Hair loss is not a disease; however most of the people in the world are having a problem of hair loss. More than half of men and women in the United States experience hair loss. About 30% of people have hair loss by age 30 years, and about 50% have hair loss by age 50 years. As we get older, both men and women experience hair loss. Male pattern hair loss is most frequent encountered than female pattern hair loss. The pattern of loosing hair may be different. It can be said that normal hair loss is a part of aging process. But if, it continues with abnormal hair loss and up to the stage of baldness, one must be aware about the indication. Hair loss can affect both men and women.
CAUSES OF HAIR LOSS:
There are various causes of hair loss. Some of the common causes can be described as followings:
- Stressful event and trauma
- Alopecia areata (a skin disease that causes hair loss on the scalp)
- Male-pattern baldness (Androgenetic alopecia- It occurs among the adults, particularly men, which is the most common cause of hair loss. The condition is caused by a combination of factors, including hormones called androgens and genetics)
- Use of chemicals for dying, bleaching, or straightening hair as well as excessive hairstyling or hairstyles that pull your hair too tight
- Inflammation of the scalp
- Fungal infection of the scalp
- Medications, such as those used in chemotherapy, gout, high blood pressure, birth control pills and too much vitamin A
- Certain disease conditions like hypothyroidism, diabetes, and alopeca areata
- Hormonal Imbalances (eg. In hypothyroidism)
- Severe illness or surgery
- Inadequate protein or iron in diet
- Poor nutrition (The condition where the body system is not getting enough vitamins, protein and minerals to sustain hair growth)
- Excessive shampooing and blow-drying
- Hormonal disorder (imbalance of thyroid hormone, male-androgen and female-estrogen)
There are some nutritional supplements which have been proven to improve the quality of hair growth. Eating a balanced and healthy diet is beneficial. Various natural remedies are available in the market which has been proven effective in stopping further hair loss and reversing hair loss. Intake of foods and supplements with Vitamin A, Vitamine C, Vitamine E, Biotin, Inositol, Niacin, Vitamin B6, Vitamin B12, Boron, Calcium, Copper, Iodine, Iron, Magnesium, Selenium, Silica, Sulphur, and Zinc. These nutrients either enhance health of hair, protects hair from breakage, prevent balding and grayness, enhances scalp circulation, or help regulation of hormones involved in skin and hair. Moreover they help the body to metabolize other minerals useful in depletion of hair, preserve skin elasticity, enhance strength of hair and keep normal hair growth and maintenance.
Most of the people take natural supplements and multi-vitamins as a part of their health system, however some of them are prepared by targeting the specific requirements of hair loss nutrition. A diet that contains whole foods, particularly the outer skin of plants such as potatoes, cucumbers, green and red peppers, and sprouts can give strength to hair because they are rich in the mineral silica. Eating a balanced, healthy diet is important and it ultimately benefits our hair.
Herbal remedies can be another useful treatment strategy. They have been receiving increased recognition nowadays for the treatment of hair loss, which can be both external and internal use. For external use, shampoos with high antioxidant or zinc can help to clear up the oily scalp. Mixture of essential oil of thyme, rosemary, lavender, grape seed, jojoba and cedarwood is helpful if applied on the areas of hair loss.
Internally, some of the common herbal plants used in the treatment of hair loss include; He Sho Wu, Ginko Biloba, Green Tea (Camellia sinesis), Polygonum multiflorum, Pygeum (Pygeum africanum), Saw Palmetto (Seranoa repens),and Stinging Nettle (Utica diocia). These herbs helps balance the stress level, improve blood circulation and support healthy scalp.
- American Academy of Dermatology (http://www.aad.org/)
- American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) (http://www.familydoctor.org/)
- Medline Plus (http://medlineplus.gov/)
- http://www.kidshealth.org/teen/ diseases_conditions/skin/hair_loss.html
- http://www.medicineonline.com/references/ Mens_Health/Hair_Loss/Hair_loss/
- http://www.healthscout.com/ency/68/429/ main.h \tml#DefinitionofHairLoss