Sunburn On Your Scalp
The benefit of having a thick head of hair is that the top of your head stays protected from UV rays.
But once your hair starts thinning and you begin to lose that protection, youll find that your scalp is more susceptible to sunburn.
If youre not spending more time outdoors than usual and your scalp is becoming more sensitive to the sun, you could be losing some of your hair.
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Other Possible Causes Of Hair Loss Or Bald Spots
Although androgenetic alopecia is by far the most common cause of balding, there are other conditions that can cause you to lose hair or develop bald spots on your scalp.
However, unlike alopecia, these conditions usually dont follow a predictable progression with hair loss. This means they dont cause your hair to recede in a pattern thats typical of balding.
The following conditions can produce varying degrees of hair loss, some of which can be permanent and others that are reversible:
Sometimes balding is a side effect of an underlying medical condition. It may be associated with:
The most common treatments for male or female pattern baldness include the following options:
Crash Diets Are Dangerous
Crash diets and fad diets promise quick weight loss, but most do not work and can be dangerous. If you lose 15 pounds or more very quickly, you may lose a significant amount of hair within a matter of months. Inadequate protein and nutrients is one of the potential reasons for hair loss in women. Stick to a healthy, balanced eating plan. Fresh fruit, vegetables, lean meats, and complex carbs give your body the fats, proteins, carbohydrates, vitamins, and minerals you need to maintain a healthy body, including a full head of hair. Other dietary risk factors for hair loss? Excess vitamin A may set the stage for your luscious locks to fall out.
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Cosmetic Options For Hair Loss
When medical treatments fall short, women can also consider cosmetic options to make up for lost hair, such as wearing a wig. At the other end of the spectrum is hair transplantation, a surgical procedure that moves active follicles from the back of the scalp to areas where the hair is thinning. Once transplanted, the hair grows normally.
Hair transplantation is typically performed as an outpatient surgical procedure. In appropriate patients, it can be extremely successful, but it wont work for everyone, says Dr. Scott. One drawback is the expense: it can cost thousands of dollars and is not covered by insurance. The procedure also requires recovery time. And it may not be appropriate for women who have diffuse thinning across the whole scalp. Its more effective in treating smaller, more defined areas of balding.
You’re Getting Too Much Vitamin A
Overdoing vitamin A-containing supplements or medications can trigger hair loss, according to the American Academy of Dermatology. Just FYI: The Daily Value for vitamin A is 5,000 International Units per day for adults and kids over age 4 supplements can contain 2,500 to 10,000 IU. So any more than that and you could risk some strands falling out.
The good news: This is also a reversible cause of hair loss, and once the excess vitamin A is halted, hair should start growing normally again.
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How Can I Prevent Hair Loss
There are things you can do to prevent further hair loss. Dont wear tight hairstyles like braids, ponytails, or buns that put too much pressure on your hair. Over time, those styles permanently damage your hair follicles.
Certain beauty regimens can worsen or cause hair loss.
If youre currently losing hair, use a gentle baby shampoo to wash your hair. Unless you have extremely oily hair, consider washing your hair only every other day. Always pat the hair dry and avoid rubbing your hair.
Styling products and tools are also common culprits in hair loss. Examples of products or tools that can affect hair loss include:
- blow dryers
Style Your Hair Right
Hair stylists are a great resource for help for hair loss in women. A new haircut or hairstyle may be just what you need to make your hair appear fuller. Ask your stylist for advice about getting a shorter cut, parting your hair in a different location, or adding curls or waves to add volume to your hair. Products for hair loss in women include using styling products designed for thin hair. Some products are added to the roots while hair is damp before blowing dry. Some cosmetic products can help disguise the appearance of bald spots. Keratin fiber hair cosmetics have a static charge that makes hair appear fuller than it is. Ask your stylist or dermatologist for recommendations about the products and strategies that will work best for you.
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What Are The Common Causes Of Hair Loss In Women
What causes hair loss?
- Hair style: Your style of hair can cause hair loss when your hair is arranged in ways that pull on your roots, like tight ponytails, braids, or corn rows. This type of hair loss is called traction alopecia. If hair follicles are damaged, the loss can be permanent.
- Vitamin deficiency.
- Over processed scalp hair .
What causes anagen effluvium hair loss?
- Toxic substances, including chemotherapy, radiation therapy and some medications. These cause sudden hair loss that can occur anywhere on your body. It happens to hair in the growth stage. Sometimes, this type of hair loss can be permanent if your hair follicles are damaged.
What causes telogen effluvium hair loss?
- Extreme physical stress or shock to your body: This causes temporary hair loss. This category includes events like losing a lot of weight, surgery, anemia, illness and having a baby.
- Extreme emotional stress: mental illness, the death of a loved one, etc.
- An abnormal thyroid.
- Medications and supplements: blood pressure medicines, gout medicines and high doses of Vitamin A.
- Hormone changes caused by pregnancy, menopause or birth control pills.
What causes FPHL ?
- Genes: Your familys genes can cause thinning of hair along the top of your head.
- Aging: Hormone changes as you age can cause balding.
- Menopause: This type of hair loss often gets worse when estrogen is lost during menopause.
There are also some conditions that affect hair loss:
Natural And Alternative Therapies
According to the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases , alternative therapies may not help hair regrow and many are not supported by medical research. However, other treatments that reportedly improve alopecia areata include Chinese herbs, acupuncture, zinc and vitamin supplements, evening primrose oil and aroma therapy.
Viviscal, a natural supplement, has also shown more hair growth in men compared to those who took fish extract in clinical trials, Day said.
The NIAMSD recommends discussing any alternative treatments with physicians before use.
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Medical And Other Conditions
If hair follicles are uniform in size, or if the hair loss is sudden, it is likely to be caused by something other than heredity, like a medical condition, Rogers says.
There are a wide range of conditions that can bring on hair loss, with some of the most common being pregnancy, thyroid disorders, and anemia. Others include autoimmune diseases, polycystic ovary syndrome , and skin conditions such as psoriasis and seborrheic dermatitis, Rogers says.
Though there has been a link between menopause and hair loss, Roberts says she doesnât think there is a direct correlation. It could be that menopause and hair loss just occur at the same age.
Other reasons for hair loss include extreme stress physical trauma like surgery or intense illness dramatic weight loss over a short period of time and taking too much Vitamin A, Roberts says. And hair loss can occur a couple of weeks to six months after any of these experiences.
âSomeone can have surgery and be just fine and then two weeks later their hair starts falling out,â Roberts says. âIt can be very scary when it starts falling out in big clumps.â
Physical Trauma: A Shock To Hair Follicles
When your body is under serious physical stress, the natural cycle of hair growth and resting can be disrupted, resulting in hair loss, often in the form of thinning hair strands may come out in clumps. Any shock to the system, such as being in a severe accident, undergoing surgery, experiencing burns, or becoming very ill, can also shock the hair follicles, resulting in up to 75 percent of your hair falling out, sometimes months after the fact.
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Cancer Treatment Is A Trigger
Radiation and chemotherapy used to treat cancer are some of the common causes of hair loss in women. Both therapies harm hair follicles in addition to killing cancer cells. People undergoing cancer treatment often experience dramatic hair loss as a result of these therapies. They may wake up with clumps of hair on their pillow or they may lose large amounts of hair in the shower. Rapid hair loss in women often starts within 2 weeks of beginning treatment. It may be worst between 1 to 2 months into therapy. The scalp may be extra sensitive during this time. It may be irritating to wash, brush, and comb hair. The good news is that once cancer treatment is over, hair tends to grow back.
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- Scabs or crusts are present in the hair
- Ringworm of the scalp suspected.
- Broken hairs from tight hair style and pimples are present in scalp
- Patch of hair loss and cause not known
- Widespread hair thinning and cause not known
- Hair loss from nervous habit of twisting the hair
- Hair loss is a chronic problem
- Normal hair loss suspected, but doesn’t grow back within 6 months
- You have other questions or concerns
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What About Pregnancy Hair Loss
Pregnancy may cause many changes in the scalp hair. As the hormones fluctuate during pregnancy, a large number of women feel their hair thickens and becomes fuller. This may be related to change in the number of hairs cycling in the growth phase of hair growth, but the exact reason is unknown. Quite often, there may be a loss of hair after delivery or a few months later which will eventually normalize.
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What Is Trichotillomania
This refers to the habitual pulling or twisting of one’s own hair. The scalp and eyelashes are often affected. Unlike alopecia areata patches, which are perfectly smooth, hair patches in trichotillomania show broken-off hairs.
- Treatment is often entirely behavioral.
- One has to notice the behavior and then consciously stop.
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Prevention For Hair Loss
While most hair loss and baldness are caused by genetics, there are a few ways to avoid and fight preventable types of hair loss. Some include:
- Being more gentle with your hair. Avoid tugging when brushing or combing your hair, especially when your hair is wet. A comb with wide teeth can help prevent pulling out hair. Avoid using harsh treatments for your hair and limit the tension that may come from certain styles.
- Talk to your doctor about medications and supplements you may be taking that could be causing your hair loss.
- Protect your hair from harsh sunlight or UV damage and other intense sources of ultraviolet light.
- Stop smoking. There are several studies showing an association between smoking and baldness.
- Eating foods that contain vitamin A, B, C, D, and E can help with hair growth. Iron, zinc, and protein are also linked to helping improve the strength of your hair.
Causes Of Alopecia Areata
In general, alopecia areata tends to be a genetic condition, so if a person has a family history of alopecia areata occurring, they are more likely to suffer from the condition. Alopecia areata has also been linked to autoimmune diseases, and in such cases the person’s own immune system attacks their hair follicles, resulting in hair loss.
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What Is Traction Alopecia
This is a small or localized hair loss area caused by repetitive or persistent pulling or traction on hair roots.
- Tight braids and ponytails can pull hard enough on hairs to make them fall out. If this happens, it’s best to choose hairstyles that put less tension on the hair.
- Doing this sooner helps to avoid permanent damage.
What Are The Management Options
The management of alopecia areata can be challenging because most interventions have not been evaluated in randomized controlled trials.
Spontaneous regrowth is very common in patchy alopecia areata therefore, a reasonable option for some patients will be to wait for spontaneous recovery. Intralesional corticosteroids are widely regarded as first-line therapy for patchy alopecia areata based on observations of tufts of regrowth at injection sites. Intradermal injections of triamcinolone acetonide given every 26 weeks stimulate localized regrowth in 60%67% of cases. Adverse outcomes include pain, cutaneous atrophy and changes to skin pigment.,
For extensive alopecia areata , topical immunotherapy is recommended based on evidence from half-head studies.,, This treatment involves inducing a localized allergic contact dermatitis reaction by weekly applications of 2,3-diphenylcyclopropenone painted directly onto the scalp. The largest reported series reported cosmetically acceptable hair regrowth in 17% of patients with alopecia totalis, 60% of patients with 75%99% hair loss, 88% of patients with 50%74% hair loss, and all patients with less than 50% hair loss. Regional lymphadenopathy, generalized eczema and skin pigment changes were the most common adverse events.
Other treatment options include systemic corticosteroids, short-contact dithranol therapy, topical minoxidil, psoralen plus ultraviolet A photochemotherapy and systemic immunosuppressants.
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Medication For Hair Loss
Minoxidil, or Rogaine, is a topical medication that is used to treat female pattern hair loss and male-pattern baldness. It was initially developed as a blood pressure medication and was used off-label to treat hair loss until it became FDA-approved for that purpose. Minoxidil can slow the progression of hair loss. Most women who use the medication experience regrowth of hair. The medication needs to be used continuously to maintain results. Other types of treatment work for different kinds of hair loss. Corticosteroids help suppress the immune response that damages hair follicles in people who have alopecia areata. Once the follicles recover, hair can grow back. If nutritional deficiencies underlie hair loss, eating a healthy diet with adequate and protein and nutrients can help you regrow hair. Certain medical problems may trigger hair loss. Adequately treating these conditions may help restore hair growth.