Hair loss can actually be a normal part of aging, but it can also signal underlying health issues. Common causes include genetics, hormonal changes, medical conditions, medications, and nutritional deficiencies. Some hair loss is temporary, while other types can be permanent. Knowing when to see a doctor can help you get the right treatment to slow or reverse the loss.
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What Causes Hair Loss?
Hair loss has many causes.
Hereditary Hair Loss
Your family history plays a big role in hair loss. If your parents or grandparents had hair loss, you might have it too. The most common type of this loss is called male-pattern baldness, but women can experience it too, according to American Academy of Dermatology Association. The medical term for this is androgenic alopecia.
Hormones affect many parts of your body, including your hair. Changes in hormones, such as during pregnancy, menopause, or due to thyroid problems, can cause hair to thin or fall out.
Some diseases can cause hair loss. For example, lupus and diabetes are known to make hair fall out. Scalp infections and a condition called alopecia areata, where your immune system attacks hair follicles, are other medical reasons for losing hair.
Medications and Treatments
If you’re taking certain medications like blood thinners, high blood pressure medicine or undergoing treatments like chemotherapy, you may notice hair loss. It can be a side effect, but usually, the hair grows back after stopping the medication or treatment.
Lack of Proper Nutrients
Your hair needs the right nutrients to grow. If you don’t get enough vitamins and minerals like iron, protein, and vitamin B, you might lose hair. Eating a balanced diet with plenty of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains can help keep your hair healthy.
Hair Treatments and Styling
Too much styling or harsh hair treatments can cause hair to weaken and break. Avoiding harsh chemicals and using gentle hair care products can prevent this type of hair loss.
Believe it or not, stress can potentially cause hair to fall out too. Hence, finding ways to relax and manage stress. Such as squeezing a stress ball, listening to music, taking a nap, deep breathing, and exercising can benefit not only your hair but also your overall well-being.
When to See a Doctor
You should consider seeing a doctor if:
- Your hair is falling out in clumps.
- You notice sudden or uneven hair loss.
- You have pain or itching in your scalp.
- Your skin becomes red, scaly, or has other unusual symptoms.
Seeing a doctor early can make a big difference in getting the right treatment. The doctor may perform tests, ask about your family history, and review the medications you are taking to figure out the cause. Then, they can recommend treatments like medications, laser therapy, or changes in diet to help with your hair loss.
In short, if you notice something unusual about your hair loss or if it’s bothering you, don’t hesitate to reach out to a healthcare provider. They are there to help and guide you toward the best possible solutions for your situation.
Further Reading: 7 Remedies That Can Improve Your Hair Loss Naturally