Although hair shedding is considered normal and is a part of every hair cycle, excessive hair loss can be alarming and cause more stress and worry. Why is more hair falling out than normal? Is any of this under our control? Today we will be focusing on some of the most common causes of hair loss and effective treatments and tips available for preventing more hair loss in the future.
7 Common Causes of Hair Loss
This is a genetic condition that causes hair loss, known as male-pattern baldness. For men, hair typically begins to recede just above the temples and worsens over time. Other men may experience thinning hair at the crown of the head, often leading to partial or full baldness. Women generally experience a different pattern of hair loss than men, with thinning hair all over the head without the hairline receding. This condition in women rarely progresses to complete baldness. Androgenetic alopecia is more likely to happen with age, but it can develop any time after puberty. A lot of women with androgenetic alopecia develop it after going through menopause.
Shortly after giving birth, some women can experience more hair loss than normal due to a decrease in their estrogen levels. This is usually temporary and will generally resolve itself within a year.
- Use products made especially for fine or sensitive hair
- Apply conditioner towards the ends of your hair strands instead of your scalp to prevent weighing your hair down too much.
This is a condition that causes a lot of hair to fall out during the growth (anagen) phase of the hair cycle. Anagen effluvium can cause hair loss not only from the head, but other parts of the body as well, including eyebrows and eyelashes.
Common causes of Anagen effluvium:
- autoimmune disease
- fungal infection
Tips: If the anagen effluvium was caused by chemotherapy, finding ways to cool the scalp may help stop excess hair loss. Hair usually grows back within 3-6 months after finishing chemotherapy treatment.
This is a common reason for excess hair loss that involves your hair being stuck in the natural shedding (telogen) phase of its own growth cycle, causing you to lose much more hair than usual, sometimes by the handful. Telogen effluvium is usually a temporary condition that can take care of itself over time. However, we advise you to consult with your doctor to determine the underlying cause for your excess hair loss.
Possible causes of Telogen effluvium:
- Severe stress
- Certain medications
- Thyroid problems
- Rapid weight loss
Treatments: Your primary care physician will be able to treat the causes of telogen effluvium – for instance, if your doctor may prescribe you alternative medications if they suspect that certain medications you currently take is causing hair loss.
Another common reason for hair loss is alopecia areata, an autoimmune condition. The immune system fights against hair follicles as well as other healthy functioning parts of the body. This usually causes hair from the scalp, eyebrows, and eyelashes to fall out in small chunks.
Treatments: If you believe this condition may apply to you, consult with a doctor. They may be able to prescribe the proper medication to help your hair grow back.
Constantly sporting tight hairstyles such as braids, cornrows, ponytails, and tight buns can cause your hair to come loose and/or break. Progression of traction alopecia can lead to bald spots and/or thinning hair.
Tips: Try to avoid tight hairstyles to prevent further damage.
Having an imbalanced diet can also cause hair loss. Diet fads that have extreme restrictions can make you consume too little protein and certain critical vitamins (such as iron), causing you to lose more hair than normal.
Tips: Schedule a blood test with your doctor to help determine any nutritional deficiency. Your doctor may then prescribe you certain vitamin supplements (the recommended dosage may vary depending on your level of deficiency) or suggest certain foods to add to your diet to help stop the excessive hair shedding.
Platelet-rich plasma treatment can be another hair restoration solution to consider. Although PRP has been well-known for its youthful skincare benefits, it is now being explored to help with hair. PRP treatment involves injecting your own blood into your scalp in hopes of promoting hair growth. Similar to a vampire facial, this procedure begins with drawing your own blood and uses a centrifuge – a machine which spins the blood to separate the plasma from your red blood cells. The plasma plays an important role since it contains white blood cells and platelets – important growth factors that may benefit your hair. The plasma is then meticulously and directly injected in the hair follicles across the scalp. The entire process typically takes less than half an hour to complete. Consistent treatments are essential to benefit from PRP – performed once a month for about 3-4 months before treating once every 3-6 months after for ideal results. Generally, results will be visible within 1-3 months of treatment.
People with early hair loss tend to respond best to PRP treatments, although anyone experiencing hair loss is a great candidate. It is also important to note that PRP should be a part of a multi-faceted system to help your hair get back to a healthy thickness.
If you are located in New Jersey and are experiencing excessive hair loss and want to learn more about PRP, please call Healthy-Aging Medical Centers or visit our mainpage to schedule a consultation today.