Why are you losing hair? Common causes of hair loss
Losing hair to a certain extent is normal, most of the people usually shed 50 to 100 hairs a day. This type of hair loss generally does not cause thinning of hair because as one hair sheds, at the same time new hair is growing on your scalp. But sudden losing hair is something that you should take seriously, because it may be a sign that the cycle of hair growth and shedding is disrupted, or that the hair follicle is destroyed and replaced with scar tissue.
There are various factors that can cause losing hair. Sometimes the type of balding can be an indicator for the reason of hair loss, but there are many possibilities that should be taken in consideration before you get a concrete diagnosis.
Alopecia ( losing hair )
The most common cause is alopecia – a chronic inflammatory dermatological disorder that leads to losing hair by affecting the growth phase of hair follicles. In this case men are losing hair primarily on the scalp, but sometimes the problem may occur on the body as well. The extent of hair loss differs depending on the form of alopecia that you have.
The most common form is male pattern alopecia, medically called Androgenetic Alopecia (AGA), which is a genetically predisposed condition mediated by an increased sensitivity to testosterone in the follicle. It usually starts manifesting with a receding hairline, and continues with hair loss at the top of the head. If the condition progresses, it causes the balding areas to merge, leaving only a ring of hair around the scalp.
There are also more severe types of alopecia that cause different consequences. Alopecia Areata causes losing hair in patches from the head, which may vary from 1 centimeter in diameter, to relatively large areas. Alopecia Totalis causes losing hair on the entire head, including eyelashes and eyebrows. Alopecia Universalis causes losing all hair on both the head and body.
It is believed that severe types of alopecia occur as an autoimmune disorder which arises from a combination of genetic and environmental influences and causes immune cells to attack hair follicles in the growth phase.
Basically, the body’s immune system attacks its own hair. It usually happens suddenly and the disease course is unpredictable. There may be spontaneous remission, but repeated episodes can also arise.
If you are losing hair, talk to a licensed professional who can determine the cause and treatment options.
Other medical conditions
Sometimes sudden loss of hair can be caused by an underlying medical condition.
There are estimated 30 diseases that can cause hair loss, such as anemia, diabetes, and lupus. You need to talk to a doctor who can find ways to treat the disease and reverse the process of losing hair.
Chemotherapy, as part of cancer treatment, may also cause substantial hair loss. It is usually one of the most traumatic side effects.
However, as soon as the therapy is stopped, the hair tends to grow back, but it may not be of the same color or texture as before. Radiation therapy and major surgery can also cause temporary hair loss.
Additionally, a poor diet without enough protein, vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients, as well as weight loss, can result in losing hair.
Eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia have also caused hair loss troubles.
In some cases, continuous or major psychological stress, such as from divorce or death of a loved one, can result in temporary hair loss.
How to stop losing hair?
The first important step is to consult a professional. A lot of men don’t realize that genetic hair loss is treatable and baldness is not an inevitable outcome. But the truth is that with the right professional advice and clinically-proven options suitable for their specific situation, it is possible to prevent hair loss and promote hair growth.
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