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Why Do We Lose Hair?

4/10/2013 3:53:40 PM | by Anonymous

Hair Loss

After a recent stint at streaking her hair gold, a friend of mine complained to me that she's noticed the top of her head has a lot less hair than before. Although, I can't really say if she's actually lost hair or if the gold streaks have sold her the illusion, I can say that I sympathise with her. While there are surely many more important things to lose sleep over, most of us women lose it over things like wanting to have healthier, longer hair and less weight. Wouldn't it be great if we all had hair like Rapunzel??!! But, to be fair, hair doesn't just keep on growing. It goes through stages of growth just like we do.


We have about 100,000 hair follicles on our heads, and the life span of each strand is actually a three-staged-life process. The first stage of life that a hair goes through is called Anagen. While in the Anagen stage the hair grows for about 2 to 5 years to its full length. About 85% to 90% of the hair on our heads is in the Anagen stage. An interesting fact about the Anagen stage is that the time span of this stage varies from person to person, and the length that each person's hair is able to grow to depends on the length of their Anagen stage. The second stage, or between stage, of the life of a hair is called the Catagen stage. About 1% of our hair is in this stage and it usually lasts about 2 to 3 weeks. The third and last stage of our hair is called Telogen. This is the stage when the follicle is ready to fall out and be replaced by a new follicle. About 10% to 15% of our hair is in this stage that lasts around 3 to 4 months.


...Well, clearly, having hair that just keeps on growing and never falls out could work in Disney land, but in our real world hair does fall out, and regrow, and fall out, and regrow. However, excessive hair fall is nobody's cup of tea. When a person suffers from excessive hair loss this is known as Alopecia. Alopecia, or excessive hair loss, can be caused for several reasons. Some of which are:


Stress... as we all know is the culprit for most receding hairlines. My hairstylist shared his interesting perspective on this, saying that the part of our brain that we use for thinking is in the front of our head, so the person who stresses too much will often lose hair on the front of their heads. Though I'm not sure as to the scientific facts of his theory, it does in some way make sense. Stressful jobs, relationships, and circumstances all can lead to a loss of hair. This is why it is important to learn to deal with life with a positive and peaceful mindset.


Illness or Surgery... can also be the result of hair loss. The good thing, though, is that hair that is lost during an illness or a surgery will usually grow back if the individual is using the right treatments. However, any and all hair growth treatments after a surgery should only be used after you've consulted your doctor.


Hormonal problems... also can cause short term hair loss. If your thyroid gland is not functioning properly and is either overactive or underactive, then temporary hair loss could result. An imbalance of male/female hormones which is called androgens and estrogens can also be associated with hair loss.


Male Pattern Baldness... is a genetic problem that runs in many families and causes a gradual recession of the individual's hair line. Although it's generally most common in males, it can also happen to females. Male Pattern Baldness varies from person to person and the first traces are usually noticeable during a person's teen years.


Improper Hair Care... When a person does not care for their hair, wears certain styles that damage the hair, uses chemical based products too often, and does not clean their hair properly this can lead to extreme premature loss of hair.


While knowing the reasons behind hair loss is probably enough to make your own hair feel weak in the knees, if you are doing your best to eat healthy foods and take good care of your hair, then you have little reason to be alarmed. There are also hair loss treatment products like minoxidil regaine for women that have been known to rapidly boost hair growth. Regaine for women also has the added benefit of helping strengthen your hair and make it grow thicker by increasing the supply of blood and nutrients to each hair follicle.


Author Bio: Ale Rossi is an avid scientific writer. She specializes in writing articles on beauty & hair care and some of the hair care products for hair loss treatment. She has a deep faith in the potential of natural cures and this is well reflected in her articles.

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