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Can Depression Lead To Hair Loss

Does Depression Cause Hair Loss

Depression leads to Hair loss | How to stop hair loss due to depression? Dr Deepthi

Theres minimal research on whether depression causes hair loss. But a 2012 study conducted among adult female outpatients at a public dermatology clinic indicates that hair loss complaints are commonly associated with symptoms of depression.

Dr. Sabrina Romanoff, a clinical psychologist with a private practice in New York City and spokesperson for Nioxin, says that hair loss isnt a symptom of depression itself, but rather a secondary symptom associated with depression triggers or treatments.

She notes that there seems to be a greater link between depression and hair loss among folks who are concurrently experiencing high stress levels.

On the other hand, balding can also lead to depressive symptoms.

While an initial stressor might originally lead to depression and subsequent hair loss, the hair loss itself can cause significant stress on its own, and may lead to a perpetual negative cycle between stress, depression, and hair loss, she says.

Hair restoration specialist Jae Pak, MD, adds that hair loss can lead to feelings of sadness and a loss of confidence as well, which can exacerbate depressive symptoms.

The Hair Growth And Loss Cycle

To understand the type of hair loss related to Wellbutrin, it helps to talk about the phases of the hair cycle. Our hair actually goes through four distinct phases between the “birth” of a hair and when it falls out: anagen, catagen, telogen, and exogen. The first phase, anagen, determines how long hair will become and lasts from two to six years. Nearly 90% of the hairs on your head are in the anagen phase.

Catagen is a shorter transition phase in which the hair follicle loses its blood supply and stops growing. It then enters the telogen phase, where it stays for three or four months. Exogen is the final phase, in which the hair is shed. Around 10% of your hair is normally in the telogen phase, but this can be much higher if your hair is prematurely shifted to the telogen phase by a physical or emotional stressor.

The type of hair loss experienced by some people on Wellbutrin and other antidepressants is telogen effluvium. It is characterized by widespread thinning of the hair. Often, more hair loss occurs near the front of the head, above the forehead.

Can Hair Loss From Depression Grow Back

Hair loss from depression may not last forever, especially if you still have healthy hair follicles.

Dr. Pak says its possible for hair to grow back once your depressive symptoms resolve and stress levels reduce. If hair loss is medication-related, the normal hair growth process will likely resume once the substance is discontinued, he adds.

But because everyones different and many factors play into hair loss, he notes that professionals need to evaluate folks on a case-by-case basis.

According to a 2017 study, some common types of hair loss include:

  • scarring alopecia
  • telogen effluvium
  • trichotillomania
  • trichorrhexis nodosa
  • anagen effluvium
  • eating a nutritious, balanced diet
  • creating opportunities to find joy and have positive experiences
  • figuring out how to feel better about your physical appearance

You can also consider trying these coping strategies:

  • using botanicals, supplements, and massage oils
  • seeking advanced medical therapies
  • trying different hair growth products
  • experimenting with wearing hats or wigs
  • consulting a hair restoration specialist
  • seeing a doctor to identify the cause of your hair loss

Most importantly, Dr. Pak recommends trying not to worry, because worrying is proven to negatively impact your overall health.

The biggest takeaway here is that the mind-body connection is real, he says. Mental and emotional distress can wreak havoc on all bodily systems, including the hair follicles.

Also Check: How To Thicken Up Thin Hair

Signs Of Mild Depression:

  • Physical pains or gastric issues that have no somatic explanations
  • Memory and thinking problems like increased forgetfulness

If you or someone around you is suffering from any such symptoms, or is distressed over the feelings of sadness or frustration that you/ they feel, it is recommended that professional help be sought.

Hair Loss: How Does It Affect Women

Expert Speak: Causes And Prevention Of Hair Loss

On seeing a bald man walk past, most of us wouldnt take a second glance. But would this be the case if a bald woman walked past? It is doubtful. Hair loss although distressing is generally more accepted in men, despite women accounting for 40% of all hair loss sufferers in the US. In this Spotlight, we look at the main causes of hair loss in women, the emotional toll it can take and why research is lagging behind in treatment for female hair loss.

The most common cause of hair loss in both men and women is androgenetic alopecia, also referred to as male or female pattern baldness.

A hereditary condition, androgenetic alopecia is believed to be caused by dihydrotestosterone , which derives from the male hormone testosterone.

An enzyme called Type 2 5-alpha reductase present in the oil glands of hair follicles, the skin organs that produce hair helps convert testosterone to DHT. This derivative then binds to and shrinks hair follicles, killing healthy hair.

Because men have higher testosterone levels than women, they are likely to produce higher DHT levels, leading to increased hair loss. As such, men with androgenetic alopecia often experience a receding hairline which can progress to partial or complete baldness, while women tend to experience hair thinning on the top and sides of the scalp.

But androgenetic alopecia is not the only cause of hair loss in women.

Also Check: How To Control Hair Loss

Diseases That Cause Hair Loss In Men And Women

While the list of medical conditions plaguing humankind is literally unending, diseases that cause hair loss in men and women can surely be documented with ease. As a leading non-surgical hair replacement systems brand, we continuously work on creating awareness about hair fallout and conditions that lead to it.

Today, Lordhair will talk about diseases that are a major cause of hair loss globally. From the introduction to causes, symptoms, and treatments, we will try to touch upon everything in a brief manner. Lets get started right away:

What Are The Other Common Causes Of Hair Loss In Women

Telogen effluvium is a form of hair loss that can develop when the body is put through extreme stress, such as child birth, malnutrition or major surgery.

The condition involves a sudden shift from hair growth or resting phases to the hair shedding phase, known as telogen. This can occur within 6 weeks to 3 months after a stressful experience.

According to Dr. Shani Francis, also a fellow of the American Academy of Dermatology and director of the Hair Disorders Center of Excellence at Northshore University HealthSystem in Illinois, telogen effluvium is much more common in women than men. It is the typical shedding that happens after childbirth in some women, she told us.

She added that some triggers of the condition such as iron deficiency and changes in medication are more likely to occur in women. These triggers typically affect women more than men due to menstruation, the most common cause of iron deficiency in women, and the high prevalence of birth control use some women change birth control quite frequently, she explained.

Traction alopecia is another form of hair loss that is more likely to occur in women. It is triggered by trauma to the hair follicles, most commonly through hair styling that continuously pulls at them such as braiding, tight ponytails and hair extensions. This type of hair loss is primarily seen in African-American patients, said Dr. Glashofer.

Read Also: Can Fleas Cause Hair Loss In Cats

Hair Loss And Depression:

Depression is among the most common mental illnesses. The link between hair loss and depression is such that depression not only causes hair breakage and fall, but also changes the texture of your hair by making it dry and brittle.

Depression can change or alter your hair growth cycle, making hair loss prominent. Further, certain medications prescribed as a treatment for depression can also have side effects like hair loss.

Our hair normally goes through a resting phase. It happens about every three years and lasts about three months before our hair starts to grow again. During this resting phase, more hairs than usual fall out, and our hair looks thinner. This process is called telogen effluvium. It can be brought on quicker by stress, starting earlier and lasting longer in the natural cycle of hair growth and rest.

Three types of hair loss associated with stress of depression include:

Hair loss may also end up becoming a factor in the symptoms of depression. It may give people suffering from such depression a focal point for the negative feelings they are experiencing. In depression sadness may often be unexplainable, hair loss however becomes a socially acceptable reason for such feelings.

Can Depression Lead To Hair Loss


Depression is something no one wants to deal with. But the problem with depression is that it comes unexpectedly. You dont know when youll experience it and how to solve depression.

When youre depressed, there are a lot of different side effects that could happen. The most common ones are dieting, hair loss, and anxiety. These problems can be really scary because it can go really fast, which often leads to a receding hairline very early on.

Can Depression Lead To Hair Loss? Yes, depression can lead to hair loss due to anxiety or social phobia. If you have anxiety, youre busy in your mind almost all the time and dont really know what to do. You probably will sleep less, which often leads to less energy. Another problem is that you will be stressed a lot, and that will also lead to hair loss.

It comes in all ages and is not something you can prepare for. Most importantly is that you look for help before its too late. Talk to someone you really care about and make sure that you can tell that person the problems youre dealing with.

What Ive learned from my own experience is that its better to share your problems with some you trust. If you keep everything to yourself, you will eventually explode, and it will get even worse. So to prevent all this, find a person that you can talk to.

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Can My Hair Loss Be Treated

Hair loss caused by mental health issues can in most cases be treated. The underlying problem of hair loss for most mental health issues is stress. Stress related hair loss, in most cases, stops its growth phase during a stressful period and lie dormant, causing the hair to shed. If the stress continues, the hair continues not to grow.

However, if the stress does stop your hair will resume its normal growth phase and after a month or so youll notice your hair loss would have stopped and new hair will begin to grow.

Other factors, such as side effects from medication cant be stopped, however, it is a possibility that you can talk to a GP about changing to medications that have different, and maybe fewer side effects.

If you would like to speak to one of our hair loss specialists about your hair loss please contact us for a no obligation consultation.

Understand The Role Of Stress And The Importance Of Easing It

It seems like a cruel joke: Hair loss stresses you out and stress can make hair loss worse. In fact, some types of hair loss are specifically associated with stress:

  • Telogen effluvium occurs when many hair follicles are sent into the resting phase and fall out at the same time.
  • Alopecia areata occurs when the bodys immune system attacks hair follicles.

So its important to actively combat stress. I recommend a marriage of medical treatments with lifestyle recommendations such as yoga andacupuncture to reduce stress and boost well-being, says Dr. Mraz Robinson. She also suggests that you amp up basic self-care. This includes eating right, exercising, getting enough sleep and reaching out to your support system.

All these approaches can better equip you to cope with not only the stress that hair loss brings but also lifes normal roller coaster of ups and downs.

Read Also: Who Do You Go To For Hair Loss

How To Fight Back

First and foremost, take active steps to reduce your anxiety levels. If you are not currently undergoing anxiety treatment, the professionals at Destination Hope can help you understand the root of your anxiety and provide treatment options so you can live a healthy life.

With your anxiety and stress reduced after receiving treatment, your hair may begin to grow back on its own. A healthy diet and exercise can help also provide the nutrients needed for hair growth. Hair growth is a long process and your hair may not come back for months, so its important to be patient and continue working on monitoring your anxiety.

Why Do Antidepressants Cause Hair Loss

Depression and hair loss. ¿Which one comes first?

The type of hair loss generally caused by antidepressants is called telogen effluvium. Telogen effluvium occurs when your body is stressed in some wayperhaps by childbirth, illness, surgery, mental stress, poor nutrition, or medicationwhich causes hair follicles to enter into the resting stage prematurely. Because more hair follicles are now in this resting stage, more hair is shed, leading to diffuse hair loss all over the scalp.

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The Effects Of Female Hair Loss On Womens Psychological Wellbeing Women Suffering In Silence

Research launched to assess the impact of female hair loss has highlighted that well over three quarters of women suffer from low esteem and over a third of women feel depressed as a result of their hair thinning. Whilst society fully accepts that men suffer from hair loss, 97% of respondents think that women are embarrassed to admit hair loss as society considers it socially unacceptable.

The extensive research provides an insight into the numbers of women suffering from hair loss and the psychological impact that it has on all areas of their lives. According to research and experts, female hair loss and thinning is becoming more prevalent in our society and GPs are often ill-equipped to understand the causes. Over half of the women surveyed said that their GP would be their first port of call for hair loss advice, and this in fact may be the wrong course of action to take.

Over half of women are suffering. Female hair loss is a common problem with well over half of respondents saying that they know women who suffer from hair loss. More than 1 in 3 women suffer themselves with hair loss.


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