What Causes Hair Loss and
What Can Be Done About It?
A certain amount of
hair loss on a day-to-day basis is normal for both men and
women. Most people normally shed a small amount of
hair daily, typically between 50 and 100 hairs a day.
This is part of the normal hair growth process.
But with about 100,000
hairs in the average person's scalp, normal daily shedding
does not contribute to any kind of noticeable thinning
associated with the appearance of baldness in the scalp.
Generally, as we grow
older, our hair tends to gradually thin. But there are other
factors, including hormonal factors, medical conditions and
medications that can
cause noticeable hair loss in both men and women at any age.
Dating as far back as
history will take us, balding and hair loss has been a part
of the aging process that many people fear the most. Before
Rogaine, hair replacement and laser hair therapy, both men
and women coped in various ways from various lotions and
potions to wigs and bad toupees.
Common Types of Hair
Loss in Men and Women
Androgenetic Alopecia is the medical term for genetically
related pattern hair loss, which occurs in both men and
women. The term can be broken down into it's two
consisting of ANDROGEN (Any of the various hormones that
control the appearance and development of masculine
characteristics such as testosterone). And GENETIC--the
inheritance of genes from either the mother or the father's
side of the family. Add AGE, which when coupled with
genetics, represents a time clock that will signal the hair
follicle to produce an enzyme named 5 alpha reductase. When
the testosterone present in the follicle combines with the
enzyme 5 alpha reductase, it produces dihydrotestosterone (DHT).
Hair follicle receptors are sensitive to DHT and thereby
start the process of male or female pattern hair loss.
Second, ALOPECIA meaning
hair loss, of which there are many types.
Put simply, scientists
are working against aging, hormones and genetics. This is no
easy task. Add the fact that male or female pattern hair
loss is not life threatening, and it is easy to see why many
physicians do not view hair loss as a priority in scientific
is working for you in terms of research is that large
pharmaceutical firms now know that a cure for hair loss
could mean a fortune in revenue for their companies and
stockholders. This is fuel enough and the race HAS begun.
Although we may not see a
cure in our lifetime, it is possible. Science is closer to
understanding hair loss due to many recent advancements. To
say the cure is around the corner would only be speculation
but hope certainly is alive.
Since there are other causes of hair loss, it is advisable
to consult with a dermatologist who is competent and
experienced with diagnosing hair loss. Confirming the type
of hair loss you have will make it possible for you to know
which treatment options may be best for you.
Other Causes of
Hair Loss in Men and Women
• ALOPECIA AREATA:
Generally thought to be an autoimmune disorder. Causes
"patchy" hair loss, often in small circular areas in
different areas of the scalp. According to the
National Alopecia Areata Foundation, in all forms of
alopecia areata, the hair follicles remain alive and are
ready to resume normal hair production whenever they receive
the appropriate signal. In all cases, hair regrowth may
occur even without treatment and even after many years.
• ALOPECIA TOTALIS:
Total hair loss of the scalp, (an advanced form of alopecia
• ALOPECIA UNIVERSALIS:
Hair loss of the entire body, (also an advanced form of
• TRACTION ALOPECIA:
Hair loss caused by physical stress and tension on the hair
such as prolonged use of hair weaving, corn rows etc. Done
too tightly on weak hair these can cause permanent hair
Trichotillomania is generally considered an obsessive
compulsive disorder in which the patient causes hair loss
from repeated urges to pull or twist the hair until it
breaks off. Patients are unable to stop this behavior, even
as their hair becomes thinner. Symptoms usually begin before
• TELOGEN EFFIUVIUM:
(usually temporary hair loss) Caused by Physical stress,
emotional stress, thyroid abnormalities, medications and
hormonal causes normally associated with females.
• ANAGEN EFFIUVIUM:
Generally due to internally administered medications, such
as chemotherapy agents, that poison the growing hair
All of these represent
only a few of the different types of hair loss. Androgenetic
alopecia represents nearly 95% of all hair loss in adult men
Get All Your Questions
Is Laser Hair Therapy is
right for you? When it comes to what many have called
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