Real experiences, real information.
Welcome to Alopecia Tips. I’m Ismail.
Whether you’re curious about the reasons behind hair loss, searching for effective treatments, or simply want to understand everything there is to know about this issue, my articles have got you covered. Join me on this journey to healthier, more luscious locks.
About hair loss
Hair loss is worrying, right?
Hair loss is like a nightmare for many people.
Male Androgenetic Alopecia (MAA) stands as the prevailing type of hair loss among men globally, accounting for 90% of all male hair loss cases. Unfortunately, male pattern hair loss is typically unavoidable for those genetically predisposed to it.
Female hair loss is common in women as well as in men. More than 50% of women have to fight hair loss at some point in their lives.
Statistics indicate that hair loss is a common concern, affecting approximately 85% of men and around 33% of women at some point in their lives.
How can we help?
Frequently asked questions about hair loss
Hair loss, also known as alopecia or baldness, is the condition where hair gradually diminishes on specific areas of the head or body. It can range from affecting a localized spot to widespread coverage across the entire body.
Hair loss can stem from both internal and external factors. Commonly, factors like hormonal fluctuations, medication usage, environmental conditions, genetic predisposition, and insufficient hair care practices contribute to hair loss.
It’s worth noting that hair loss is more prevalent in men. Male pattern baldness, the primary culprit in male hair loss, often occurs due to the binding of dihydrotestosterone (DHT), a male hormone, to hair follicles. This process leads to their shrinkage, gradual closure, and eventual hair fall.
Vitamin deficiencies can cause hair loss. Vitamins that cause hair loss are vitamins C, B and D. Especially Biotin, Riboflavin, Folate and Vitamin B12 deficiencies are the cause of hair loss.
The hormone responsible for inducing hair loss in both women and men is known as dihydrotestosterone (DHT). This hormone exhibits a propensity to bind to receptors located within the hair follicles, subsequently leading to the contraction, weakening, and eventual shedding of these follicles.
If you find yourself grappling with the distressing issue of hair loss, it is imperative to first ascertain the root cause of this concern. To accomplish this, it is advisable to schedule a consultation with a specialized dermatologist.
Depending on the underlying factors contributing to your hair loss, a range of treatment modalities may be explored, including pharmaceutical interventions, Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) therapy, and hair transplantation.
In cases where the hair loss is not hereditary but instead arises from various medical conditions – such as those induced by radiotherapy or chemotherapy utilized in cancer treatment, vitamin deficiencies, physical ailments, or inadequate hair care practices – it is possible to mitigate and rectify the issue by addressing the fundamental causes.
The cause of sudden hair loss is not genetic. The cause of this situation may be changing shampoo, combing the wrong hair, squeezing or stretching the hair, and exposing the hair to bad physical conditions. Thyroid disorders, anemia, and pregnancy can cause sudden onset hair loss.
Other causes of sudden hair loss are stress, mental illness, depression, anxiety, and medication use. Especially blood pressure medications, stomach medications, kidney medications, high doses of vitamin A, birth control pills, and drugs that cause hormonal changes cause sudden hair loss.
The spectrum of B vitamins collectively contributes to fortifying hair follicles, augmenting follicle proliferation, and stimulating the synthesis of keratin, a key component for hair health. Biotin, commonly called B7, exerts a particularly notable influence on hair growth. Inadequate biotin levels are known to precipitate hair loss. Therefore, if you are grappling with hair loss attributed to vitamin insufficiency, it is advisable to consider B complex supplementation under the guidance of a medical professional.
These essential B vitamins are naturally abundant in a variety of dietary sources. Notably, red meat is a rich reservoir of B vitamins, and they can also be acquired through the consumption of hazelnuts, eggs, potatoes, fish, and additional egg servings.
Iron deficiency is a significant contributor to hair loss. When iron levels are insufficient, hair follicles are deprived of the necessary oxygen, impeding their growth and disrupting the hair growth cycle.
The presence of adequate iron plays a pivotal role in enhancing circulation and ensuring the provision of oxygen to hair follicles. Consequently, individuals with low iron levels often experience hair loss. Fortunately, in cases of hair loss attributed to insufficient iron levels, a remedy exists: normalizing iron levels through the supplementation of iron can lead to hair regrowth.
For those seeking to bolster their iron intake, several excellent sources are available, including oysters, beans, lentils, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, and grass-fed beef and bison.
Most recent articles
Best medications for hair loss treatment
Finasteride is a medicine called 5-alpha reductase inhibitors used to treat hair loss. Finasteride treats male pattern baldness by blocking the male hormone that causes prostate enlargement. Finasteride is the most used hair treatment drug.
Finasteride is a medication used for hair loss. Requires prescription.
Generic Kirkland & Rogaine
Minoxidil is a solution used to treat male pattern baldness. Minoxidil belongs to the vasodilator drug class. Minoxidil accelerates the hair growth cycle and thickens hair follicles by increasing blood flow to the scalp.
Minoxidil is a medication used for hair loss. It does not require a prescription.
Avodart is a medication used to slow and stop prostate enlargement in men. Avodart is effective in the treatment of hair loss and male pattern baldness. Avodart both prevents hair loss and supports hair growth.
Avodart is a medicine used for hair loss. Requires prescription.
Aldactone is a drug belonging to the class of aldosterone receptor antagonists, used to treat hair loss caused by high androgen levels. Aldactone reduces androgen production and blocks its effects on hair.
Aldactone is a medication used for hair loss. Requires prescription.
Hair Loss: Causes, Treatment & Prevention
Hair loss is a skin condition that needs prompt treatment and can occasionally be the initial sign of other body-wide illnesses. Lack of vitamins and minerals, low blood count, hormonal issues, stress, and emotional distress can lead to hair loss.
What is hair loss?
A healthy scalp usually has around 100,000 hairs. Adults typically lose 100-150 hairs a day, depending on how often they wash and comb their hair.
Hair loss can happen because of hormones, diet, chemicals, genes, illnesses, medicines, stress, or scalp issues. Normally, hair loss lasts up to two months in healthy people. If it keeps happening three times a year and goes on for more than two months, it might be a sign of a serious problem and should be checked by an expert.
Hair loss usually starts about 3-4 months after something triggers it and can get better in 6-12 months once the reasons are fixed.
A hair’s life can be split into three main parts. The longest part is the growth phase when hair grows about 1 cm every month. After that, the hair rests for a few weeks, and then it goes into a shedding phase for about 2-3 weeks. Hair in the shedding phase breaks away from the hair follicle and falls out over 2-4 months.
This cycle happens throughout your life. You can’t tell what phase your hair is in just by looking at it. Usually, 85-90% of your hair is in the growth phase, 1-2% is resting, and 10-15% is shedding. It’s normal to lose up to 100 hairs a day when you don’t wash your hair because of the way hair works.
What are the types of hair loss?
Androgenetic alopecia is a gradual condition affected by hormones that affect both women and men, leading to hair loss in people with a genetic predisposition. It is often referred to as male pattern baldness, male alopecia, or widespread baldness, and is the most common cause of hair loss in humans.
In women experiencing androgenetic alopecia, hair loss occurs all over the scalp. In men, androgenetic alopecia begins above the temples and involves thinning at the crown of the head, forming an “M” shape.
Androgenetic alopecia in men is considered a natural physiological process. In women, it may present as female-type androgenetic alopecia and may also develop along with hormonal imbalances and related symptoms.
Alopecia areata (ringworm) is a common autoimmune disorder that causes regional hair loss. Autoimmune disorders happen when the body’s defense system mistakenly fights against its cells and tissues.
Most people who get this illness experience hair loss in small round areas, like coins. In some cases, this illness can be quite severe, affecting multiple areas of the body.
There are different types of alopecia areata with different characteristics. Besides causing sudden and local hair loss on the scalp, it can also affect eyebrows, eyelashes, beards, and other body hairs.
Alopecia areata develops slowly and can come back over the years.
Certain situations can increase the risk of getting alopecia areata or ringworm. These include:
- Having family members who also have ringworm.
- Having asthma.
- Having Down syndrome.
- Having pernicious anemia.
- Having seasonal allergies.
- Having thyroid gland problems.
- Having vitiligo.
Anagen effluvium refers to a temporary loss of hair. This often happens because of issues in the hair growth cycle caused by treatments like radiation and chemotherapy used in cancer care.
Telogen effluvium is usually marked by losing around 100 resting hairs each day. When this happens for less than 6 months, it’s termed acute telogen effluvium; if it persists for more than 6 months, it’s known as chronic telogen effluvium.
Anagen effluvium ceases, and hair regrows when radiation and chemotherapy treatments are discontinued.
Telogen effluvium is a condition characterized by ongoing hair loss, primarily affecting women, with hair falling out at varying rates. In this condition, hair loss persists as new hair continues to grow. However, because more hair is shed than replaced, the overall hair thickness diminishes over time.
In cases of chronic telogen effluvium, there is no significant change in hair color, but hair density decreases, especially as hair continues to grow. Occasionally, slight recession and hair thinning may be noticed around the temples.
Stress and hormonal fluctuations are the usual culprits behind telogen effluvium.
Patients with telogen effluvium may have varying hair lengths because of the disparity between hair growth and hair loss. As a result, some parts of the hair remain long, while others remain short.
This type of hair loss can be treated by treating the underlying causes.
Tinea capitis is a type of fungus that occurs on the scalp. Hair fungus affects the scalp as well as the hair. It prevents hair from growing or causes hair loss in some areas of the scalp.
Tinea capitis varies in size but generally spreads in a circular area. Redness, itching, inflammation, dandruff, broken hair, and skin loss may occur in these areas.
Tinea capitis can be treated with fungal treatment applied to the scalp.
Tinea capitis is contagious.
Traction alopecia is a broad term used to describe hair loss caused by actions like pulling, stretching, or exposure to heat. This condition is typically observed in women who frequently style their hair in ways such as ponytails, buns, or braids.
Preventing hair loss from traction alopecia is possible when detected early. However, if timely measures are not taken, and the same hair-stressing practices persist, it can lead to irreversible hair loss.
Common symptoms of traction alopecia include:
- Scalp redness
- Small pimple-like bumps
- Tingling and pain on the scalp
- Inflammation of hair follicles
- Blisters on the scalp
Over an extended period of exposure to these harmful practices, hair follicles may sustain so much damage that they lose their ability to generate new hair. This results in the death of the hair follicles and permanent hair loss.
Risk factors for hair loss
Hair loss is mainly influenced by genetic factors. If individuals have a genetic inclination toward hair loss, it can typically happen after they reach 18 years of age.
The primary factors that increase the likelihood of experiencing hair loss include:
- A family history of baldness on either your mother’s or father’s side.
- Similar to the previous point.
- Significant reduction in body weight.
- Specific medical conditions like diabetes and lupus.
- Elevated stress levels.
- Inadequate nutrition.
- Lack of essential vitamins.
How is hair loss diagnosed?
To identify the reasons for hair loss, it’s advisable to consult a dermatologist. The dermatologist will gather information about your daily life, the medications and foods you consume, and your family’s history of baldness. Afterward, they will conduct a physical examination to pinpoint the primary causes of hair loss.
The dermatologist may also require a lab test of your hair follicles to check for any scalp issues that could be responsible for the hair loss. In some instances, specific scalp problems like Demodex mites can trigger hair loss.
Additional tests that may be conducted during the hair loss diagnosis include:
- Blood tests: These tests assess your thyroid health to rule out any thyroid-related conditions.
- Skin test: This laboratory examination looks for potential scalp issues.
- Biopsy: A hair biopsy is a diagnostic technique that can identify problems such as hair follicle infections or inflammation.
How common is hair loss?
Approximately 85% of men and 33% of women will experience hair loss at some point in their lives. This issue is more prevalent than one may realize. Male pattern baldness, also known as androgenetic alopecia, accounts for approximately 95% of hair loss cases in men.
Hair loss, particularly androgenetic alopecia, is quite widespread in contemporary times. It impacts over 50 million men and over 30 million women in the United States. The majority of cases of male or female pattern hair loss are passed down through generations and are managed through medication or surgical procedures.
What causes hair loss?
Hair loss can occur due to factors within the body and outside of it. It’s important to note that male and female pattern hair loss cannot be traced back to just one cause. Here are some of the most common reasons why hair loss happens:
- Immune system disorders
- Not getting enough essential vitamins
- Infections caused by bacteria
- Infections caused by viruses
- Growths or masses in the body
- Issues with the thyroid gland
- Overactivity of the thyroid gland (hyperthyroidism)
- Thalassemia, a blood disorder
- HIV, a virus that affects the immune system
- The use of medications or medical treatments like chemotherapy or radiotherapy
- The natural aging process
- Experiencing high levels of stress
What are the symptoms of hair loss?
Hair loss can commence abruptly or gradually. Many individuals endure ongoing hair loss.
- Gradual thinning: Gradual thinning pertains to the gradual reduction and loss of hair strands, commencing from the top of the head. This form of hair loss serves as one of the initial indications of male pattern baldness. In male pattern baldness, the gradual thinning starts at the top of the head and advances towards the hairline. In female pattern baldness, the gradual thinning initiates at the crown of the head and spreads across the entire scalp.
- Circular shedding: Circular shedding denotes hair loss occurring in a specific area, typically forming a circular pattern on the scalp. Patchy hair loss of this kind can bring about itching and discomfort.
- Sudden hair loss: Sudden hair loss is an exceedingly uncommon occurrence. It typically arises due to physical or psychological factors. Recent changes in shampoo, improper hair combing techniques, or excessive pulling or squeezing of the hair can trigger sudden hair loss. This type of hair loss is often not permanent. Furthermore, chemotherapy or radiotherapy treatments can also result in sudden hair loss.
- Flaking: Flaking scalp patches manifest as patchy hair loss accompanied by dandruff-like flakes distributed across the entire scalp. This condition may be attributed to fungal infections or ringworm.
How can I prevent hair loss?
While it’s not possible to entirely eliminate the occurrence of hair loss, it is essential to engage in proper hair care practices to prolong the retention of your hair on the scalp and minimize hair loss. Here are several approaches to mitigate hair loss:
- Seek a dermatologist’s guidance if you have medical conditions like thyroid issues.
- Choose gentle hair care products to avoid allergies or dandruff.
- Eat a well-rounded diet with essential nutrients for healthy hair.
- During chemotherapy, wear a hat to shield your scalp from sunlight.
- Avoid tight hairstyles that stress hair follicles.
- Manage stress, as it can worsen hair loss.
- Keep your hair dry for overall health.
How is hair loss treated?
There are various ways to treat hair loss, depending on what is causing it. Hair loss can be addressed through methods like medication, hormone therapy, and hair transplantation. However, if your hair loss is due to thyroid disease, cancer, or malnutrition, your doctor should initially address these underlying issues. Correcting the root cause is often the primary goal in treating hair loss.
Today, many treatments focus on reducing the impact of genetic hair loss.
- Medication: Medications to combat hair loss are widely used nowadays. Over-the-counter drugs, like Minoxidil, which you apply to your scalp, are typically the first-line treatments when hair loss begins.
- Hair transplantation: In cases of significant hair loss, patients may opt for hair transplantation to achieve rapid results. This procedure involves transplanting hair follicles from a dense hair area to the balding region.
- Platelet-rich plasma (PRP): By separating plasma from your blood and injecting it into your scalp, PRP therapy can help slow down hair loss and encourage new hair growth.
- Vitamins and supplements: If hair loss is due to a vitamin deficiency, your doctor may use vitamin supplements to minimize hair loss.