Stress & Hair Loss: Are they Related?
May 25, 2015
From childhood to old age, we lose hair every day. On average everybody loses up to 100 hairs daily. Though it sounds to be a huge figure, trust me it is not at all – considering the millions of active hair follicles on your scalp. According to the researchers, shedding hair is just a part of the normal hair growth cycle, which consists of three phases – anagen (the growth phase), catagen (the shedding phase), and the Telogen (the dormant or resting phase).
Each hair follicle has to undergo these three phases, and a full cycle can take several years to complete – courtesy a huge number of hairs present on your scalp. Now, this speaks clearly why losing even a hundred hairs daily is considered normal. However, there come stages in life when you start shedding hair more than normal. This signals a hair loss which can be temporary as well as permanent.
While permanent hair loss is mostly genetic and is caused by high levels of a male sex hormone, Dihydrotestosterone, there are a number of causes of temporary hair loss, from skin infection to stress and anxiety to hormonal imbalance. Listed below are some causes of temporary hair loss. Know what is causing you to lose hair and fix it as soon as possible to prevent your hair from shedding, or it may turn out to be permanent.
A skin infection is the most common cause of temporary hair loss. However, it has some very clear symptoms, a dry, itchy scalp being at the top. If you find your scalp abnormally dry and flaky or it is sore and itchy, you are most likely suffering from a skin infection. Consult a dermatologist or hair care specialist to find out the nature and cause of infection. A skin infection can cause you to lose hair from any part of the body.
There are several medical conditions as well that trigger hair loss in the patient. Hypothyroidism is often blamed for temporary hair loss. The deficiency of thyroid hormone in the body causes the hair follicles to become miniaturized and they start falling out. By simply addressing the thyroid problem you can return the hair follicles to the normal growth cycle and they stop falling out. Severe anemia – lack of iron, an essential nutrient for hair growth – can also trigger hair loss. Generally, women with heavy menstruation or those who do not take an adequate supply of iron during pregnancy suffer from anemic hair loss. It can also be easily reversed through proper iron supplementation.
There are certain treatments as well that induce hair loss in the patient undergoing that particular treatment. One most famous treatment that causes the patients to shed hair from all over the body is chemotherapy – the cancer treatment. There are various other treatments as well that use chemicals which are hair follicle toxins. However, your physician will share with you if there are any such side effects before starting the treatment.
Women undergo a lot of hormonal changes during pregnancy, childbirth, and even nursing period. Higher estrogen levels during pregnancy cause more than normal hair follicles to undergo the catagen phase – shedding phase – and it continues for a couple of months after pregnancy as well. As result mothers start shedding more hair after giving birth to a baby. However, the best thing about hair loss associated with pregnancy is that it is always temporary and stops at its own as soon as the estrogen levels come back to normal. Nevertheless, the persistence of hair loss for several months following pregnancy indicates a hormonal imbalance that must be investigated.
Extreme physical or emotional stress can also induce temporary hair loss. Hair shedding caused by emotional stress or prolonged high fever is medically termed as telogen effluvium, and usually occurs several weeks and sometimes months after the traumatic event or ailment. Though the exact cause of this type of hair loss is yet to be understood, it is believed that stress and anxiety disturb hormones of the person going through severe stress and anxiety, and thus affect the hair follicles just like pregnancy or any other hormonal trigger does – by shifting an abnormally high number of follicles into the catagen phase. High fever, like typhoid, has also been found to induce temporary hair loss in many patients. But since it is also transient hair loss, the follicles remain active and start regrowing hair as soon as the stress is relieved.
Despite being temporary, the cosmetic consequences of hair loss are generally unacceptable for the individuals experiencing it. If you are also battling temporary hair loss, consulting a hair restoration specialist can be helpful. See some good physician in the town immediately and he will recommend temporary treatments, like oral and topical medications or medications to address the underlying cause.
For all those living in Dubai, Hair Transplant Dubai Clinic may be the right place to visit for all types of hair related issues. We also offer free online consultations. If you are interested, contact us now by filling the form below and let our experts guide you in the best possible manner.