Understanding causes of hair loss and the solutions.
Understanding causes of hair loss and the solutions. If you are reading this article you are probably feeling very self-conscious and insecure about your hair loss. You may be looking in the mirror every day several times a day at your hair loss areas and wondering what the causes of hair follicles falling out are. It is important to understand the causes of hair loss so that you can find the right solution to restore your hair density. Hair loss is really debilitating and affects how people feel about their looks and self confidence. Read on to find out the causes and solutions. There are many hair restoration options . A hair transplant is not the only option for many.
You may be avoiding to look in the mirror because it draws your attention to your hair loss. Hair thinness or baldness affects people in many different ways and some people are happy to be bald whereas others are affected greatly by this.
Hair and good looks
Healthy long dense hair has historically been linked to good looks and strength. Think of Samson and Delilah, hair was a source of strength. Long hair also has mythical qualities. For example, many fables across the world have long hair a symbol of beauty. From a very young age we are being bombarded with images and stories that link attractiveness and youthfulness to long hair. Nowadays with the advent of hair systems (wigs) many people project the illusion of a thick head of hair.
Social media such as Instagram is covered with images of model like characters with thick, long hair. In fact many of these images project women wearing hair extensions. If you are blessed with naturally thick hair this is fine but if your hair lacks density then these images can make you feel wholly inadequate.
Long thick glossy hair is also linked to youth. Historically long thick hair has been linked to virility and good health and strength. Loss of hair is associated with old-age and poor health.
Causes of hair loss
If you are losing your hair you are probably worried about your health. In fact some systemic diseases cause hair loss. For example, systemic lupus erythematosus disease is an autoimmune disease and can cause scarring alopecia.
Causes of women losing hair
Women can lose hair due to deficiencies in nutrients of various vitamins can also cause hair loss. For example, a lack of vitamin B12, zinc and iron all contribute to losing hair. In women there is a condition called called PCOS or polycystic ovarian syndrome. Many women with this syndrome suffer from baldness or loss of density .
Medical conditions affecting hair loss
There are some other conditions which cause the loss of hair which are poorly understood at the moment. For example, frontal fibrosing alopecia, lichen planopilaris etc. These conditions mostly affect women and diagnosed by carrying out a biopsy of the scalp tissue. This condition causes hair loss on the scalp.
How to find out the causes of your hair loss
All these causes and conditions can be checked and verified via your GP who can organise for you to have some blood tests. Medication such as certain drugs are also known to cause or contribute to hair loss in both men and women. For example anticoagulants , medication and blood thinning medication, anti-histamines, anabolic steroid,s anti-acid medication called, anti thyroid drugs, amphetamine drugs like Ibuprofen can cause hair to be lost. If you are taking these medications this might be the reason you are suffering from hair loss.
A Common cause of men losing hair is male pattern hair loss or otherwise called male androgenetic alopecia. This can be rectified for most people using a prescription only hair loss medication tablets.
You can visit your GP to ask for blood tests and explore your options.
Some hairstyles can cause pulling of the hair which is known as traction alopecia. A lot of African hair types suffer from large patches on the scalp where there has been permanent erosion of hair caused by this practice. Hair straighteners, relaxants and heating stylers all damage hair and cause significant hair to be lost.
Any significant stressful events such as bereavement can cause a lot of hair to be shed. A lot of stress in work related jobs can also cause hair to fall out. It is important to try to relax and to take time out.
The hair that is lost due to stress such as financial difficulties, divorce or work related stress is usually temporary and is called telogen effluvium.
Treatments that are solutions to stop hair loss
The answer to rectifying the hair loss is complicated as no single answer is correct. More often than not hair loss is progressive therefore it has to be treated like a ongoing project. Maintenance is the most important factor in the treatment of hair which is falling out more than the normal 100 hairs a day. Consequently it is important to try to retain the existing hair and hair cannot be restored which has been lost permanently.
1. There is another treatment which is widely known as laser therapy or LLLT , the effectiveness of that is yet to be proved beyond doubt.
Hair loss medication tablets
2. Hair can be restored with medication such as topical minoxidil solutions ( platelet rich plasma.) Any hair restoration must go hand-in-hand with retention of existing hair. DHT blockers or hair loss medication tablets also prevent hair falling out. They are available upon prescription from the doctor. Read more about our non-surgical hair loss treatments.
3. A hair transplant can be a effective treatment option to restore hair in balding areas where hair follicles are falling out. This can accompany the additional therapies as mentioned above. The key to a successful hair transplant apart from other factors and variables is a good donor area at the back of your head.Hair restoration can be carried out by way of surgery or medication. This is a huge project in researching to find the right hair transplant clinic in order to find the best hair transplant surgeon. Your body hair can also supplement the restorative process by the surgeon extracting hair from the chest and beard under the chin. This is a specialist technique only known by a select number of hair transplant surgeons if you have a very poor donor area.
4. There are other modalities of treatment that can be applied to create to create illusion of hair such as micro scalp pigmentation called SMP. This is a last option when a hair transplant is no longer a viable solution due to extensive hair loss. SMP is essentially the filling of tiny dots of tattoo marks in the form of tiny dots in the area of hair loss in between the hair loss areas to create an impression of density in the area of hair loss areas. This is a procedure that will need to be topped up every year .
5. If you are a woman vitamin and iron supplements may restore the deficiency that is causing your hair loss. This will only stop hair loss it will not restore permanently lost hair. In that case you will need to consider other options such as hair transplant surgery. Bear in mind, that the deficiencies of vitamins for an under-active thyroid that caused the hair loss in the first place has to be permanently monitored. This has to be treated in order to stop resumption of hair loss or hair falling out again. You can find out more about hair supplements and how they help grow healthy hair here.
6. The best way to style hair is to keep it as natural as possible. French women don’t like heated stylers such as hair dryers and leave their hair to dry naturally.
7. Head massages can help to relax a stressful body and improve circulation. They are good for improving hair loss.
There are two types of hair transplant surgery techniques, FUE hair transplant surgery and FUT hair transplant surgery . You can find out more about each of these techniques and whether you are suitable by reading our treatments pages here.
Thank you for reading this article. Find out more about our male and female hair loss treatments
The Clinic Manager