Hair loss is distressing and embarrassing. It affects so much of the population, yet many people still wonder how it starts in the first place? In honor of Men's Health Month, let’s take a look at the most common causes of hair loss.
Hair Basics and Growth Cycles:
To understand how hair is lost, let's take a closer look at how it grows.
Hair is made up of the protein keratin, a substance which is produced in the hair follicles and the outer layer of skin. When hair follicles create new cells, the old cells are pushed out through the surface of the skin. This entire process plays out in three phases:
Anagen – active hair growth that lasts between two to six years
Catagen – transitional hair growth that lasts two to three weeks
Telogen – the resting phase which lasts about 2 to 3 months. When this stage finishes, the hair shed is replaced with new hair and the growth cycle begins again.
*On the average adult, about 90% of hair is actually in the process of growing.
In many cases, hair loss is directly related to androgenic alopecia, sometimes known as pattern baldness. Surprisingly this issue affects over half the American population, both men and women.
Androgenic alopecia is an irreversible condition inherited at birth. Though the factors of this condition are unknown, what is clear is its ability to affect both males and females equally. Because of its relationship with the hormone dihydrotestosterone (DHT), hair loss can begin to occur as early as puberty.
Usually, hair grows and then remains in a resting phase. This process can take 2 to 6 years and only starts over when the hair falls out naturally. When your hair is exposed to DHT or other androgens, it spends more time resting than growing. Balding doesn't happen immediately and sometimes takes years for the thinning hairs to stop growing altogether.
What you eat can actually affect how your hair grows. Overloading the body with saturated fats and neglecting vital nutrients can cause thinning hair, especially when you’re low in iron. When you lack proper nutrition, your body instantly goes into survival mode and begins supplying oxygen to your major organs, leaving your hair follicles out altogether.
Stress also plays a huge role in the overall health of your body. Too much stress and the body begins to function incorrectly. Hormone levels are significantly affected by high levels of anxiety, which isn’t good for hair growth. If you are suffering from anxiety or stress related hair loss, the good news is, more often than not, this type of hair loss isn't permanent. Once stress levels balance out, your hair should regrow back to its healthy state.
We understand the loss of hair can cause anxiety and worry, and we are committed to helping our patients feel comfortable with diagnosis and treatment. We use only the latest hair restoration techniques to assure the most natural looking results.
Call 615-635-0892 to book your consultation today. Our expert staff will assess your needs and help develop a plan to give you the best results!