The Hair Loss Symptoms And Causes That You Need To Know Today
Hair loss is a common phenomenon in most people. It can affect your scalp or even your entire body. To molt a certain amount of hair every day is typical. If hair drops out in more quantities than usual, it can cause psychological distress, agony, and worry. In this article, our objective is to disclose the leading signs, symptoms, and causes of hair loss so that you can consult a doctor and make arrangements for the treatment available and self-care tips effective for preventing further hair loss.
What is Hair Loss?
Usually, hair loss means falling out of hair. It’s a common scenario. Hair loss can be short-term or permanent. It can be the outcome of heredity, changes in hormones, medical problems, or a normal aging part. Hair loss can affect anyone, but it’s more usual in men.
Hair loss can encompass the area from mild hair thinning to complete baldness. Many different reasons can cause hair to fall out. Medically, hair loss goes into several categories, including-
- Telogen effluvium
- Drug side effects
- Symptom of a medical illness
- Tinea capitis (fungal infection of the scalp)
- Alopecia areata baldness
- Traumatic alopecia
- Hereditary pattern baldness, or androgenetic alopecia
Hair loss normally occurs on the scalp. But some conditions can cause hair loss in other areas of the body. Alopecia areata can cause hair loss anywhere on the body where hair grows. If you have alopecia areata, you will have hair loss on your scalp. You can also lose part or all of your-
- Nose hairs
- Pubic hair
Hair Loss Symptoms
Hair loss can come into view in many different ways. It can appear suddenly or gradually. It can affect just your head or the whole body. Generally, we lose around 50 to 100 scalp hairs each day. If you can see more hair than normal to fall out, you may come across a large amount of hair in brushes, on clothing, and in the drains of sinks and tubs. You may also find that your hair is thinner or your part is wider, or your hairline has altered or that one or more bald patches have occurred.
The first visible sign of hair loss for women is often a widening part or insufficiency in their ponytail.
Signs of hair loss appear in many ways. You may find a:
- Progressive thinning of the hair on the head
- The bald spot growing slowly
- A declining hairline that becomes more noticeable with each passing year
- Widening part
- Thinner ponytail
Many people bring out these symptoms of hair loss, which seem to appear slowly. These signs can be faint or indirect. So you may experience hair loss for months or years before you come across it. While millions of people can realize hair loss from one or more of these common signs, hair loss may occur with some other symptoms and signs. You may have hair loss along with-
- burning or stinging before sudden hair loss
- feeling intense itching and tenderness where you have hair loss
- detecting scaly bald patches associated with sores or blisters that open and ooze pus
- remarking redness, swelling, and sores that may itch and leak pus
- occurring scaly patches of psoriasis on your scalp
Here are some common signs and symptoms of hair loss explained below:
Gradual Thinning on the Top
Gradual thinning on the top is the most common sign of hair loss. It affects people over their age. In men, hair often begins to decrease at the hairline on the temples. Hair loss on the top begins at the forehead and gradually extends back over the scalp. Women typically have a widening part of their hair. A progressively common hair loss motif in older women is a diminishing hairline.
Circular Bald Spots
The other usual place to mark hair thinning in androgenetic alopecia is at the top of your head. Hair loss in the vertex scalp (the highest point of the scalp) generally spreads outward in a circular pattern, finally creating a bald spot. You may lose hair in circular or patchy bald spots on the scalp, beard, or eyebrows. Then your skin may get itchy or painful before the hair falls out.
Sudden Loosening of Hair
Another name of sudden loosening of hair is telogen effluvium. A physical or mental shock can cause hair roots to loosen prematurely. Handfuls of hair may drop out at the time of combing or washing your hair or even after gentle sprawling. This kind of hair loss normally causes overall hair thinning but is temporary. It can be acute or chronic.
There are many causes behind the sudden loosening of hair. Some of the common causes are high fevers, severe infections, childbirth, alarming chronic illness, major surgery or illnesses, serious psychological stress, crash diets with insufficient protein, over or underactive thyroid gland, and a variety of medications.
Full-Body Hair Loss
If you detect hair loss on your entire body, you may experience something other than androgenic alopecia. Full-body hair loss can also bear a sign of a drug reaction, bacterial or fungal infections, or trauma, among other things. Some medical conditions and treatments, such as chemotherapy for cancer, can result in full-body hair loss. The hair usually grows back after this type of hair loss.
Patches of Scaling that Spread Over the Scalp
Patches of scaling are a sign of tinea or fungal infection like scalp psoriasis. It may come along with broken hair, redness, swelling, and oozing. Scalp psoriasis is a common skin affection that creates raised, reddish, often scaly patches over the scalp. It can appear as a single patch or several and can even infect your entire scalp.
Scalp psoriasis itself is not responsible for hair loss. Hard or lots of scratching, harsh treatments, and the stress going along with the condition can lead to temporary hair loss. It’s good that hair usually grows back after the skin clears.
Hair Loss Causes
The hair on your head passes through a life cycle that implies growth, resting, and shedding. People normally lose 50 to 100 hairs per day. This hair fall isn’t normally perceptible because new hair grows at the same time. Hair loss occurs when new hair doesn’t replace the fallen hair.
Hair loss is related to one or more of the factors below:
- Some medical conditions such as alopecia areata, scalp infections, or trichotillomania (hair-pulling disorder)
- Changes in hormones from pregnancy, childbirth, menopause, or thyroid issues
- Some medications or supplements used for cancer, high blood pressure, depression, or arthritis
- Radiation treatment or therapy for conditions like cancer
- Physical or emotional stress
- Stylings like wearing tight ponytails or cornrows
Some of the most common causes for hair loss are as follows:
The most common and almost irresistible cause of hair loss is a hereditary condition that happens with age. Hereditary-pattern baldness is not a malady or disease but a condition causes by some combination of genetics, hormone levels, and the aging process. This condition is known as androgenic alopecia, male-pattern baldness, and female-pattern baldness. Generally, it occurs gradually and in some predictable patterns like reducing hairlines and bald spots in men and thinning hair across the crown of the scalp in women.
Family history seriously contributes to age-related hair loss. The possibility of male or female pattern hair loss depends on family history and age.
Hormonal changes due to pregnancy, childbirth, menopause, and thyroid problems can cause temporary hair loss. Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a common cause of hormonal imbalance. It may cause cysts on a woman’s ovaries, which can create hair loss. Stopping some types of birth control pills can cause a short-term hormonal imbalance. Women promoting a hormonal imbalance can experience thinning hair or hair loss on their scalp.
A wide range of medical conditions, including diabetes, lupus, iron deficiency, thyroid disease, anemia, pregnancy, and eating disorders, can cause hair loss.
Other medical conditions include autoimmune diseases, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), and skin conditions such as psoriasis and seborrheic dermatitis, which are also related to hair loss.
Medication and Supplements
Medications are invented or planned to treat a variety of health conditions. But sometimes, they disclose unexpected side effects. Side effects of some particular drugs used for cancer, arthritis, depression, heart problems, gout, and high blood pressure can cause hair loss. The following medications have some side effects that can cause hair loss-
- Blood thinners, such as warfarin
- Antidepressants, including Prozac and Zoloft
- Accutane, to treat acne
- Cholesterol-lowering drugs, such as Lopid
Excessive supplementation of some nutrients, including vitamin A, vitamin E, and selenium, certainly results in hair loss. Studies say that excessive use of vitamin A can contribute to hair loss.
If you think that your hair loss is due to a medication you are taking, you should consider seeing a doctor. The doctor may reduce the dosage or switch you to a different medication. Sudden stopping of some medications can cause serious health problems.
Radiation therapy is known as a local treatment. Because it affects only the targeted area of the body, for example, radiation therapy applied to the scalp may cause hair loss on the head (even eyebrows and lashes). But the radiation therapy to other parts of the body does not usually seem to cause hair loss in the head area.
Hair loss or thinning is a probable side effect of some breast cancer treatments using certain types of-
- radiation therapy
- hormonal therapy
- Immunotherapy or
- targeted therapy
Different types of radiation and different treatments can cause different types and amounts of hair loss. Doctors call it alopecia. In these cases, some hair may grow back after treatment is ended. But some people may have longer-term or permanent hair loss or thinning.
A Very Stressful Event
Many people may have a general thinning of hair or hair loss several months after a physical, mental or emotional shock. This type of hair loss is temporary. Any stressful event can cause this type of hair loss.
The following three types of hair loss can be associated with high stressful events-
- Telogen effluvium: In telogen effluvium, some serious stress pushes large numbers of hair follicles into a resting phase. Within several months, the affected hairs may fall out with a sudden simple combing or washing of your hair.
- Trichotillomania: Trichotillomania is an irresistible impulse to pull out hair from your scalp, eyebrows, or other areas of your body. Hair tugging can be a motif of dealing with negative or uncomfortable feelings like stress, tension, loneliness, boredom, or frustration.
- Alopecia areata: Different factors are thought to cause alopecia areata, including some severe stress. Along with alopecia areata, the body’s immune system attacks the hair follicles, which causes hair loss.
Hairstyles and Treatment
Too many hairstylings, like pigtails or cornrows, pull your hair tight and cause a type of hair loss called traction alopecia. Some hot-oil hair treatments and permanents also play roles in causing hair loss. If any scarring occurs, hair loss can be permanent.
Hair loss may have a variety of signs, symptoms, and causes. This article has tried to disclose them so that you can manage hair loss in a befitting manner. Try to apply effective home care treatments or go to a doctor if needed.