Why Consulting A Dermatologist Is Crucial For Hair Loss
For both women and men, its important to see adermatologist for many reasons if youre experiencing hair thinning:
- Dermatologists can offer expert advice and help you get to the root of the problem more quickly than if you try to self-diagnose the issue on your own.
- You can be prescribed medications, and get a biopsy if necessary.
- Sometimes, your dermatologist will identify a more serious underlying medical issue that is causing your hair to fall out.
The only way to treat hair loss effectively is to identify the cause, said Dr. Kevin DeHart. We look at each patients total health history in order to diagnose them. There are a lot of reasons for hair loss, and its everything from a thyroid issue to a new medication to a recent trauma.
The best course of action is determined in part by the type of thinning you have. A scalp biopsy may be done in order to see hairs under the skin. Working alongside Dr. Kevin DeHart and Dr. Kelly DeHart, ParisersDr. Ashley Reed performs biopsies for us and helps determine the diagnosis. However, scalp biopsy is not common and only 10 percent of patients who come to Pariser Dermatology for thinning hair need a scalp biopsy.
Under the microscope youre going to see different things, for example the follicle size of the hair. This can show us, for example, whether testosterone has influenced the hair loss or if broken hairs indicate trichotillomania, which is pulling out hairs.
Healthy Hair And Hair Loss: The Basics
Before we get into the details, lets take a deep breath and remember that some hair loss is actually perfectly normal, every day.
The average person, for instance, has about 100,000 follicles of hair just on her head, and they will typically expect to lose 100 strands or more from normal hair loss every day.
This so-called normal hair loss is really just part of your hairs three follicle life cycle phases, consisting of the anagen phase, catagen phase and the final telogen phase.
Hair growth as we know it happens in the first, anagen phase, during which time about 90 percent of your follicles are actively growing longer.
The catagen phase comes next this signals the beginning of the end for those active follicles, which leads into that death-y telogen resting phase.
This is where the hair falls out and the follicle itself rests until such a time as it starts the cycle all over again.
So to sum it all up, normal hair is actually only about 90 percent of your total potential growing capacity, with about 10 percent of your living follicles resting at any one given time.
So hair loss, then, is simply what happens when this delicate balance becomes unbalanced.
Should You See A Dermatologist For Hair Loss
Are you worried that you are losing hair rapidly? Are you overwhelmed and confused about what you are supposed to do and who you are supposed to talk to? Do you perhaps ask yourself Should I see a dermatologist for hair loss? Well, read on to discover the answer to that question in just a few minutes!
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Are There Complications/side Effects Of Treatment
Minoxidil may irritate your scalp and cause dryness, scaling, itching and/or redness. See your dermatologist if this happens.
With Minoxidil you might also see hair growing in other places other than your scalp . Wash your face after you apply Minoxidil and make sure you avoid other areas when you apply it.
What Types Of Physicians Can Treat Alopecia
In truth, there are a few different types of physicians who might be able to provide a basic alopecia, or hair loss, diagnosis. The following professionals typically encounter patients who suffer with thinning, shedding, or balding hair.
Hair Stylists are among the first professionals to notice signs of hair loss. While these individuals are not licensed medical professionals, they can help you determine whether or not certain hard-to-see areas are receding, losing volume, or becoming thinner. It is recommended that you see a licensed medical professional if a stylist or hairdresser notices such signs.
Trichologists are professionals who have studied trichology, or the health of the hair and scalp. Not all trichologists are licensed medical professionals, however. For effective hair loss treatment, we recommend patients choose a hair loss clinic and/or licensed medical professional to ensure accurate diagnosis and treatment.
Endocrinologists are licensed medical professionals who specialize in the endocrine system, hormones, and the diseases that result from hormonal imbalance. Hormonal imbalance can often cause hair loss, so it is common for this type of physician to see patients who suffer with thinning, shedding, or balding. They do not specialize in hair restoration, however.
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Reasons To See A Trichologist
Trichologists treat a wide range of hair and scalp conditions:
Male and Female Hair Loss
Pattern baldness is a common form of hair loss, or alopecia, in men and women. For men, hair is lost in a well-defined pattern, starting above both temples, eventually receding to form a characteristic âMâ shape. Women are more likely to experience overall hair thinning without a receding hairline.
In addition to the emotional aspects of hair loss, pattern baldness in men has been associated with several serious medical conditions, including coronary heart disease, enlargement of the prostate, diabetes, and high blood pressure.
Hair shedding, or telogen effluvium, occurs when large sections of hair fall detach from the scalp. This can be caused by several conditions, including stress, surgery, high fevers, blood loss, hormonal change, and childbirth. Hair shedding is a common side effect of some chemotherapy drugs.
If youâre experiencing hair shedding, a trichologist might be a good place to start. They should be able to direct you to a physician who can help you with underlying conditions.
Scarring alopecia is caused by inflammatory disorders, chemicals like hair relaxers, and several fungal conditions.
Excessive Hair Growth in Women
What Kind Of Doctor Treats Hair Loss
When you notice signs of hair loss, what type of doctor should you see? Its a common first question for nearly every man or woman who first notices signs of thinning, balding, or shedding. Hair loss treatment is a multi-million dollar business, and it seems theres no end to the number of different specialists, shampoos, and pills that promise to restore areas of balding scalp. Selecting the right physician will make it easier to get an accurate hair loss diagnosis from the start, which will provide the framework for an efficient treatment regimen.
Before taking a closer look at the different types of doctors who are capable of telling you more about your hair loss, it helps to explore a few of the most common reasons why men and women lose their hair. With the following causes in mind, it becomes easier to see why certain specialists are more capable of providing an expert diagnosis than others.
A few reasons for hair loss include:
- A skin condition
- Prescription medications
At our Institute, we assess each of these factors with comprehensive methodology. Our surgeons implement the most advanced technologies available to get to the root of your hair loss and develop a personalized treatment plan.
The results speak for themselves. Click the following link to view images of real patients, before and after hair transplant procedures.
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Is Female Hair Thinning Reversible
Is it reversible? While some forms of AFAB hair loss are temporary, female pattern baldness is permanent and irreversible without treatment. However, proper treatment can stop the hair loss and potentially help regrow some lost hair. Youll need to stay on this treatment long-term to prevent losing your hair again.
Causes And Symptoms Of Alopecia
Alopecia areata is an autoimmune disorder that causes you to lose hair and often leaves little bald spots on your head. Our hair is made up of mostly protein. When our body does not have enough protein, the hairs enter the resting phase. This causes us to lose hair and hair to become brittle and fall out. Alopecia is both hereditary and hormonal. It affects both males and females and can happen at any age. There are many causes related to alopecia. Causes include severe or chronic illness, thyroid disease, low-protein diets, low iron levels and improper hair care. It is also common after childbirth. If hair loss occurs, the hairs may enter a resting phase and are lost without immediate replacement. It could last up to nine months but should resolve itself without treatment. This also may be the case if you have a chronic illness.
Alopecia occurs when hair follicles are attacked by your own body, causing clumps of hair to fall out. While rare, there is a potential to lose all the hair on your head and/or on your entire body. Males are more likely to lose all their hair while women mostly experience thinning. Sometimes the hair grows back for good and other times it grows back and then falls out again shortly after. Unfortunately, alopecia is not curable, but can and should be treated by a dermatologist. During diagnosis, a skin biopsy may be performed and examined to properly diagnose the alopecia.
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Which Doctor Should I See For My Hair Loss
Hair loss is a condition that affects a vast majority of the population. If you are a hair loss victim, there are treatment options available you dont need to be a silent sufferer. Deciding to act is the first step in the treatment process. If you are ready to do something that will stop or reverse the hair loss process, youll need the help of a professional. But who should you turn to? Your general physician? A dermatologist? An endocrinologist?
The answer is
Yes. You should schedule appointments with all three types of doctors.
There are lots of unanswered questions about hair loss. Finding the cause of your hair loss might take a lot of work. Getting advice from multiple sources is the best way to receive the most accurate diagnosis. Any doctor who has an interest in hair loss and has the knowledge to back up his or her claim can help. Find a doctor who wont dismiss your problem as unimportant or say its no big deal. It is a big deal!
How do you know if a doctor can help with your problem?
Ask some questions. Try calling and talking to the prospective doctor on the phone. If you cant speak to the actual doctor, chat with the receptionist. Ask if this particular doctor treats a lot of hair loss cases. Does he or she perform blood work? What type of treatment does the doctor usually prescribe?
What is the difference between an endocrinologist and a dermatologist?
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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Your Hair Is Falling Out Rapidly And Suddenly
More often than not, male pattern baldness is something that happens gradually. While the rate at which men lose their hair varies from person to person and is usually determined by genetics, rarely does it cause large clumps of hair to fall out.
However, for some guys, male pattern baldness is an obvious problem thats defined by lots and lots of hair shedding.
If youve developed a large bald spot seemingly overnight, or if youve started to notice your hair falling out in large amounts , its usually a sign that youre experiencing significant hair loss.
This could be due to male pattern baldness, or it could be hair shedding caused by an illness or other health issue. In any case, its best to make an appointment with a hair loss doctor to learn about whats causing your hair loss, as well as what you can do to stop it.
What Is Androgenic Alopecia
Androgenic alopecia is the most common type of hair loss in men. According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, more than 50 percent of all men over the age of 50 will be affected by male pattern baldness to some extent.
There are many factors that can cause androgenic alopecia. Genetics or a family history of baldness may cause it to occur. Inherited male pattern baldness typically has no side effects.
Besides androgenic alopecia, there can be other causes of hair loss, like medication, thyroid conditions, or other illnesses.
Since there are many underlying causes of hair loss, it can be helpful to consult a dermatologist before you start any type of treatment.
A dermatologist who understands this condition can determine if genetics, an underlying medical condition, or environmental irritants are the cause. You can find a dermatologist who specializes in hair loss through the American Academy of Dermatology.
If youre experiencing rapid hair loss or thinning, you should see a doctor to decide the best course of action. Your doctor will likely take a thorough look at your medical and family history and examine your scalp.
They may also do the following:
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Other Causes Of Hair Loss
Other causes of hair loss include:
- Alopecia areata, an autoimmune disease in which your immune system attacks hair follicles, resulting in round hairless patches on any area of the scalp or body. Severe cases involve many bald patches of hair or complete loss of hair on the scalp or body, although in some cases there is hair thinning without distinct patches of baldness. The hair loss usually is not permanent. Hair grows back within 1 year for many people.
- Diseases, such as lupus, syphilis, or cancer. Hair may grow back on its own. In some cases treatment may help.
- Side effects of medicines or medical treatments, such as blood thinners or chemotherapy. Hair usually grows back after you stop using the medicines or when the treatment is over.
- Trichotillomania, a compulsive behaviour in which a person pulls hair out of the scalp, eyelashes, or eyebrows. There is usually mounting tension before pulling and a feeling of relief afterward. Trichotillomania often results in noticeable hair loss.
- Injury to the scalp, including scarring.
- Changes in hormone levels. Childbirth, taking birth control pills, or changes in a woman’s menstrual cycle can affect the hair growth cycle and cause hair loss. Hair usually will grow back.