Loosing your hair?


It is a common misconception that styling products cause thinning hair or may even cause permanent hair loss. Overloading the hair with certain formulas, particularly gel or wax, can make the hair look greasy and appear thinner; because of the way it 'clumps' together, it often makes the scalp more visible. If you overdo it with products or don't use them right, hair can get brittle and eventually the shaft will break. Any hair loss should be temporary - permanent loss comes when the root of your hair is hurt.

One should also take the natural hair-shedding process in consideration. People shed around 100 hairs per day as part of the hair growth cycle. These hairs often drop as we are moving around so we don't notice, however, when you are doing something where the focus is purely on your hair - such as washing, brushing or applying product - your attention is drawn to those that come out as you agitate your locks, causing pre-shed hairs to fall. What you are doing is not causing hair loss; it's simply making you more aware of this natural shedding.

Possible causes of temporary hair loss

  • Stress. Stress can make your hair fall out. Dealing with drama takes energy away from hair growth and redirects it to more important body needs. About 6 weeks to 3 months after stress starts, you may notice hair loss. It could take a while, but hair starts growing back once things are under control.
  • Diet & vitamin deficiencies. Your diet affects your hair. When you don't get enough iron or protein - or you get too much vitamin A - your hair can fall out. Get protein from meat, eggs, and beans. Get iron from fortified cereal, spinach, and clams. You can use supplements, but it's better to get your vitamin A from food so you don't overdo it.
  • Hormone changes. Hormone changes during menopause or pregnancy can speed up hair loss. Many women lose hair about 3 months after they've had a baby because of big hormone changes.
  • Chemotherapy. Some of the drugs used to beat back cancer unfortunately can also cause hair to fall out. Chemotherapy is like a nuclear bomb; it destroys rapidly dividing cells. That means cancer cells, but also rapidly dividing cells like hair. Once chemotherapy is stopped, hair will grow back although often it will come back with a different texture (perhaps curly when before it was straight) or a different colour.
  • Anabolic steroids. If you take anabolic steroids - the type abused by some athletes to bulk up muscle - you could lose your hair. Anabolic steroids can have the same impact on the body as polycystic ovary disease (PCOS), as the mechanism is the same. It should improve once you go off the drug.
  • Dramatic weight loss. Sudden weight loss is a form of physical trauma that can result in thinning hair, even if the weight loss is ultimately good for you. Sudden weight loss seems to shock the system and you'll have a six-month period of hair loss and then it corrects itself. Loss of hair along with noticeable weight loss may also be a sign of an eating disorder such as anorexia or bulimia.
  • Medication & illness. Some medicines, infections and diseases can also cause you to lose hair, for example an underactive thyroid gland. Because hair loss can be a sign of other problems, tell your doctor so you can get to the root of the issue.

Take care of heated appliances and tight hairdos

Care should be taken when using heated appliances. Hair loss from styling damage is a real issue. Heated hair tools such as hairdryers and hair straighteners can reach remarkable temperatures that can damage the hair easily. Frequent over-use of scorching heated appliances can cause hair breakage where the hair snaps along the shaft. This can lead to thinner-looking, 'frizzy' hair and, in drastic cases can cause Traction Alopecia, a condition caused by applying too much tension and stress to the hair follicles. This form of hair loss is most often associated with tight hairstyles such as braids, dreadlocks and hair extensions, which tend to be the primary causes. Luckily treatment for Traction Alopecia can often help to regrow hair, as long as the cause of the tension is also removed.


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