Hair loss, also known as baldness or alopecia, often leads to psychological distress and even low self-esteem. This is understandable considering that thick, shiny, and healthy hair has always been associated with youth, attractiveness, fertility, and health in adults. Unfortunately, hair loss catches up with some of us one way or another. If you are experiencing signs of baldness, please consult Dr. Ahmad of MINTS Medical Spa Chicago for assistance. In the meantime, let us find out about those signs and what’s fuelling them.
Baldness can manifest in different manners depending on the underlying factors. It could be sudden, gradual, exclusive to the scalp, all over the body, temporary, or permanent. Here are the signs:
The human hair undergoes constant growth cycles where each strand’s phase is independent of the other. These phases include:
On average, we lose 100 hairs a day but this is not enough to cause any noticeable thinning because there is new hair growing at the same time. However, when this cycle is disrupted or the hair follicle is destroyed and scarring tissue grows in its place, baldness begins to manifest. Here are the typical factors influencing loss of hair:
Heredity: The most popular driver for hair loss is family history. It is referred to as male-pattern hair loss (MPHL) or female-pattern hair loss (FPHL). This form of alopecia occurs gradually and is easy to predict – the hairline recedes in men while women experience thinning of hair.
Hormonal imbalance: Hormonal changes as a result of pregnancy, childbirth, thyroid issues, or menopause could cause hair loss. Even switching or going off birth controls has been known to influence baldness.
Medicines and Supplements: some drugs such as those issued for cancer, depression, arthritis, gout, heart problems, and hypertension could have hair loss for a side effect. Chemotherapy, especially, is designed to destroy rapidly dividing cells and that includes hair.
Overstyling: vigorous hairstyling (like tight braids, pigtails or cornrows) and excessive use of treatments (chemical relaxers, hot-oil treatments, or any kind of harsh chemicals/ heat) could result in loss of hair. These practices can affect the root of the hair and cause it to never grow back.
Unfortunately, most cases of baldness are as a result of genetics and this means that it cannot be prevented. For the rest, however, here’s what you can do to maintain your precious hair: