Possible Reasons Why You Are Losing Your Hair

Hair shedding is a common consequence of the normal hair growth cycle. This means that it is normal to shed 50 to 100 hairs every day.

However, losing significant amounts of hair is unusual and may cause distress and worry, prompting you to seek the opinion of an expert.

In addition, there are several causes of hair loss. Your doctor will explore all these causes before settling on diagnosis and recommending treatment. 

Here are some of the hair loss causes that you should know about: 

Heredity (androgenetic alopecia)

Heredity is by far the most common cause of hair loss, also known as pattern baldness or androgenetic alopecia. It is not a disease per se, but a natural presentation contributed to by a combination of hormonal factors, genetic predisposition, and aging.

According to studies, individuals susceptible to this type of hair loss have follicles that have been genetically pre-programmed to be sensitive to male sex hormone dihydrotestosterone (DHT).

DHT leads to the transformation the long growth phase and short rest phase to the long rest phase and short growth phase.

Stress 

Most people with prolonged stressful states tend to suffer from hair loss. This is because stress pushes your hair follicles prematurely into the resting phase. As a result, you don’t produce new hair strands, yet your hair continues to shed.

Dieting

Of all the nutrients in your diet, proteins are among the most important for your hair growth. They are useful in structuring your hair follicles. It is not uncommon to see hair loss in people who eat “crash” or “fad”, sometimes even ketogenic diet.

Vitamin deficiency

When you go to the hospital to see your doctor, the doctor will probably tell you that hair loss could be one of the possible vitamin B3 (Niacin) deficiency symptoms. Niacin deficiency makes your hair fall out in patches.

Another vitamin that is linked to hair loss is vitamin B7 (biotin). A study found out that biotin is an essential component of proteins useful in the hair growth cycle.

Medications 

Hair loss can sometimes occur as a side effect of certain medications. Cholesterol-lowering medications such as atorvastatin, anticoagulants such as warfarin, medicines for blood pressure such as captopril, and psoriasis such as acitretin are among the commonest cause of hair loss.

In addition, the effect of anticancer drugs on hair loss (chemotherapy-induced alopecia) has also been widely documented. 

Postpartum hair loss

Hair loss after delivery is a common complaint among women. It is prevalent about three months after delivery. During pregnancy, the hormonal levels increase hair growth, hence why pregnant women seem to have thicker and fuller hair.

But by three months after delivery, the levels of these hormones start declining, and hair loss may occur due to hormonal imbalance as the body tries to adjust to the change. 

Conclusion

There are several causes of hair loss. The ones mentioned above are by far the most common. It is important to know the exact cause of your hair loss to help you decide on the most appropriate treatment.

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  • Motel, P. J. (1990). Captopril and alopecia: a case report and review of known cutaneous reactions in captopril use. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, 23(1), 124-125.
  • Piérard-Franchimont, C., & Piérard, G. E. (2013). Alterations in hair follicle dynamics in women. BioMed research international2013.
  • Rossi, A., Fortuna, M. C., Caro, G., Pranteda, G., Garelli, V., Pompili, U., & Carlesimo, M. (2017). Chemotherapy‐induced alopecia management: clinical experience and practical advice. Journal of cosmetic dermatology, 16(4), 537-541.
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