Hair loss seems to be a growing concern among women today.
So when are you loosing too much hair, what causes it, and what can be done about it??
Balding is generally hereditary, following male or female pattern thinning and ultimately resulting in permanent balding. Whereas the causes of hair loss most commonly seen in the salon among female clients is often temporary, the hair growing back once the underlying condition, is stabilized.
Firstly it is important to understand that it is normal to loose up to an average of a 100 hair stands a day. Hair follows a growth cycle, which consists of a growing stage of about 2-5 years. About 90% of the hair stands will be at this stage at one time. The next stage is the resting stage, the remaining 10% of hair will be moving though this stage to the falling out stage and then to a new growth stage in the hair follicle when the new hair will begin the growing stage again.
So what causes abnormal and excessive hair loss?
- Hair styling routines such as tight ponytails and braiding can cause hair thinning especially around the hairline.
- Stress or shock is another cause of abnormal hair loss, this includes the effects of sudden weight loss, illness or death of a loved one. Hair pulling is also a result of stress and leads to balding patches on the scalp.
- Poor nutrition or a lack of certain vitamins and minerals can also cause hair to fall out. A lack of iron is a common cause of hair thinning. Crash diets and eating disorders also cause abnormal hair loss.
- A thyroid imbalance is another common cause of hair loss. Hormones have a big impact on the hair and hormone imbalances or changes can cause hair to fall out. This is often see after pregnancy when the hormones return to normal. Another common time this type of hair thinning is noticed, is at menopause.
- Excessive exposure to the harmful UV rays of the sun speeds up the aging process of the scalp by thickening the epidermis (the top layer of the skin) and thus increases hair thinning.
- Infections and diseases it another cause, for example fungal infections such as ringworm.
- Hair loss can be the result of medication, chemotherapy being the most obvious. But arthritic medication, anti depressants, heart medication and high blood pressure medication as well as steroids can all have a huge impact on the hair condition.
- And lastly, blocked hair follicles caused by excessive sebum, sweating or over use of products can also cause hair to thin.
It is often thought that salon treatments can use hair loss but in my opinion this is not true. Salon treatments done incorrectly can use hair breakage, not hair loss.
So what do you do if you are loosing too much hair?
If necessary a trip to your local GP is recommended and have a physical examination done to find out if you have an underlying medical condition or a vitamin or mineral deficiency.
Always shampoo your hair regularly, using a good shampoo. This is especially true if you gym or exercise a lot or if you use hairsprays and other such products. There are numerous shampoos, conditioners and treatments available today that help combat hair thinning and loss. Speak to your hairstylists about a home care range that would be best suited to your hair. Eat healthy and take a good supplement. Vitamin B, iron, calcium and zinc all promote healthy hair. And be sure to get enough sleep, fresh air and exercise.
A healthy body and mind is the first step to a health head of hair.