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.
What Shampoo Should I Use For Thinning Hair
Because thinning hair can happen for a number of different reasons, you might have to go through a trial-and-error period to find the shampoo that works best for you.
Some shampoos are aimed at reducing hair loss, while others aim to thicken existing hair.
Prescription-strength shampoo for thinning hair is also an option that you can speak with your doctor about.
Pathology And Pathogenesis Of Fphl
The histological hallmark common to male pattern hair loss and FPHL is miniaturization of hair follicles with a progressive transformation of terminal hair follicles into vellus-like follicles. Terminal hair follicles have a shaft diameter of greater than 0.06 mm, whereas vellus-like follicles are defined as hairs with a hair shaft diameter of 0.03 mm or less and are thinner than the hairs inner root sheath. In addition, women with FPHL have more follicles in the telogen or shedding phase of the hair cycle, and fewer in the anagen or growth phase .
The pathogenesis of MPHL involves activation of hair follicle cytoplasmic androgen receptors . Both testosterone and dihydrotestosterone activate the AR, however DHT binds 5 times more avidly than testosterone and DHT is thought to be the principle androgen involved in MPHL. Testosterone is converted into DHT by 5-reductase , and DHT in turn is converted into estrogen by the cytochrome P450 enzyme aromatase . Two isoforms of 5-reductase have been identified and separated on pH optima, substrate affinity, and tissue distribution . The type 2 isoform is found in the dermal papilla of the hair follicle and inhibition of this isoenzyme with finasteride is the principle treatment for MPHL .
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Reasons For Hair Thinning
Your genes.These play a key role in male- or female-pattern baldness, which is a common part of aging. If youâre a woman, your hair may get thinner overall, but the condition isnât likely to make your hairline recede or bring on baldness. If youâre a man, your hair may thin near the top of your head, and youâre more likely to have a retreating hairline and balding.
Stress. Certain stressful events can make your hair look thinâsometimes a couple months after the stressful situation. Itâs a condition called telogen effluvium, and your hair usually grows back on its own. Triggers for stress-induced hair loss can include:
Ask About These Salon Techniques And Olaplex
Ask your hairdresser about a new product called Olaplex, which mends broken disulfide bonds within hair strands. This is applied before or after your usual color or other salon treatment, then neutralised and washed off.
After the first use, I noticed my hair was stronger and more lustrous. After the second application, a month later, my hair regained its sheen and looked healthier than since I was in my 30s!
You can also have real hair woven into your own hair to disguise patchy hair loss or thin panels.
Have you found any product or treatment that has improved your hair health? Please let us know in the comments below.
Let’s Have a Conversation!
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How To Stop Hair Thinning
Now, onto the solutions. Peter offered up some valuable tips on how to treat thinning hair. First up limit heat as much as possible. Heat styling be kept at a minimum as it leaves hair dehydrated and prone to damage, If you are going to use heat though, a heat protectant is a must.
Likewise, chemical treatments should be avoided i.e colouring, bleaching, straightening, perming., so if youre a slave to your regular full head of highlights, it may be worth cutting back and seeing if your hair improves.
In terms of styling, he says to avoid or reduce styling hair in tight styles such as braids, twists, buns or ponytails and to avoid twisting or rubbing hair, so loose styles that dont pull on the scalp are the way to go.
Editors tip: While you cant get back the hair that youve lost, volumising hair products can help to reverse the visible effects and cover up any sparser areas.
A great option for those with fine hair, the TRESemmé Collagen+ Fullness Shampoo and Conditioner are infused with collagen and glycerin to plump up strands and provide instant fullness. The shampoo also contains micellar technology for gentle cleansing, too, so wont strip your hair of its natural oils.
Hormonal Changes: The Most Common Reason For Thinning Hair In Older Women
As women age, the levels of estrogen they produce begin to decline. Estrogen does several things that promote thick hair. Therefore, the loss contributes to thinner hair in several ways as well. First, estrogen lengthens the growth stage of hair. This means more follicles of hair are growing at a given time when estrogen production is at an ideal level. It also stimulates the growth of new hair, after the old hair has shed.
Estrogen plays an important role in the overall appearance of hair. It is easy to see why an imbalance could cause hair to begin to look thinner over time. There is very little that can be done to increase the natural production of estrogen once menopause has started. However, phytoestrogens, bioidentical, or synthetic estrogens can be utilized to support estrogenic activity in the body.
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Be Mindful Of Birth Control Pills
Birth control pills are a form of contraception that works by suppressing ovulation and/or making it more difficult for a fertilized egg to implant into the lining of the uterus. Hormonal hair loss in women may occur when women start or stop taking certain kinds of contraceptives. The hormones that make birth control pills effective may also cause hair thinning in women who use them. You are more likely to experience this side effect from birth control pills if you have a family history of hair loss. Stopping the pill is also a cause of hair loss in women. Hormones are not the only medication that may be associated with hair loss. Blood thinners and blood pressure medications may do it, too. So can drugs used to treat depression, heart disease, and arthritis.
Female Hair Loss: Causes And Treatment
Far from being my crowning glory, my hair has been the bane of my life. But one question has always plagued me: is my problem on my head, or in my head? While I’ve suspected my hair has been thinning for decades, few people ever believed me and at times I even doubted it myself.
There were years when my hair seemed fuller, when I’d scrunch it into ringlets and delight at its apparent thickness. At other times, particularly in my 30s, I’d fret over the wispy strands at the front of my head or when I saw too much scalp in the mirror.
My friends always reassured me I had a good head of hair. Most of the GPs I saw reacted the same, despite my tears and protestations. I had no bald patches or visible gaps so they’d put it down to stress or would test my iron and thyroid levels, which appeared normal.
Some of my hair loss over the years is easily explained. I developed an eating disorder and recall gathering clumps of hair off my pink bedroom carpet when I was under-eating in my teens.
Weight loss, low iron levels, poor diet and stress, along with thyroid and hormonal imbalances, can all cause hair to fall, trichologists say. Hair needs a healthy diet and a well-functioning endocrine system to flourish.
“Genetic hair loss is the only hair loss in which the follicle gradually gets smaller and finer and producers smaller and finer hair until it stops altogether and then you get the thinning,” says Lyons.
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The Thyroid Disease Connection
The thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland that rests in the front base of the neck. It secretes thyroid hormones that are used by every cell in the body. There’s a connection between hair loss in women and thyroid disease. Imbalances in thyroid hormone levels are a common reason for hair loss in women. Too much thyroid hormone and too little thyroid hormone may both trigger hair loss. Other symptoms of hyperthyroidism include weight loss, rapid heart rate, inability to fall asleep or stay asleep, and anxiety. In addition to hair loss, hypothyroidism may be associated with weight gain, fatigue, feeling cold, slow heart rate, and constipation. Luckily, thyroid hormone imbalances are easily detectable with blood tests. Treatment helps alleviate symptoms, including hair loss.
Heres How The Hair Growth Cycle Works:
Ok, its science-y but very cool, basically each hair follicle on our scalp undergoes three stages of a life cycle, explains Dr Wong.
AnagenThis is the active growing phase, which can last between 2-7 years during which the hair becomes longer and thicker.
CatagenAfter anagen, the hair follicle moves into the short transitional phase called catagen when the hair fibre stops growing, followed by the resting phase telogen which lasts around 3 months.
TelogenDuring telogen the old hair is gradually pushed up towards the skin surface before it is then shed naturally and replaced with a new emerging anagen hair.
On a typical head of hair each follicle is at a different stage at different times so you probably wont notice it happening. Very cool. This cycle continues repeatedly throughout our lifetime and each hair follicle is cycling independently of neighbouring follicles meaning that human hair growth is asynchronised, says Dr Wong.
Its important to note that hair loss is a very common problem for women much more so that people realise. “Research shows that at least 1 in 3 women will suffer from hair loss or reduced hair volume at some point in their lifetime,” says Anabel Kingsley. So, if you are losing strands, it’s important not to freak out, your mane willrecover. In the meantime, here’s everything you need to know…
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Medications To Treat Hair Loss
Treatment depends on the underlying cause, says Dr. Scott. Sometimes simply addressing a medical condition prompting hair loss will be enough for the hair to regrow. In other instances, a woman might consider a medication like minoxidil , which helps with certain types of hair loss, or another treatment to replace or regrow lost hair.
A newer option being used to treat hair loss is platelet-rich plasma injections. For this treatment, the doctor draws your blood, divides it into its separate components, recombines the blood fluid with a high concentration of platelets , and introduces the resulting preparation back into the scalp.
The science on this isnt totally worked out. We still dont completely understand the mechanism behind PRP, but growth factors contained in platelets can stimulate regeneration of hair follicles and other tissues as well, says Dr. Scott.
In addition, low-level LED laser lights have been found to be helpful in regrowing hair in some cases. Its likely that even more treatments will be developed in the near future.
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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Different Types Of Hair Loss
There are lots of different types of hair loss. It can take the form of “thinning” or involve a total loss of hair. It can be gradual or sudden it can affect the old and the young.
Hair loss can be genetic, or as a result of extreme stress, a medical condition or treatment.
Hair loss is a well-known side effect of chemotherapy. It’s also common for women to lose more hair than usual up to 3 months after they’ve given birth.
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.
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How Can You Treat Female Hair Loss
Regardless of the cause, the goal of treating thinning hair is to encourage the hair follicles to function to the best of their ability. Its important to have realistic goals: Of course I want my hair to go from puny shedding strands to 1970s-style Cher goddess hair, but alas, I know that is not going to happen. Before starting any treatment, it is important to consult with your dermatologist to make sure the treatment path you decide is the one that is right for you.
In the past, and during this particular bout of shedding, I took Nutrafol, a supplement that contains a combination of botanical ingredients and vitamins to support healthy hair follicles. It is formulated to treat hair loss in multiple ways, containing highly-concentrated botanicals to support hair at every stage of the growth cycle, Engelman explains. She also recommends Prose, particularly their Root Source product for those with thinning hair. The supplements are custom-made for each person, and theyre packed with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and plant extracts designed to boost our stores of nutrients and target the causes of thinning hair. They have been proven effective in clinical trials, and are a fantasticand healthyway to address hair thinning/loss, she says.