Hair Loss Treament

Causes of hair loss

The subject of hair loss is a source of amusement for many people but the reality is very different. Anyone who is going bald male or female finds it hard to cope with and experiences a loss of confidence and self-esteem as a result.

Hair loss is a serious issue

We have all heard the jokes about baldness but it is a highly sensitive subject that needs to be handled with sympathy. This section discusses the various causes of hair loss in men and women and why for them it is no laughing matter.

These causes include:

Male pattern baldness and the three medical conditions are the most common causes of hair loss in men. But in many cases it is genetic. If either of your parents lost their hair at an early age then there is a fair chance you will do the same.

This inherited tendency affects women as well as men.

Hair loss in women is also caused by conditions such as alopecia areata but hormones also play a part. The hormones fluctuate wildly during pregnancy and fall after the menopause which accounts for a loss of hair.

Other causes include stress, side effects of certain prescription medications, overuse of hair products and excessive doses of Vitamin A. Trichotillomania or obsessive hair pulling is another cause.

How common is hair loss in the UK?

It is much more common than you think. Male pattern baldness affects half of all men in the UK and nearly the same number of women after the menopause.

A small percentage of women experience hair loss before the age of 40 but this increases once they have reached the menopause.

One person in a 100 is affected by alopecia areata.

Everyone loses hair as part of the hair growth cycle but it is when something disrupts this cycle that results in excessive hair loss.

How does the hair growth cycle work?

Hair is lost in a normal hair growth cycle which includes 3 phases:

  • Growing stage (known as 'Anagen')
  • Intermediate stage (known as 'Catagen')
  • Shedding stage (known as 'Telogen')

The growth stage is as the name says: the hair follicles grow new hairs during a 3 year period.

The intermediate stage occurs between growth and resting. It lasts for around 2 weeks and in that time, the hairs prepare themselves for the next stage.

The shedding stage lasts for 3 months. The hairs rest during this time but any older hairs will be shed at the end of this stage. The cycle is then repeated. This is a constant process in which new hairs grow and old hairs die and fall out.

Hair Loss Cycle

The pattern of hair growth and loss is genetically determined.

Ageing and hair loss

We lose hair as we age which is due to a fall in hormone levels and a drop in protein which is needed for hair growth. Plus the body takes longer to repair and regenerate itself which includes the production of new hair.

The hair follicles slow down their production of new hair and also spend an increasing amount of time in the shedding (telogen) stage. This occurs as we age which eventually results in baldness.

If you stop and think about it for a moment: your body is slowing down which affects all processes including hair growth. This is entirely normal and all part of growing old.