What Causes Hair Loss?
Hair loss is a topic of concern for many individuals. People of all ages, from different ethnic backgrounds can suffer from hair loss. In addition to being a cosmetic problem, hair loss can also affect other aspects of people’s lives because of the symbolic meaning it has. Hair represents youth, power, health, and fertility. With that being said, let’s look at what causes hair loss and the different types of hair loss.
Causes of Hair Loss
Hereditary – One of the most common causes of hair loss is family history. If your family has a history of hair loss, it is generally passed down for the next generation. Male-pattern and female-pattern baldness are hereditary conditions that generally happen with age and are predictable. They can be identified from receding hairlines and thinning hair.
Stress – When the body is under a lot of stress or has just gone through a very stressful situation, hair loss may be a side effect. Whether it’s emotional or physical shock, you may notice hair thinning even months after the incident. Generally, this type of hair loss is temporary.
Medical Conditions – There are many medical conditions that cause hair loss, including alopecia areata, trichotillomania, and infections such as ringworm. In addition, hormonal changes can cause hair loss as well. These changes may be triggered by events such as pregnancy, childbirth, menopause, and thyroid problems.
Types of Hair Loss
Alopecia Areata – There are two types of alopecia – alopecia totalis and alopecia univeralis. Alopecia totalis affects the hair on someone’s head while alopecia universlis can affect hair on any part of the body. Alopecia affects both men and women of any age, regardless of hair color. It is caused by an autoimmune process and results in patches of hair falling out. This type of hair loss is different from balding as there are distinct areas where all hair falls out rather than general thinning or balding in spots.
Telogen Effluvium – Telogen effluvium is described as shedding large amounts of hair in a short period of time. Telogen effluvium results in losing handfuls of hair during the resting phase. About 85% of hair follicles are actively growing while 15% are resting. People suffering from the condition complain of suddenly losing handfuls of hair. This condition is most commonly caused by an autoimmune disorder but can also be triggered from medications, illness, stress, thyroid disease, and surgery. Generally, telogen effluvium is temporary hair loss triggered by a shock to the system.
Anagen Effluvium – Similar to telogen effluvium, this type of hair loss occurs rapidly but affects hair in the growth stage rather than the resting stage. One of the causes of anagen effluvium is cancer treatment such as chemotherapy. Shedding from anagen effluvium can affect areas on the body other than the scalp, such as the eyebrows. Sometimes the stem cells may not be affected and the hair will grow back after treatment. Sometimes this condition leads to baldness.
There are many different answers to the question “What Causes Hair Loss?” and these answers are only a few of the many possibilities out there. If you are concerned about your hair loss, you should seek medical help from your doctor. You can also look into hair loss treatments, such as the hair follicle rejuvenation procedure. To schedule a free consultation, book your appointment here.