What Are The Myths About Hair Loss
Myths about hair loss are widespread. Nothing in the following list is true:
- Youre losing hair because you shampoo it too much, or because youve colored it or gotten a perm.
- Dandruff causes permanent hair loss in women.
- Stress causes permanent hair loss in women.
- If you shave your head, your hair will grow back twice as thick.
- If you stand on your head youll increase circulation, stimulating hair growth.
- If you brush your hair 100 strokes a day that will make your hair healthier.
- Hats and wigs cause hair loss in women.
- Hair loss only affects intellectual women.
Thinning Hair And Hair Loss: Could It Be Female Pattern Hair Loss
For most women, FPHL begins in midlife, when a woman is in her 40s, 50s, or 60s. It can begin earlier for some women.
FPHL is a progressive condition. This means women tend to continue losing hair. But women do not lose all of their hair, as do some men. Instead, your part often gets wider. Hair near your temples may recede. Without treatment, some women eventually develop widespread thinning.
Treatment can prevent hair loss from worsening and help women regrow their hair. Treatment delivers the best results when started at the first sign of hair loss.
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How To Stop Thinning Hair
If youre experiencing male pattern hair loss, there are several strategies you can take to stem the loss and increase hair growth. Hair loss treatments include:
- Minoxidil . This liquid or foam is rubbed onto the scalp twice a day. About 60 percent of men who use minoxidil see hair regrowth. If you stop using it, the new growth will reverse, and hair loss will continue.
- Finasteride . This oral medication is known as a 5-alpha-reductase inhibitor. 5-alpha-reductase converts testosterone into DHT in the testicles and prostate. When 5-AR is inhibited, DHT cant shrink hair follicles. Studies show finasteride can stop baldness from progressing and result in hair regrowth in about 80 percent of cases.
- A red light therapy device. Low-level laser light therapy is an FDA-cleared way to treat hair loss. These devices might come in the form of a wand you point at the scalp or a cap you can wear. They emit a constant red LED light that is believed to reduce inflammation and increase blood flow to the hair follicles.
According to a 2017 meta-analysis of studies published in the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, minoxidil, finasteride and LLLT were found to be superior to placebo in regrowing hair . However, the researchers concluded theyre all effective for promoting hair growth in men with male pattern hair loss.Some other therapies for thinning hair include:
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How To Stop My Hair From Falling Out
Is your hair shedding? Your scalp may be sweaty. Perspiration creates a moist environment that allows the natural fungus on the scalp to thrive. The resulting inflammation and itching can lead to follicle damage, making hair vulnerable to fall-out, says Roberts-Cooper.
One of the most natural ways to stop hair from falling out and thinning? Honey. Research shows applying honey, which is a natural antifungal, to the scalp every other day eliminates fungus in one week, plus leads to a noticeable drop in shedding in four weeks.
To make a honey hair mask: Mix two tablespoons of honey with 2/3 cup of warm water. Massage into scalp and let sit for 30 minutes, then rinse.
What Are The Cycles Of Hair Growth
Hair goes through three cycles:
- The anagen phase can last from two years to eight years. This phase generally refers to about 85% to 90% of the hair on your head.
- The catagen phase is the time that hair follicles shrink and takes about two to three weeks.
- The telogen phase takes about two to four months. At the end of this phase, the hair falls out.
Your shorter hairs like eyelashes, arm and leg hair and eyebrows have a short anagen phase about one month. Your scalp hair can last up to six years or even longer.
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What Questions Might Your Healthcare Provider Ask To Diagnose And Categorize Your Hair Loss
Your healthcare provider might ask about your habits:
- What kinds of hair products do you use?
- What kinds of hair styles do you wear?
- What types of food do you eat ?
- Do you have a habit of pulling your hair out ?
They might ask about your history:
- Has anyone in your immediate family experienced hair loss?
- Is there anything stressful going on in your life?
- What medications and supplements do you take every day?
- Has hair loss ever happened to you before?
- What foods are in your diet?
And, they might ask about your observations:
- How long have you been losing hair?
- Have you been shedding more?
- Have you noticed hair loss in places other than your scalp, like your eyebrows? Leg and arm hair?
- Does anything worsen your hair loss?
- Does anything improve your hair loss?
- Have you noticed hair loss occasionally or has it been going on continuously?
- Have you noticed if your hair growth has changed?
- Has your hair been breaking more often?
Change Your Hair Products
There is some evidence that many gels and other styling products may contribute to hair loss, as the chemicals within these products stay on the scalp and become trapped in the follicles, preventing the hair from coming to the surface. Avoid excessive use of hair gels and try more natural styling products, which contain fewer chemicals.
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Don’t Rely Solely Shampoo
‘It is important to note that shampoo will not grow your hair. This is because it is not left on the scalp for long enough to have an effect. You must use drops or tonics that are left on the scalp and not rinsed away,’ explains Kingsley.
However, regular shampooing is important as it keeps the scalp environment healthy and this is key to healthy hair growth.
‘Shampoos, conditioners and styling products can certainly give the appearance of more body and volume. To add immediate body to fine hair, or hair that lacks volume, use a body building shampoo. Containing proteins, these temporarily plump the hair shaft,’ advises Kingsley.
The First 10 Things You Should Do When You Notice Your Hair Is Thinning
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How Do You Measure Hair Loss
Doctors characterize the severity of hair loss using something called the Savin density scale. This scale has 8 stages and describes hair loss around the midline part as well recession in the front of the hairline. Some women lose hair to various degrees around the midline and/or in the front of the hairline. Some women experience hair thinning all over the scalp. Hair loss may occur in episodes or continuously. The doctor parts the hair down the middle of the head and then determines the severity of hair loss. The most common pattern for female pattern baldness is thinning around the midline that occurs in the shape of a Christmas tree. The pattern and severity of female hair loss helps determine the appropriate course of treatment.
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Excessive Hair Loss After Showering Or Brushing
Its normal to lose hair when you shower, brush or comb.
On average, people lose between 50 and 100 hairs a day, meaning that the four to five hairs you notice in your hands after shampooing your hair aren’t anything to be concerned about.
However, if you start to notice an excessive amount of hair falling out throughout the day, theres a risk that it could be the result of male pattern baldness.
Before you panic, its important to know that temporary hair loss can happen and that shedding a lot of hair for a day or two isnt necessarily a cause for alarm.
Less alarming yet common causes of hair loss range from high fevers to psychological stress to side effects of medication.
This type of hair loss is usually temporary, meaning youll notice a larger number of hairs in your hands and on your brush for anywhere from one to six months .
You might also notice loose hairs on your pillow in the morning.
If you notice a large amount of hair loss every day for a long time, you should seek medical advice.
After all, it may not take as long as youd think for a modest amount of daily hair loss from a full head of hair to turn into a receding hairline or a visible bald spot on your crown.
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Underlying Causes For Hair Loss
Numerous problems can trigger female hair loss. Some are external, such as taking certain medications, frequently wearing hairstyles that pull the hair too tight, or even a stressful event such as surgery. In other cases, thinning hair is triggered by something going on inside the body for instance, a thyroid problem, a shift in hormones, a recent pregnancy, or an inflammatory condition.
Hair loss may also be genetic. The most common genetic condition is known as female-pattern hair loss, or androgenic alopecia. Women with this condition might notice a widening of the part at the top of the head, often beginning when a woman is in her 40s or 50s. You might experience this if you inherit certain genes from one or both parents. Hormonal shifts that occur during menopause may also spur it.
Another trigger for hair loss in women is an inflammatory condition affecting the scalp. That might be eczema, psoriasis, or a condition called frontal fibrosing alopecia, which typically causes scarring and hair loss sometimes permanent at the front of the scalp above the forehead.
Other common causes of hair loss include overuse of damaging hair products, or tools such as dryers and other devices that heat the hair. Underlying illness, autoimmune conditions such as lupus, nutritional deficiencies, or hormonal imbalances may also cause hair to shed.
How To Tell If You’re Going To Go Bald
This isnt as silly a question as it sounds. Losing your hair isnt the same as going bald. Male pattern baldness is a genetic condition whereas hair loss per se can be caused by a variety of factors.
If you are losing patches of hair in an apparently random manner you may have alopecia, a condition where a person loses patches of hair from parts of their body. In extreme cases this may affect all of the hair on the body. Alopecia is thought to have hereditary and autoimmune factors . It is not the same as male pattern baldness.
If your hair loss occurs in a more regular receding pattern, usually from the temples and crown of the head, then it is more likely you have male pattern baldness. But remember most men go bald. Its nothing to be afraid of or embarrassed about.
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Other Common Hair Growth Procedures
Hair transplants are procedures where a doctor relocates healthy, hair-generating areas to your balding scalp. The donor portions have active, hair-growing follicles, and can fill in the bald spots with much success.
The pros to hair transplant is that you may not need any other treatment or follow-up: once the transplant is done, the hair is yours and growing. Because youre donating the hair yourself, you know it will match in both color and texture, and also ensures uniformity in hair growth.
On the con side, there are minor surgical risks, including infection and, in some cases, hemorrhaging. There can also be scarring, and some people dont like the overall aesthetic look. Also, its unlikely that a procedure like this is covered by your insurance, so you may need to be prepared for a hefty bill.
A more invasive surgery, scalp reduction involves removing the parts of the scalp that do not produce hair and stretching the good hair-producing scalp to cover them. Because of scarring, this treatment is only recommended for the back and top of the head, not a receding hairline.
In addition, scalp reduction procedures usually dont cover the entire area thats affected by the hair loss, but rather just a portion. The stretching of the healthy scalp area can usually cover about 50% of the affected area.
Platelet Rich Plasma for Hair Loss
Minoxidil or Finasteride
How Can You Prevent Thinning Hair
As there are so many reasons for hair loss, it can be difficult to prevent it from happening, and the reasons are different for men and women.
However, making sure you are looking after your hair and body can play a part.
Maintaining a healthy diet will keep your body in optimum condition, and that includes drinking plenty of water and steering clear of smoking and high alcohol consumption.
You can also think about how you treat your hair, by not subjecting it to high heat and harsh products.
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