Author: Anthony Delar
Hair loss is a difficult matter to face for both men and women. It is the thinning of hair on the scalp. The medical term for hair loss is alopecia. Alopecia can be either temporary or permanent. Heredity and hormonal imbalance can cause gradual hair loss that is referred to as androgenetic alopecia.
Define Hair Loss
Hair is made up of a keratin, a protein that is produced in the hair follicles. When new cells are produced the old cells are pushed out through the surface of the skin. This cycle of new hair growth and losing old hair is termed as natural hair loss. When hormonal changes and heredity are the cause for hair loss then it is termed as androgenetic alopecia. Patches of baldness that normally grow back are termed as alopecia areata. Rapid shedding of hair after childbirth, fever, or sudden weight loss is termed as telogen effluvium and thinning of hair from tight braids or ponytails is normally referred to as traction alopecia. Hair loss is generally age-related and occurs gradually in both males and females, but is more pronounced in males.
The average adult head has about 100,000 hairs at any given time and loses up to 100 of them a day. So a few stray hair here and there cannot necessarily be termed as a problem.
Each hair usually grows in repeated cycles that is growth, rest, falling out and re-growth. Usually this cycle repeats itself yearly and as a result 90% of the scalp hair is growing at any given time; this phase lasts between two and six years. 10% of scalp hair is in the resting phase, lasting between two and three months. At the tail end of the resting phase, the hair goes through the shedding phase. When a hair is shed, it is replaced by a new hair.
Symptoms of Hair Loss
Male-pattern baldness is hereditary and therefore runs in families. It usually sets in around the late twenties or thirties. Following a set pattern, the first stage is usually a receding hairline, followed by thinning of the hair on the crown and temples. It can even progress to complete baldness, although it is rare. The symptoms of hair loss in men include:
- Thinning hair on the scalp
- A receding hairline
- A horseshoe-shaped hair loss pattern leaving the crown exposed
With age, women generally notice thinning of hair, but they tend to lose hair mostly from the top of the head. This becomes more noticeable after menopause. It is also called androgenetic alopecia, or female-pattern hair loss. Baldness in females also runs in families. In women it includes:
- Thinning of hair in general
- Thinning of hair at the crown
In addition other symptoms may be:
- Sudden loss of patches of hair in which the immune system attacks the hair follicles and can affect all body hair alopecia areata
- Complete loss of all hair on the body alopecia universalis
- Patches of broken hair or bald patches because of the hair being pulled out trichotillomania.
- Excessive shedding of hair after various illnesses or drug treatments, rapid weight loss, anemia, stress or pregnancy telogen effluvium
- Inherited hair loss androgenetic alopecia
- Hair loss because of fungal infection tinea capitis
Hair being an important part of our appearance, its loss can result in loss of self-esteem and a feeling of unattractiveness, especially in women and teens.
Causes of Hair Loss
Although hair loss causes vary from person to person, there are various causes that result in scalp hair loss. However, most hair loss is not associated with systemic or internal disease or poor diet. Apart from genetics, hormonal changes as well as aging in men, women mostly lose hair due to poor circulation, hormonal changes after menopause, childbirth and poor diet.
Other causes of hair loss include stress, diabetes, certain drugs, chemicals and hair dyes and vitamin deficiencies.
In addition, disease like thyroid can also result in hair loss. Many medications also list hair loss as one of their side effects. Moreover, cancer treatments like chemotherapy and immune suppression medications can result is loss of hair. Similarly, fungal infections may also result in hair loss.
Normally, each scalp hair has a life of around three years when in the growing (anagen) phase. Then the hair enters the resting (telogen) phase. Normally, about 10% of scalp hairs are in the telogen phase. In this three-month period, the hair root shrivels up into a small white club a then falls out. Therefore, it is considered to be normal to lose about 100 hairs every day and more on days when the hair is shampooed. Shampooing loosens the hair root of the hairs that are ready to fall out. These hairs are then replaced.
Our circumstances or certain life altering evens may also shock our system into altering our hair growth rhythm. This may put 30-40% of our hairs in the telogen phase. This normally happens after:
- High fever
- Sudden weight loss (crash dieting)
- Emotional trauma
Hair loss may or may not follow these events, depending on individual threshold. Strangely enough, the more dramatic the hair loss, the better is the prognosis. This is so because once the body gets back into shape almost all the hair will come back.
Other probable causes of hair loss are follicular deterioration, zinc or iron deficiency and use of steroids.About the Author:
MHRA reviewed online clinic HealthExpress in UK for male pattern baldness. Get free hair loss consultation online and benefit of propecia next day delivery.
Article Source: http://www.articlesbase.com/hair-loss-articles/whatever-the-cause-and-symptom-hair-loss-is-a-source-of-dejection-829342.html