The pure form of mehndi (that is green in colour) doesn t cause any health complications, except for some allergic reactions in sensitive individuals. However, brown and black coloured mehndi causes contact dermatitis when applied in some cases.
Common side-effects of mehndi are –
Although mehendi obtained naturally is free of chemicals, in some cases PPD (Para-phenylenediamine) is added to intensify the colour and lower application time. But what most people are unaware of is the fact that PPD is a powerful allergen and its contact with the skin might trigger an allergic reaction. Common symptoms that you may experience include wheezing, itching, redness, burning and swelling of the skin.
Applying mehndi to your hair might cause them to become rough due to the presence of harmful chemicals that are added to it while processing. Mehendi may also damage your hair shaft and make it more vulnerable to become dry. In some rare cases, use of henna for hair colouring might cause itching and eruption of boils on the head.
When mehenid comes in contact with your eyes, it might cause redness and watering of the eyes. If you come across such a situation, wash your eyes with cold water and visit an eye specialist to get tested for any complications. Also, strong smell of the mehendi might lead to some hypersensitivity (but is very rare).
Bursting of RBCs (red blood cells)
Children suffering from a rare condition called glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency, should stay away from applying henna on their hands. In this condition, when mehendi is applied, red blood cells tend to burst, leading to severe health complications. If this occurs, it is a case of a medical emergency and should be shown to the doctor at the earliest.
Never consume mehendi in any form as it is considered to be unsafe for human consumption. Also, if you accidentally swallow mehendi, consult a doctor immediately. The health complications that might result include stomach upset, vomiting and other stomach complications.
Experts tips to avoid side-effects of mehendi :
- Always perform a patch test before applying mehendi on your hands or hair. Here s how to do a patch test at home.
- To avoid rough hair caused due to exposure to chemicals in mehendi , oil your hair shaft before applying henna to reduce its side-effects.
- Another important fact to keep in mind – wash your hair with shampooand conditioner (preferably herbal one) to lessen the negative effect on your hair.
- If you experience itching, redness or oozing on the skin, wash off your hand or head and pop anti-allergy medications like Allegra or Avil.
- If you experience any of these conditions, consult a dermatologist at the earliest and do not apply any home remedy, like oil, to soothe the allergic reaction (as it might not help).
So the next time you apply mehendi on your hands or hair, make sure you follow these tips to avoid unwanted side-effects. Be safe and stay healthy!