Hair Shedding 101: Causes and Prevention
Hair fall is a typical activity of your hair. You lose hundreds of strands every day whenever you wash, comb, tie, or stroke your hair. Yes, sweeping wads of hair strands on the floor can be annoying most of the time. Don't worry about losing your feathery strands because it is a part of your hair's growth cycle. Yet, having too many hairballs all over the place may also be a red alert. It can be an indication of a particular hair loss problem known as hair shedding.
Hair shedding has always been a hair growth concern for both men and women. It does not only influence the physical appearance, but it can also lower one's self-confidence.
So how can you win the battle against hair fiasco? Delve more about hair shedding, its underlying causes, and preventive measures.
Hair Shedding and Hair Growth Cycle
Hair shedding is said to be a regular hair growth activity. Thus, it is involved in your hair growth cycle consisting of three phases: anagen, catagen, and telogen.
90% of your hair strands are in the anagen or growth phase. In this stage, your hair elongates at least 1 cm per month. Anagen, in the absence of internal and external damages, is the most extended phase of the cycle, which can last for three to six years. The hair follicles residing underneath your dermal skin are essential regulators of hair growth. With enough supply of oxygen and nutrients, these follicles can thrive and extend hair growth for a long time.
After a certain period, your hardworking follicles also need a break, thereby shifting into the catagen or transitional phase. Furthermore, melanin production declines during this stage. After that, follicles begin to miniaturize, thereby disconnecting any means of nourishment.
Once your follicles have cut off any means of thriving, they enter the telogen or shedding phase. While these follicles remain dormant for many months, epidermal cells still grow around the follicle lining. After a certain resting period, follicles begin emerging into the anagen phase once again, thereby weakening the inactive shafts until they break and shed.
Usually, your hair sheds in-between the telogen and anagen phases. However, some factors can hasten and prolong hair loss in any of these phases. Check out the common causes of hair fall.
The Alphabet of Hair Fall: 10 Causes of Hair Shedding
1. Alopecia Areata
Your immune system, the primary defense line against illnesses, must always be well-functioning. However, certain conditions allow your immune system to attack healthy cells, tissues, and organs. For instance, alopecia areata is a type of autoimmune disorder that damages and destroys your hair follicles. In turn, your hair growth cycle gets disrupted, leading to hair loss. You may also begin seeing bald spots on your scalp as another result of alopecia areata.
2. Anagen Effluvium
If you think that hair loss can only happen after the telogen phase, then you're wrong. When your hair during the anagen or growth phase is disrupted, it can cause premature hair loss. Anagen effluvium is a type of alopecia that occurs when toxins or inflammations damage your follicles.
Radiation therapies, such as chemotherapy, can also trigger this unwanted hair loss. Radiation can impede epithelial cell division on the hair bulb during the anagen phase. Adverse effects on your hair's mitotic activities can weaken your growing follicles, resulting in strand breakage and untimely hair shedding.
3. Blocked blood vessels and arteries
Your follicles require enough oxygen for survival. If your blood vessels and artery walls are congested, your blood's red blood cells may not reach and deliver oxygen for your follicles, causing their miniaturization. As a result, your follicles die, and your strands fall out.
4. Cardiovascular diseases
Experiencing a heart problem puts your health at risk, including your hair's lifespan. If your heart cannot pump enough blood to the different body parts, blood flow will be hampered. Thus, your hair follicle may not be able to receive a healthy dose of oxygen and other hair growth nutrients from your blood, leading to their shrinkage and death.
5. DHT invasion
Androgens help promote hair growth. However, an increase of testosterone levels in the body can also trigger the overproduction of dihydrotestosterone. DHT is the potent form of testosterone that can bind and shrink your hair follicles. Strand breakage and hair shedding are the repercussions of this androgen invasion.
If a person has diabetes, his body is incapable of producing insulin, a hormone that promotes glucose absorption on your cells. Your blood sugar levels increase without insulin, blocking your blood vessels, thereby restricting proper blood flow. When this surge of glucose happens, your follicles may be deprived of receiving oxygen for hair growth.
7. Extreme brushing of hair
Brushing your locks with a high-quality comb allows the even distribution of oils from roots to tips, making your hair well-moisturized. As a result, your hair strands become soft, shiny, and healthy. However, the tugging sensation from overbrushing can damage and shrink your follicles, thereby leading to extreme hair fall.
8. Free radical damage
When an oxygen molecule disperses into atoms with incomplete electrons, free radicals are formed. Therefore, these unpaired radicals seek their missing electrons from other atoms by attacking your healthy cells. The more free radicals that accumulate in your body, the more cells are prone to damage. Thus, free radicals are especially dangerous for your mane, for they can destroy your hair follicles. As a result, fewer follicles thrive, and more of your hair strands shed.
Avoid free radical damage by avoiding stress, smoking, and alcohol. If you are stressed, stress-induced chemicals can create free radicals. On the other hand, smoking and drinking alcohol can hasten the free radical production. By avoiding these unhealthy habits, you can protect your tresses from shedding.
9. Giving birth
Most pregnant women enjoy their glorious days of having healthy hair because of a surge in estrogen production. However, estrogen levels decrease after giving birth. As a result, first-time moms may experience telogen effluvium. This hair loss condition involves the excessive shedding of your hair since the follicles prematurely enter the resting phase and shed in no time. But rest assured that postpartum hair loss is temporary as long as there is an early intervention for hair shedding.
10. High-stress levels
Avoiding stress may seem impossible, but you must learn managing your stress levels to prevent hair shedding. Being stressed can push your glands to produce more fight-or-flight hormones known as cortisol. Too much cortisol in the body can force your healthy follicles in the anagen phase to shift into the catagen and telogen phases, thereby coercing your strands to shed.
Precautionary Measures against Hair Shedding
Keep calm, ladies, and gents. No matter how complicated hair shedding may be, it is still reversible and preventable. Discover some practical ways to prevent your hair from losing its battle.
1. Rely on your nutritious diet.
Hair loss conditions can be triggered due to poor nutrition. Therefore, your hair needs a healthy supply of vitamins, proteins, and minerals to grow and thrive for many years. Ensure that your everyday meals consist of foods rich in vitamins A, B, C, D, E, and K. Your body also needs enough protein nourishment for your hair's keratinization. Thus, boost the hair growth process with the help of eggs, chicken, fish, beef, milk, and yogurt.
2. Manage your stress levels.
No matter how nerve-racking the situation, always keep your composure. An increase in stress levels may hamper your follicle growth, thereby causing hair to fall.
One way to keep away from stress is to sleep for six to eight hours every day. An adequate sleeping time allows your cells, tissues, and organs to regenerate. Therefore, your body can better fight against bacteria, toxins, and free radicals.
You can also relieve your stress by indulging in hair and body spa treatments. Add some soothing essential oils on your homemade hair mask concoction to receive hair growth nutrients.
3. Choose the best anti-hair loss products.
Win the battle against hair loss by using natural anti-hair loss products, such as shampoos and conditioners. These products contain ingredients with DHT blockers and super vitamins that can impede hair shedding's adverse effects. Don't forget to use hair conditioners to protect your locks from dehydration and breakage.
Shed No More Tears.
Wipe those tears away, for you can triumph against hair shedding. This hair loss problem can be treated and prevented with proper measures. Therefore, always keep yourself physically, mentally, and emotionally healthy to avoid losing your hair. Avoid doing anything harmful for your hair, such as drinking alcohol, smoking cigarettes, and applying harsh chemicals. Do not forget to use natural and effective hair growth products to keep your locks thick, long, and strong.
Still worried about hair loss problems? Shoo your concerns away by checking out the secrets to healthier, fuller, and shinier hair. Try these 15 ways to stop hair loss with the help of the best hair growth products for thinning hair conditions. Use Thicktails Hair Growth products with DHT-blocking ingredients and potent hair vitamins for superior hair quality.