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Are there different types of hair loss?

Isn’t hair loss the process of losing hair?… Well, yes but not all hair loss conditions are created equal. There are a multitude of reasons men and women lose their hair. Today we will introduce the most common forms and potentially educate those to distinguish if they suffer from a particular type of hair loss.

It is completely normal to lose up to 100 hairs a day. The cycle of hair growth can be between 2 and 6 years. Fresh hairs grow over approximately 12 weeks. It’s when an individual experiences a hair loss condition, that appearances become noticeable there’s more loss than regeneration. Let’s explore 3 most common types of hair loss.

ANDROGENIC ALOPECIA: Also known as male pattern baldness/ Male/Female pattern thinning. This is a very common form of hairloss producing a characteristic M shape initially, expanding to a U shape once more advanced along the temples, Hairline (Forelock) expanding through to the crown (Vertex). Some receding can start as early as late teens with hair loss risk increasing as individuals age. Women rarely become completely bald but exhibit an overall thinning. There have been several medical conditions associated with androgenic Alopecia including but not restricted to: Hypertension, Diabetes, coronary heart disease and Prostate issues. In women, this form of hair loss can be an associated symptom of Polycystic Ovary syndrome (PCOS).

Basically, excess male hormones and a genetic sensitivity can be held responsible for Androgenic Alopecia. In particular, an androgen caled DHT (Dihydrotestosterone). There are a number of topical and oral DHT blockers and inhibitors that can be used to combat shrinking hair follicles, returning the growth cycle of hair to its former glory. Regular use of these can play an important role in slowing down the excess hair fall process.

ALOPECIA AREATA: (AA) This hair loss condition causes your hair to fall out in patches. Characteristically described as coin sized patches of hair loss on scalp and body,sometimes affecting eyebrows, eyelashes and beards.  it does have the ability to expand- labelling it as Alopecia Totalis or Alopecia Universalis. This type of hair loss is considered an Autoimmune condition. The body’s immune system mistakes healthy hair follicles for a foreign body or substance. Symptoms can alleviate and reoccur at any time. This hair loss condition does not discriminate against race, gender or age though it is thought the typical onset of Alopecia Areata can be between 25 and 36 years of age. Though no cure at present, treatments are available.

Here are the most readily forms or treatments:

  • Corticosteroid creams and ointments. Topically placed, they work by decreasing the inflammation of the follicle.
  • Steroid injections placed directly into the bald patches, repeated every 1 to 2 months. (This does not prevent new hair loss patches from forming).
  • Oral immunosuppressants- This can sometimes be an option, though this can come with side effects if used for an extended period of time.
  • Natural approach- Such as vitamins, minerals and clean eating can be beneficial, though results, like anything, can vary from person to person.

TELOGEN EFFLUVIUM: or TE as it’s referred to iS a temporary yet very common form of hairloss whereby a bout of acute stress, shock or trauma pushes more hair follicles into a resting phase otherwise known as telogen. This condition can target 1 part of the scalp or body or produce overall thinning of the entire scalp. Telogen effluvium can lead to the physical  shedding of hair 3 to 4 months after the triggering factors have occured. These can include situations + events such as a car accident, childbirth, general anesthetic or body trauma + physiological loss like a departed loved one. There is no cure for TE. The condition usually rectifies itself in time  with normal hair growth returning many months after the fact. Rarely will the TE cause a receding hairline. The best course of action when dealing with TE is determining the contributing factor as to how this came to pass, managing stress levels, hormones, clean eating + acknowledgement that this is the bodys by-product to a traumatic event. Take solace in the fact that if this is true Telogen Effluvium, Hair follicles will restore themselves in time and this is a patience game.

If you are suffering a form of hair loss and would like to find out more about a type of particular loss you are experiencing, Medici Capelli are here to inform you and offer treatment options that can regain your self confidence and get your hunger for life back.

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