There are a number of things you can do to help promote hair growth and prevent hair loss.
One of the most common ailments affecting both men and women is hair loss. But did you know that there are different kinds of hair loss, and each type requires a different approach to treating it?
Hair loss can be a distressing experience for both men and women. It can be difficult to understand the different types of hair loss, and what treatments are available. In this article, we will provide an overview of the different types of hair loss in men and women, and how they can be treated.
Types of Hair Loss
There are five types of hair loss:
Androgenic alopecia: This is the most common type of hair loss, affecting both men and women. It is caused by a combination of genetics and hormones. Treatments include medication and surgery.
Alopecia areata: This is a form of auto-immune disease that causes patchy hair loss on the scalp and body. It can affect anyone at any age, but is most common in people under 30. There is no cure, but treatments can help to improve the condition.
Telogen effluvium: This is a temporary form of hair loss that occurs when the natural cycle of hair growth is disrupted. It can be caused by stress, medications, childbirth, or other health conditions. Most people will recover from telogen effluvium without treatment within 6 months.
Traction alopecia: This type of hair loss is caused by damage to the hair follicles from tight hairstyles or treatments such as braiding or cornrowing. It is more common in women than men, and typically affects people aged 18-45. Treatment involves avoiding the damaging hairstyles or treatments, and sometimes medication may be necessary to prevent further damage.
Trichotillomania: This is a psychological disorder that causes people to pull out their own hair from the scalp, eyebrows, or other areas of the body. It usually starts in childhood or adolescence and can continue into adulthood . Treatment usually involves cognitive behavioral therapy or medications.
– Male Pattern Baldness
Male pattern baldness is characterized by a receding hairline and thinning hair on the crown of the head. In severe cases, men may lose all the hair on the top of their head. Male pattern baldness is caused by a combination of genetic and hormonal factors. It is believed to be inherited from a man’s mother’s side of the family. Testosterone, the male sex hormone, plays a role in causing male pattern baldness. When testosterone is converted into dihydrotestosterone (DHT), it shrinks hair follicles and makes it difficult for new hair to grow. Male pattern baldness is treated with prescription medications such as minoxidil (Rogaine) and finasteride (Propecia). Hair transplants are also an option for some men.
– Female Pattern Baldness
Female pattern baldness, also known as androgenetic alopecia, is the most common type of hair loss in women. It usually occurs gradually with age and resulting in a typical ‘M-shaped’ hairline. Although it can be upsetting, female pattern baldness is not usually a sign of an underlying health condition and is often treated with medication or lifestyle changes.
There are many different causes of hair loss in women, but female pattern baldness is by far the most common. It affects around 6.3 million women in the UK – that’s around one in eight ladies.
The exact cause of female pattern baldness is unknown, but it’s thought to be related to a combination of genetic and hormonal factors. It usually starts to develop in adult life and becomes more common with age.
Female pattern baldness doesn’t have any obvious symptoms other than gradual thinning of the hair on the scalp. The hairloss is often diffused (spread evenly over the head), rather than patchy. In severe cases, you may eventually lose all your hair on the scalp (alopecia totalis) or your entire body (alopecia universalis).
If you’re concerned about your hair loss, it’s important to see your GP for advice. They may refer you to a dermatologist (skin specialist) for further assessment and treatment.
– Alopecia Areata
– Alopecia Areata: This is a condition that causes hair loss in patches. The hair loss can happen on the scalp or anywhere else on the body. It is believed to be caused by an autoimmune reaction, where the body attacks the hair follicles. There is no cure for alopecia areata, but treatments are available to help with the hair loss.
– Traction Alopecia
Traction alopecia is a type of hair loss that’s caused by tight hairstyles that pull on the hair over time. The condition is common in African American women who wear their hair in tight braids or cornrows, but it can also be seen in people with ponytails or other updos. Traction alopecia usually starts out as small patches of baldness that spread gradually. The good news is that traction alopecia is usually reversible, so if you catch it early and change your hairstyle, you can often prevent further hair loss. If the condition progresses to permanent baldness, however, treatment may be necessary.
– Telogen Effluvium
Telogen effluvium is a form of hair loss that typically occurs after a major stressor or trauma. This can be physical, such as childbirth, surgery, or a severe illness. It can also be psychological, such as a death in the family, divorce, or job loss. The condition results in the shedding of large amounts of hair from all over the body, not just the scalp. In most cases, the hair will eventually grow back on its own. However, some people may experience permanent hair loss. Treatment for telogen effluvium typically focuses on managing the underlying stressor or addressing any underlying health conditions.
– Anagen Effluvium
Anagen effluvium is a type of hair loss that can occur after exposure to certain drugs or chemicals, or as a result of an underlying medical condition. The hair loss is usually temporary and the affected hairs will eventually regrow. However, in some cases, the hair loss may be permanent.
What Causes Hair Loss?
Hair loss can have many different causes. It can be the result of a medical condition, such as alopecia areata or telogen effluvium. It can also be the result of a physical trauma, such as a burn or severe infection. Additionally, hair loss can be the result of a cosmetic procedure, such as hair transplantation.
The most common cause of hair loss is androgenetic alopecia, also known as male pattern baldness or female pattern baldness. This type of hair loss is caused by a combination of genetic and hormonal factors. Androgenetic alopecia typically begins with a receding hairline in men or thinning hair at the crown of the head in women. As it progresses, more hair follicles enter the resting phase (telogen phase) and eventually stop producing new hairs altogether.
Other common causes of hair loss include stress, nutritional deficiencies, thyroid problems, polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), and certain medications. Stress can cause temporary hair shedding known as telogen effluvium. Nutritional deficiencies can lead to both temporary and permanent forms of hair loss, depending on the nutrient involved. An underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism) often leads to diffuse thinning of the scalp hair rather than complete baldness or patches of missing hair like with alopecia areata. PCOS is another hormonal disorder that can cause thinning scalp hair or patches of missing scalp hair . Some medications, such as chemotherapy drugs and certain anticoagulants can cause hair loss.
Diet & Lifestyle Changes to Help Promote
There are a number of things you can do to help promote hair growth and prevent hair loss. A healthy diet and lifestyle are important for overall health, but there are some specific things you can do to improve the health of your hair.
Getting enough protein is important for hair health, so make sure to include plenty of lean protein in your diet. Beans, nuts, eggs, and fish are all good sources of protein. You should also get plenty of nutrients from fruits and vegetables. Iron, zinc, and vitamin C are all important for hair health, so eat plenty of foods that are rich in these nutrients.
To get the most benefit from your diet, you should also avoid things that can damage your hair. Smoking damages hair follicles and can lead to premature graying. Alcohol can also dry out your scalp and make your hair more susceptible to breakage. Too much sun exposure can also damage your hair, so be sure to wear a hat or use sunscreen when you’re outside.
In addition to a healthy diet, regular exercise is also important for promoting hair growth. Exercise increases blood flow to the scalp, which helps nourish the follicles and promote growth.