Other Reasons For Hair Loss
This is the most common factor and one among the main ones when it comes to hair loss. In other cases, the stress it may not be the main cause, but it may contribute to hair loss. This is because the shock of stress can change the hair cycle or even weaken it.
Excess vitamin A or B
Vitamin deficiency causes hair loss, but too much of it too! This is a rare case, but it still happens. This can happen to those people who take supplements of these vitamins for a long period of time.
Hormonal changes are also major causes of hair loss and can happen at different times. In adolescence or when you change birth control pills or start a new method, you are likely to have more hair loss.
Diagnosing An Iron Deficiency
If you believe your hair loss is related to an iron deficiency, its important to consult with a healthcare provider before taking matters into your own hands. It may seem tempting to self-diagnose and take an iron supplement, but they do have side effects, and your good health intentions may end up leading to more severe health problems.
A visit to the doctor usually involves discussing your medication history and symptoms. Following a physical exam, your provider can run a blood test to see how much iron is stored in your body. Your provider will also likely test your hemoglobin and hematocrit levels. These and iron tests are regarded as the most efficient and cost-effective way to diagnose an iron deficiency .
If its confirmed youre low on iron and experiencing hair loss, your provider may test further to determine the exact cause of your iron deficiency. The good news is iron deficiency anemia is often treatable.
Can Low Iron Cause Hair Texture Change
Low levels of iron can often change the texture of your hair. It can go from feeling smooth and silky to dry and brittle.
The main answer to this is that when youre low in iron, your body takes ferritin, a blood protein that contains iron, from your hair follicles for use in other parts of the body. This lack of ferritin means that your hair isnt getting the support it needs to grow healthy.
With lower levels of ferritin in your follicles, you may notice changes in your hair texture. You hair may look frizzy, feel brittle and become coarse.
Also Check: Can Toenail Fungus Cause Hair Loss
What Can You Do To Prevent It
If your diet is high in sugar, a diet/lifestyle change is the first and most important thing you can do to prevent hair loss caused by anemia. According to the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, hair loss treatments are more effective when anemia is being properly dealt with. Eating plenty of nutritious foods and leading an active lifestyle is the first step towards solving the problem calcium and magnesium supplements are also recommended, but you should always speak to your doctor before taking them, as dosage usually varies according to each persons blood test results.Tip You might find drinking an organic green drink daily helps increase your intake of vitamins and minerals check out the worlds best organic powdered green drinks for some great examples.
Syphilis And Hair Loss
Hair loss can happen as part of secondary syphilis, which happens a few weeks later. This stage may stop after a few weeks, or come and go for a year or so.
Your hair usually sheds in whats known as a moth-eaten pattern, which appears either as small patches of hair loss, or evenly across the whole of your head. Its non-scarring alopecia, so it usually grows back with treatment.
A routine blood test can check for syphilis as part of a sexual health check, so its worth getting tested if you think you could be at risk.
Don’t Miss: How To Thin Leg Hair For Guys
What Does Iron Deficiency Hair Fall Look Like
Hair loss due to iron deficiency can be the same as regular male and female pattern hair loss. According to researchers, apart from hair loss, iron deficiency can lead to hair falling out, similar to hereditary male and female pattern baldness. People suffering from hair loss would witness a noticeable increase in strands falling out. In severer cases, bald spots on the scalp are also seen.
Tests To Know If You Have Iron Deficiency
Two tests have to be done. The hemoglobin concentration test helps measure the iron levels, and the serum ferritin concentration test confirms its deficiency. However, the serum ferritin levels may be high in people with inflammation and infections. In that case, erythrocyte zinc protoporphyrin concentration, serum iron concentration, transferrin concentration, and transferrin saturation must be tested to determine iron deficiency .
Scroll down to know the ideal iron level required for hair growth.
Also Check: What Causes Hair Loss In Children
What Is Anemia Does It Cause Hair Loss
Anemia is a health condition in which there is a decreased level of hemoglobin or red blood cells in your blood. Since red blood cells are responsible for carrying oxygen to the tissues, this condition can pose various challenges to the patient, including hair loss.
One of the most common forms of anemia is iron deficiency anemia. Our bodies need a certain amount of iron to produce hemoglobin, so iron deficiency lowers the level of hemoglobin in the blood. Low hemoglobin, caused by iron deficiency, leads to an insufficient amount of oxygen reaching the cells in your body, which causes anemia. And anemia causes hair loss.
Which Foods Should I Eat And Which Foods Should I Avoid If I Have Anemia
With anemia, making good food choices is important. Eating junk food means you are getting calories without nutrients. You also have to consider other medical conditions that you have when you make your food choices.
Some things have been shown to impair iron absorption. You should not take calcium and iron supplements at the same time. In addition, you may want to avoid or limit these items:
- Tannin-containing items like coffee, tea and some spices.
In general, you should eat iron-rich foods and foods that provide vitamins B12, B9 and C. This means that you can enjoy plenty of good food that is for you, whether you eat meat or not. You can get iron from plant sources like lentils, spinach and pistachios. You can get iron from protein sources like lean beef and turkey. Whole grains and dark leafy vegetables are good sources of B vitamins. Some foods are even fortified with iron.
Citrus fruits, berries and other vitamin C-containing foods like peppers and tomatoes improve iron consumption. It is a good idea to get advice from your healthcare provider or perhaps from a registered dietitian about the best ways to eat when you have anemia. Also, make sure that grapefruit does not interfere with any of your medications.
Recommended Reading: How To Fight Pcos Hair Loss
Improving Hair Texture Damaged By Iron Deficiency
There are many factors that can affect the texture and quality of hair. Your iron levels in particular can play a big part in how long, strong and healthy your hair grows.
Iron deficiency anaemia affects around 25% of adult men and postmenopausal women . This condition can have many effects on your physical health. Many people suffering from anaemia experience fatigue, heart palpitations, and paler skin than usual but iron deficiency can also impact the texture and thickness of your hair .
While you may feel disheartened to see your hair looking thin or brittle as a result of iron deficiency, this underlying cause is treatable. Keep reading to find out more about iron-deficiency anaemia and the role it plays in your hairs growth.
What Does Hair Loss Caused By Iron Deficiency Look Like
Hair fall caused by a lack of iron can be quite like the traditional male and female pattern baldness. This could range from bald spots to unusually large amounts of hair strands in your hair brush. Studies suggest that hair fall caused by a lack of iron in the body may imitate hair fall that occurs in genetic male and female pattern baldness .
Recommended Reading: Does Bendamustine Cause Hair Loss
Treating Hair Loss From Iron
Treating hair loss from iron-deficiency anemia usually involves treating the cause of your iron deficiency. Unlike male pattern baldness, hair loss from iron-deficiency anemia isnt related to hormones like DHT, meaning your hair is likely to grow back following treatment.
If youve noticed hair loss and think that iron-deficiency anemia could be the cause, its best to talk to your healthcare provider.
Iron-deficiency anemia is usually easy to diagnose with a blood test. Your healthcare provider may perform a physical exam to look for symptoms.
If they think you may have iron-deficiency anemia, you may need to complete a blood test.
Several blood tests can reveal iron-deficiency anemia, including a complete blood count , iron test, ferritin measure and others. Your healthcare provider will analyze your results and let you know whether or not youll need to take further action.
If you have an iron deficiency, your healthcare provider may recommend one or several different treatments. Common treatments for iron-deficiency anemia include:
If your iron-deficiency anemia is caused by another health issue, such as a problem absorbing iron, treating the underlying condition might help your body to absorb iron more effectively and restore your iron levels over time.
Sometimes, making changes to your habits and lifestyle can help you to take in more iron and maintain healthy iron levels naturally. Try to:
Will Hair Loss From Anemia Grow Back
If hair loss or other symptoms make us suspect that we are experiencing an anemia, you should pay a visit to your doctor, who after a blood test will determine your level of hemoglobin and iron in blood. If tests conclude that you have anaemia due to iron deficiency, doctor usually will prescribe iron supplements. Hair normally should regrow once the iron deficiency is over however, hair can take several months to grow back again, and hair loss recovery after anemia is not guaranteed.
One way to avoid this is prevent an iron deficiency in our body through consuming foods rich in iron, such as red meat, liver, eggs, legumes, spinach, and so on. Our recommendation is to combine this food intake with other foods rich in vitamin C -citrus, kiwis, peppers, broccoli…- since this vitamin helps to increase iron absorption by our body.
If we have had a severe hair loss due to anemia, there are treatments to stop hair loss and strengthen existing hair, such as minoxidil or platelet-rich plasma however, normally these treatments won’t get hair to grow back again. Therefore, when hair loss regrowth after anemia is not possible or damages to hair are simply too great, a hair transplant could be necessary.
Also Check: How To Make Thin Hair Grow Thicker
How To Diagnose Iron Deficiency
One might be experiencing terrible hair thinning and hair loss and we may all assume that it is as a result of iron deficiency. However, it is not assured until a test is done in the medical centers. For a conclusion to be drawn, for instance on the real cause of hair loss as iron deficiency, a diagnosis is definitely done. This is a test to determine whether the patient in question is actually lacking as much iron as the body requires. Doctors have three ways to determine the levels of iron in ones body. These are discussed as follows
Also Check: Do I Have Thick Or Thin Hair
Who Is Most Likely To Develop Anemia
Anyone can develop anemia, although the following groups have a higher risk:
- Women: Blood loss during monthly periods and childbirth can lead to anemia. This is especially true if you have heavy periods or a condition like fibroids.
- Children, ages 1 to 2: The body needs more iron during growth spurts.
- Infants: Infants may get less iron when they are weaned from breast milk or formula to solid food. Iron from solid food is not as easily taken up by the body.
- People over 65: People over 65 are more likely to have iron-poor diets and certain chronic diseases.
- People on blood thinners: These medications include drugs include aspirin, clopidogrel , warfarin , heparin products, apixaban , betrixaban , dabigatran , edoxaban and rivaroxaban .
Read Also: What To Help Hair Loss
How Does Anemia Cause Hair Loss
Without adequate iron, your body cant produce red blood cells. Red blood cells carry oxygen to hair follicles to help promote normal, healthy hair growth. Inadequate iron levels can cause a type of temporary hair loss called telogen effluvium. During telogen effluvium, more hair follicles than usual go from the growing phase to the shedding phase. As a result, hair appears thinner.
If you have hair loss from anemia, you may notice more hair in the shower drain than usual. Anemia-related hair loss can also look like male pattern hair loss, with a receding hairline or a widening part.
Also Check: How To Stop Hair Loss Due To Pcos
Infographic: All About Iron Deficiency
Iron deficiency often goes unnoticed while it does enough damage before you even realize you have it. The good news is you can treat it by taking iron supplements or iron-rich foods. But what if you have problems with iron absorption? In the following infographic, we look into the factors that impede iron absorption and the negative effects that follow this condition. Take a look.
Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team
The importance of iron for hair growth is well known. Iron deficiency leads to hair loss and female pattern baldness in a few. Hence, correcting the deficiency with food and supplements can significantly cut down the risk of hair loss. Iron can strengthen hair follicles, improve hair shine, thicken the hair, and nourish hair roots. Foods like turkey, tuna, shrimp, eggs, chicken, beef, scallop, tofu, spinach, broccoli, lentils, dates, figs, apricots, and string beans are rich in iron. However, do not consume these foods or iron supplements in excess as they may cause negative effects too.
You May Like: Do I Have Hair Loss
Ferritin And Hair Loss Treatment
The best way to treat hair loss with ferritin is to increase your iron levels. Your doctor might talk to you about taking supplements if you dont eat enough iron-rich foods .
While meat contains higher levels of iron than plant-based foods, you can still get some iron from eating whole grains, nuts, and legumes. Eating vitamin C-rich and iron-rich foods at the same time can also help your body absorb iron better.
If a food sensitivity is suspected, your doctor may recommend a blood test or an elimination diet.
Gluten intolerance is one of the possible causes of poor iron absorption, which can then lead to low ferritin and hair loss.
What Causes Iron Deficiency
A common reason for iron deficiency among women is blood loss due to menstruation and pregnancy. This can lead to severe anaemia. Before a woman can replenish or make up for the lost blood, the cyclic nature of periods makes this quite hard.
Another reason is, of course, poor diet. Depending on your age and sex, the Recommended Dietary Allowance can change. It should be:
- 8 mg/day for men and postmenopausal women of all ages
- 18 mg/day for premenopausal women
It is important to note that the iron requirements of vegans are 1.8 times higher than those who eat meat. It is because the amount of iron that enters the circulation system is less. Therefore, it wont have any positive effects on the body.
Malabsorption is another reason why iron deficiency may occur. Internal bleeding or gastrointestinal blood loss can cause iron deficiency in both males and females.
You May Like: How To Cover Thinning Hair
Thyroid Problems And Hair Loss
About 1 in 20 people in the UK is thought to have a thyroid problem.
Your thyroid is a gland in your neck that makes hormones to help your body function. They manage the speed at which you burn calories, how fast your heart beats and how quickly your old cells get replaced by new ones.
But if you have thyroid disease, your thyroid doesnt make the right amount of hormones, which can cause various symptoms including hair loss.
When To See A Doctor
If you think you might have any of these health conditions, or youre worried about hair loss, see a doctor. They can find out whats causing you to lose your hair and recommend the best treatment.
In some cases, lifestyle changes including using kinder shampoos, brushes and styling techniques will help keep your hair looking and feeling as healthy as possible.
Underlying health conditions arent the only possible reasons for hair loss read about other
Don’t Miss: Who To See About Hair Thinning
Can I Use Essential Oils To Promote Hair Growth
If you suspect you have iron deficiency anemia, you should immediately see your healthcare provider to make sure youre getting the right treatment, as hair loss can often be the least of your problems. But, to answer the question, yes, many essential oils are known to promote hair growth, including lavender oil, peppermint oil, tea tree oil, and others.
One study performed in 2016 showed that using lavender essential oil can help grow thicker and healthier hair.