Monday, March 11, 2013

Main reasons why women lose hair

Photo Credit: BHL
 As a hairstylist, I get lots of questions, but probably the most asked question I get is regarding hair loss. I would say 7 out of 10 people tell me they're worried about their thinning hair.  "It used to be so thick" they say.  Although I have a lot of thick hair, mine too has receded over the past several years around my hairline.  Funny, my facial hair has not receded in the least, but the hair on my head has!  Don't get me wrong, I still have a ton of hair and am very thankful, but I understand how it gets harder to style your hair because of it thinning.  It just doesn't style the same.

  1. Telogen Effluvium hair loss is caused  from extreme stress, pregnancy, extreme weight loss, major surgery, medications such as antidepressants, beta blockers, non steroidal anti inflammatory drugs, or the most common known cause is extremely irritating boyfriends otherwise known as assholes.  Ok, so irritating boyfriends, otherwise known as assholes, are not really the most commonly known cause. I was kidding...kinda.  During the Telogen Effluvium phase the hair cycle basically speeds up abnormally and moves quickly into the shedding phase.  Most people notice this 3 to 6 months after a major event such as surgery or childbirth.  Or for me, boyfriend removal.

Talk with your doctor about maybe changing some medications you may be taking and try to reduce your stress level...really is he worth it? Or, my favorite is Cabernet Sauvignon..very good for boyfriend hangovers.  Ok, I'm beating the boyfriend card to death...I shall say no more about that!  My mother's hair thinned out drastically when she started taking cholesterol medicine.  I here exercise is good for reducing stress so maybe try taking a walk or ride a bike and get back to me.  Maybe I'll try it!

  2.  Heredity.  I can't stand heredity.  For me, this is where I get my lack of intelligence, talent, success, boobs, ass, but hey I've got tons of hair!  I must say my parents were smart so my missing components must have came from a cousin.  I don't get it, but I know God knew what he was doing when passing out my stuff.  Some day I will understand.  Anyhow, we can simply have issues because of our ancestry and this can start in our 20s.  Rogain may be a solution for us here.

 3.   Hypothyroidism/Hyperthyroid Hypo is too little hormone and Hyperthyroid which is too much hormone.  Thyroid hormone is responsible for how your body functions basically.  This, of course, will affect your hair, skin and nails. They can become more brittle and break easily.  Some of this information I got from articles written by Theodore C. Friedman, MD, MPH, Chief of the Division Endocrinology, Metabolism, and Molecular Medicine at Charles Drew University in Los Angeles and is the co-author of The Everything Guide to Thyroid Disease.

Symptoms of Hyperthyroid is weight loss, heart palpitations, nervousness, irritability, diarrhea, moist skin, muscle weakness, startled appearance in the eyes.  This also can be Irritable Bowel Syndrome, I have most of these symptoms..nevermind!  I will not mention the possibility of boyfriend syndrome...cuz I said I wouldn't!  So make sure you don't have some funky hormones goin on...gettem checked!

4.  Autoimmune diseases.    Lupus is a chronic auto immune disease that attacks healthy tissue.  Symptoms include extreme fatigue, headaches, oral ulcers, painful, swollen joints and possibly a butterfly shaped rash across the nose, and a sensitivity to sunlight.  You can have a mild case of hair loss or severe case of hair loss in patches and can have a rash on scalp.  (Arthur Weinstein, MD Director of the Division of the Rheumatology at the Washington Hospital Center.)

5.  Iron Deficiency Anemia.  Basically means you need some iron gurrl!  It causes extreme fatigue, weakness, pale skin (otherwise known as caucasian), headaches, difficulty concentrating, cold hands and feet, hair loss, and any exertion may leave you short of breath.  Blood work can easily determine whether or not your anemic.  Eat some green, leafy vegees, a big ol fat steak and maybe an iron pill along with some vitamin C, which helps with the absorption of iron, and call it good!  Hair supplements including biotin, silica and L-Cysteine may help in combination with iron supplements.

 6. Polysystic Ovarian Syndrome.  The ovaries produce too many male hormones often causing infertility. Symptoms normally include facial hair growth, irregular periods, acne, cysts on ovaries and you may experience more hair elsewhere on the body.  So if you're not old like me, you prolly want to get a blood test for high testosterone levels.  You may need some birth control pills or some sprironlactone pills (which is what I take) that controls male hormones.  (I still have to shave my face...ain't no blocking my male hormones apparently!)  Losing weight can help with the male hormone too...of course...they all want us to be skinny..right?  Assholes!

7.  Seborrheic dermatitis.  Causes the scalp to shed it's skin which causes greasy, yellowish scales which you would see on you shoulders and hair. Ewe! If this is you, please buy some dandruff shampoo!  Also could be a result of yeast called melassezia (hormonal changes or excess oil in the skin).

8.   Psoriasis.  Which is an auto immune disease and causes excessive skin cell turnover.  This produces a very thick, white scale on the scalp.

9.  Ringworm.  A fungus you contract by touching an infected person or animal. You'll see red patches on your scalp, which may be diffuse. My son had this and it's gross!  Don't get this!  You need to see a dermatologist and get medicine for these conditions.  Or you can always do the Thelma and Louise thing..just kidding! That's never an option!

10.  Alopecia Areata.  An autoimmune disease as well.  It attacks your hair follicles and they're no known causes.  It's usually brought on by severe stress or illness.  Alopecia Areata causes round, smooth patches of baldness on the scalp, eyebrows or legs.  Alopecia totalis is total hair loss on the head. Alopecia Universalis is hair loss over the entire body.  It would be a very good idea to seek medical attention at this time. And maybe an alternative doctor too...just sayin..seriously they're shampoos and medicines that can help.  I like Nioxin, a line of hair products for thinning hair.

And being that I'm a hairstylist, I would never take money out of my pocket, but over coloring and styling can wreak havoc on your hair.  Chemically straightening, bleaching, and flat irons are prolly your biggest culprits for breakage so try to minimize these services.  But it's ok if you're my client.

Hair loss affects millions of people and is very devastating for women. It doesn't seem like there's a whole lot of help out there but there are things we can do to help ourselves.  But, remember it ain't all about the hair gurrl!  If this is where your happiness lies and your hair is what defines you as person, well, I know a really good therapist! You're a beautiful you!

Photo Credit: She Knows