read the product label.
  • Avoid using hair products that contain alcohol, as it may make your scalp more dry and irritated.
  • Do not use hot water on your scalp. Instead, use lukewarm or cool water to wash your scalp.
  • Avoid wearing ponytails for a time and give one of those cute messy, loose buns a try, or braid your hair. Ensure that whichever hairstyle you go for is loose and doesn't put pressure on the scalp. 
  • Maintain your hair hygiene by using shampoo and conditioner routinely to avoid sebum or product buildup on your scalp.
  • Oiling your hair once a week and massaging it for a few minutes can also beneficial in preventing scalp pain. You can try this WOW oil:
WOW 10 in 1 Hair Oil


Our
WOW 10 in 1 Hair Oil is composed of rosemary oil, extra virgin olive oil, sweet almond oil, Moroccan argan oil, jojoba oil, grapeseed oil, safflower oil, Bhringraj extract, vitamin E, and tea tree essential oil. It boosts hair health, nourishes and repairs, tames frizz, and strengthens hair from the roots, while also helping soothe and heal the scalp. 

Sangya Shaily

Sangya Shaily is a content writer from Mumbai, India. She loves writing lifestyle, beauty, fashion, and health & wellness-related content, among other things. In her leisure time, she loves to indulge in reading classic literature and spend time with her family.

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