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Hair Loss – Symptoms, Causes and Prevention

Hair Loss – Symptoms, Causes and Prevention

Loss of hair also known as Alopecia is a very common problem. There are different factors that affect the bald head. The symptoms differ from case to case depending on the cause of hair fall. However, there are some prevention techniques to stop or at least delay this.

This is a natural process of our body like aging which also is one of the causes. But sometimes it occurs due to unnatural causes like climate change, medication, illness, and disease, etc.

Baldness follows the loss of hair, when excessive hair fall occurs people go bald and it has no connection to gender whatsoever but baldness in males is more common. Due to alopecia also being natural, some people let their bodies do their work and don’t treat or hide their hair fall. However, some people don’t like it, so, they use wigs, different hairstyles, makeup, hats, or scarves to cover it up. And some people even get treatment to prevent further loss of hair or to restore hair.

In this article, we will see what causes hair fall, its symptoms and how can we prevent it from happening.

Causes of Hair Fall

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Loss of hair is common and everyone goes through it. An average person loses 50-100 hairs a day. But it’s unnoticeable because new hairs grow at the same time. In the condition of hairlessness, new hairs don’t grow fast enough or at all.

  1. Heredity – Heredity means the genetic heritage passed down to us by our biological parents. The hereditary cause of loss of hair is known as Androgenic Alopecia. Hereditary this occurs gradually with time in predictable patterns – bald spots and receding hairline in men and thinning of hairs along with the crown in women.
  2. Hormonal Changes & Medical Conditions – Hormone changes in the body due to several reasons which mostly affect women, such as, pregnancy, childbirth, menopause, etc. can cause temporary or permanent loss of hair. Apart from hormonal changes, medical conditions, such as Alopecia Areata, an immune system-related illness can cause loss of hair too. It causes patchy bald head, scalp infections like ringworm, and a hair-pulling disorder called Trichotillomania.
  3. Medication & Supplements – This can be caused as a side effect of certain drugs, like those used for the treatment of cancer, arthritis, depression, heart diseases, gout, and high blood pressure, etc. While over-supplementation of nutrients like Vitamin A, Vitamin E, and selenium, etc. also causes loss of hair.
  4. Radiation Therapy & Stress – After taking radiation therapy, your hair may not grow back as healthy, strong and long as it used to be. Stress is another main cause of hair fall. Several people experience thinning of hair several months after a physical, mental or emotional shock. It is temporary though. Good sleep is also very important to relax your body and mind.
  5. Hair Treatments – Hairstyles that pull too much on your hair and/or excessive use of hairstyling equipment can cause loss of hair which is known as Traction Alopecia. Hair treatments such as keratin treatment, hot-oil treatment, moisture treatment, etc. can cause a lot of hair fall and even permanent balding.
  6. Other Factors – All the factors that affect hair and hair fall are –
    • Aging is a natural factor that can cause a considerable amount of bald head.
    • Significant & sudden weight loss.
    • Medical conditions & medications.
    • Poor nutrition.
    • Scalp infections.

Symptoms

The appearance of loss of hair differs depending on its cause.

  1. Thinning of Hair on Top of the Head – This is one of the most common types of loss of hair that occurs with age. As people age, in men, the hairline on the forehead starts to recede. In women, on the other hand, this occurs at the crown, and also the hairline starts receding.
  2. Circular- patchy baldness – In this type of baldness, circular patches of bald spots occur randomly on the scalp. Before you lose your hair due to this, your skin will become itchy and painful.
  3. Sudden Loosening of Hair – A physical, mental or emotional shock can lead to sudden loss of hair. You can lose your hair while washing them, combing, tying or even with gentle tugging. However, this is a temporary loss of hair & will stop once the shock passes.
  4. Full Body Hair fall – Some medical conditions and medical treatments, such as chemotherapy taken for cancer can cause loss of hair all over the body. But it is temporary and the hair usually grows back.

Prevention of Hair Fall

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Most baldness is caused due to aging and heredity which are not preventable but these tips will help you avoid the preventable type of loss of hair-

  • Be gentle with your hair while washing, combing, and detangling especially when wet. Try not to tug at your hair. Use a wide-toothed comb, it can prevent pulling of hair.
  • Avoid harsh treatment to hair such as curling iron, hot-oil treatment, straightener, etc.
  • Avoid pulling your hair and putting them in hairstyles that pull hair or tying them tightly.
  • Take the doctor’s advice if you are losing too much hair.
  • Ask the doctor about medications and supplements that can cause loss of hair.

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