Hair loss is a common and utterly regular occurrence that happens to all people.
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We shed hair at approximately 50-100 strands per day. However, anything over this is considered beyond average hair loss. Factors that may influence hair loss include heredity, illness, and ageing.
Hair loss can either be permanent or temporary. Most cases lean on the temporary side, with flare-ups triggered by illness, weight changes, excessive stress, and iron deficiency.
There are several possible root causes of hair loss. These causes create various forms of hair loss which look different from each other:
Gradual thinning of hair on the top of the head. This is the most common hair loss form, affecting both males and females. Males experience a receding hairline starting from the forehead and going backwards. Females experience an increased outward broadening that starts from their hair partings.
Patchy and circular bald spots. These spots are typically the size of a coin and can affect the scalp. Some people even experience bald spots on their beards and eyebrow hairs. Pain and itchiness may often accompany the spots.
Sudden hair loosening. This happens when hair suddenly comes out in handfuls during washing and combing. You may also notice it while finger-combing your hair. Loosening hairs can lead to gradual hair thinning.
Full-body hair loss. This is a hair loss type with hair loss from the entire body, not just from the head. This condition can result from a medication course, such as chemotherapy or certain illnesses. Hair regrows once the illness completely heals or the medications are discontinued.
Losing hair can become mentally devastating both to females and males alike. You may ask your doctor for a referral to a counsellor or a support group with people experiencing the same hair loss problems as you.
You can help avoid and stop hair loss by adhering to the following strategies:
You may consider limiting or stopping the use of the following hair products to ease your hair fall:
If you need to style hair using dryers or heated combs, thoroughly dry hair before applying heat. Also, use the lowest heat settings in styling your hair.
UK hair loss clinics report skyrocketing statistics about hair loss in the country. 1/3 of men over 25 already struggle with hair loss problems. Around 40% of women face the same dilemma. And since hair loss increases as one ages, the numbers rise to a prevalence rate of 70% of men aged 70 and above. And 39% of men lose hair altogether.
British surveys also revealed that men are more afraid of losing their hair than they fear losing their job. This reflects the seriousness of hair loss and the emotional blow that a person struggling with it has to experience.
Here are the three common types of hair loss prevalent in the UK today:
A person needs to undergo physical examinations conducted by a physician and dermatologist. They can determine the root cause of hair loss through this. Lifestyle changes and medications may then be prescribed once the physicians point out your hair loss's primary cause.
Hair loss causes may take a bit of time to be determined thoroughly. For instance, if the physician suspects an autoimmune disorder behind the hair loss, he may send the patient for a biopsy – obtaining a small amount of skin from the patient and testing it in a lab to look for possible causation of hair loss. A biopsy is one of the many possible alternative diagnostic methods your doctor may use if he suspects a medical condition underlying your hair loss problem.
Over-the-counter medications such as topical creams and gels are usually used to manage hair loss. These remedies are directly rubbed into the scalp to promote hair growth and stop excessive shedding. Prescription oral medications may also be an option if your hair loss worsens. However, these oral medications may have unpleasant side effects that may not feel worth tolerating to bring back lost hair.
Severe forms of hair loss may require hair transplant surgery. This procedure involves small plugs of skin with a few hair strands moving to bald parts of the scalp. The surgery can be costly and runs the risk of having patchy hair growth and scarring in the future.
Another treatment option for severe hair loss is micro-pigmentation. It is a cosmetic technique involving a tattoo closely resembling a shaved or clipped hairstyle. The tattoo is then carefully applied to the balding head.
Proper treatment may reverse or completely resolve hair loss. However, inherited hair loss may be more challenging to treat, and complete success in reversing the condition may not be fully achieved.
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