Hair loss, also known as alopecia, is a common condition that affects both men and women. I personally experienced it every time I give birth or whenever I am in a state of stress which I find bothersome. It can be caused by a variety of factors, including genetics, hormonal changes, medical conditions, and certain medications. So In this article, let me share with you the things to know about hair loss, its causes, ways to prevent it and how to improve the health of your hair and reduce the risk of hair loss.
The most common cause of hair loss is androgenetic alopecia, also known as male or female pattern baldness. This type of hair loss is caused by a combination of genetics and hormones. Men and women with this condition have a genetic sensitivity to the hormone dihydrotestosterone (DHT), which causes the hair follicles to shrink and eventually stop producing hair. This type of hair loss is typically seen in the form of a receding hairline or thinning of the crown in men, and thinning hair on the top of the head in women.
Another common cause of hair loss is hormonal changes. Changes in hormone levels can occur during pregnancy, menopause, and thyroid conditions. Pregnancy, giving birth and menopause, have hormonal changes wherein estrogen is declining leading to falling out of hair. On the other hand, a problem in your thyroid can also produce symptoms of hair loss.
Medical conditions such as alopecia areata, an autoimmune disorder that causes hair loss in patches, and scalp infections such as ringworm can also cause hair loss. Certain medications, such as blood thinners, birth control pills, and antidepressants, can also lead to hair loss as a side effect.
To prevent hair loss, it is important to maintain a healthy diet that is rich in iron, vitamin C, and other essential nutrients. Iron deficiency is a common cause of hair loss, so it is important to include iron-rich foods such as leafy greens, red meat, and eggs in your diet. Vitamin C is also important for hair health as it helps the body absorb iron. Vitamin B complex particularly Biotin can also support hair growth. It works by stimulating keratin production in hair and can increase the rate of follicle growth.
Another way to prevent hair loss is to avoid excessive styling and heat treatments. Heat treatments, such as blow drying and flat ironing, can damage the hair and lead to breakage. It is also important to avoid tight hairstyles, such as ponytails and braids, which can put tension on the hair and lead to hair loss.
It is also important to take care of your scalp by keeping it clean and moisturized. Dandruff and dry, itchy scalp can lead to hair loss, so it is important to use a gentle shampoo and conditioner and to avoid harsh chemicals and styling products.
If you are experiencing hair loss, it is important to consult a dermatologist or primary care physician to determine the cause. They will be able to recommend the appropriate treatment, which may include medications, topical treatments, or hair restoration surgery.
In conclusion, hair loss can be caused by a variety of factors, including genetics, hormonal changes, medical conditions, and certain medications. To prevent hair loss, it is important to maintain a healthy diet, avoid excessive styling and heat treatments, take care of your scalp, and consult a dermatologist or trichologist if you are experiencing hair loss. With the right approach, you can improve the health of your hair and reduce the risk of hair loss. If you are experiencing hair loss, there are plenty of solutions to help you regrow your hair.
About The Author
Dr. Verns is a highly-skilled and compassionate physician who obtained her medical degree from Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila College of Medicine in 2014, and passed the Physician Licensure Exam in August of 2015. She is a certified Family Physician given by the Philippine Association of Family Physicians, and received her Diplomate in Family Medicine in 2022 and landed as top 6 in overall rankings in the Philippines. She is also a registered nurse both in the Philippines and the United States, having passed the US Nursing Licensure Exam in 2007.
Dr. Verns is a strong advocate of preventive care and believes that it makes a huge difference in the outcome of disease development. In the future, she is looking to further her education and training to become a diabetologist or lifestyle medicine fellow.