Imagine this – you’ve always had incredibly voluminous hair. But lately, you’ve been finding yourself recovering wisps of locks from the shower drain and even more from your hair brush.
What a depressing and a scary sight!
Hair loss is a common phenomenon in both, men and women. In fact, according to the American Academy of Dermatology, a person tends to lose fifty to hundred strands of hair a day on an average.
If you don’t want to lose your voluptuous waves, it is essential that you know the top reasons for hair loss. Being familiar with them will help you care for your mane effectively.
Here are the six most common reasons for hair loss.
1. Excessive Physical Trauma and Mental Stress
Physical trauma in cases such as a major surgery, post pregnancy, drastic weight loss, or a car accident may affect the bodily functions negatively, which may lead to you shedding large amounts of hair each day, also known as telogen effluvium. This may be the side effect of certain antidepressants, beta-blockers, and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs.
Chances are that the one undergoing this will experience hair loss for a period of six weeks to three months. Mental stress, too, can exacerbate the problem of hair loss if it already exists, and affect the hair-growth cycle drastically.
2. Hereditary Condition
According to the American Academy of Dermatology, genetic hair loss (androgenetic alopecia) is one of the most common reasons of hair loss in the U.S.
The condition of hereditary hair loss tends to develop at the age of 20 or 30 in most cases. However, hair loss in women becomes more apparent after menopause. The normal cycle of hair growth undergoes significant changes under this condition, thereby resulting in shorter and thinner hair. Ultimately, hair growth stops altogether in certain parts of the scalp, which leads to hereditary-patterned baldness.
3. Imbalanced Diet
An imbalanced diet that is mainly devoid of protein can affect the growth of your hair in a humongous manner. Moreover, the deficiency of biotin, iron, protein and zinc can reduce vital amino acid and vitamin absorption needed for hair growth.
Being on an extremely strict calorie-deprived diet can also cause a lot of stress to the body and ultimately result in hair loss, as the hair may not receive the necessary nutrition for growth.
4. Intake of Certain Supplements and Steroids
According to the American Academy of Dermatology, excessive intake of vitamin A supplements or medications such as retinoids and antidepressants can trigger hair loss.
Similarly, intake of anabolic steroids can bring a lot of side-effects, with hair loss being one of them.
5. Vigorous Hair Styling
Excessive hair styling such as cornrows and extremely tight braids can harm your tresses immensely. In fact, they can affect the hair root and may stop hair growth altogether.
6. Prominent Medical Causes
Several medical conditions tend to attack the body’s healthy cells, eventually leading to severe hair loss. Here are a few of the most prominent ones:
A significant amount of population suffers from thyroid diseases, one of which is hypothyroidism. This refers to a medical condition in which the body produces inadequate thyroid hormone, which is responsible for maintaining metabolism, heart rate, and mood.
Insufficient amounts of hormone affects the growth of hair, skin, and nails. This may cause hair to become brittle and break easily.
Lupus, a chronic autoimmune disease, causes the body’s immune system to attack the healthy tissues. This often leads to extreme fatigue, headaches, oral ulcers, painful and swollen joints, fever, swelling in the feet, hands and around the eyes, chest pain, anemia, and hair loss in several cases.
The condition affects about 1.5 million people and tends to strike women during their childbearing years.
A lack of iron-rich foods in the diet may result in anemia, an iron deficiency, wherein there is a deficiency of red blood cells in the body.
Anemia causes extreme fatigue, weakness, and pale skin. It may further lead to headaches, difficulty in concentrating, cold hands and feet, and hair loss.
d. Hormonal Imbalance
About five million women in the U.S. suffer from polycystic ovarian syndrome. The condition may begin as early as age 11 and is caused by hormonal imbalance in which the ovaries produce too many male hormones. PCOS often leads to hair loss on the scalp. However, it may cause hair growth everywhere else on the body.
Hormonal imbalances in the body can be also caused by environmental factors such as air and water pollutants, exposure to chlorine, metals and minerals, thereby leading to hair loss. UV exposure can also age the scalp cells prematurely and damage the hair shaft.
e. An Unhealthy Scalp
An unhealthy scalp has severe downsides. Several skin conditions such as seborrheic dermatitis (dandruff), psoriasis, and fungal infections such as ringworm can affect the health of the scalp and lead to hair loss.
Seeing your comb clogged with hair strands can be awful. However, this doesn’t imply that the situation is out of your hands. Making a few changes in your lifestyle such as eating a healthy diet and avoiding over-styling can work wonders and prevent hair fall. The aforementioned reasons will provide you with a clear idea about the factors that may be responsible for your hair loss. If it becomes severe, it would be best to consult a dermatologist who can shed more light on this subject and suggest the right treatment to maintain gorgeous tresses for life.