Hair loss is a problem that most people face at some stage in their lives. This condition is more common in men than women. To save oneself from the embarrassment of that bald spot, it is essential to understand the causes and also the various treatments available to fight baldness.
Causes of Baldness:
1. Dihydrotestosterone (DHT): This one enemy is as threatening as its name sounds. It is very harmful to the hair follicles in the scalp. A derivative of testosterone- the male hormone, it would stop at nothing to make sure the hair follicles dead. How much damage DHT causes it determined by the amount of DHT that is present in the scalp follicles. It is responsible for shrinking the hair follicles, thus making the hair unhealthy and ultimately destroying them. DHT gives rise to Androgenetic alopecia- the hair loss condition affecting both the genders, but is worse in men.
2. Alopecia areata: This is a skin disease that can affect almost anybody with hair. This condition is characterized by temporary baldness. The scalp develops bald patches, but the good news is that the hair grows back spontaneously. The cause of Alopecia areata is an abnormal immune system. This leads to autoimmunity- an immune system strangely attacks the body of the person. Consequently, the hair follicles too are under attack and therefore get ruined in the process.
3. Iron deficiency: Decreased iron levels in the body lead to anemia which has several harmful effects. While serious effects are mental deficiency, memory loss and fatigue, one of the effects is baldness too.
4. Telogen Effluvium: This factor is to be blamed for baldness, when the body undergoes some traumatic situations. Examples are a severe infection, childbirth, malnutrition, extreme stress or a surgery. The shedding of hair starts about six weeks after such an event. The person suffering might lose a handful of hair when this condition is at its peak. Telogen effluvium continues in women for a longer time as compared to that in men.
1. Nutrition: Protein and Omega-3 fatty acids are the most important when it comes to hair growth. Two to three ounce servings of meat should be consumed daily. Another good option is four to five servings of beans and dairy products. Omega-3 fatty acids help make the scalp healthier and also lower inflammation. Sources are nuts, fish and eggs. Essential vitamins to be consumed are Vitamin D- found Salmon, Herring, walnuts, pumpkin seeds and avocado. Another food is walnut that has Vitamin E and copper- both of which are great for hair.
2. Use good products: Be it shampoos, conditioners or hair oils- many products are abundant in chemicals. These toxic chemicals are significantly harmful for the hair and one of the culprits for baldness. Avoid such products and instead go for herbal shampoos and hair oil.
3. Medicines: There are foams and lotions available in the markets, that inhibit hair loss. But once started, the person should continue the treatment as the hair loss will resume if the treatment is stopped. Minoxidil is the most famous foam/lotion for curing baldness. It is approved by FDA and marketed as Rogaine, Regaine. The pill Finasteride is also prescribed to such people. Considered more effective than Minoxidil, it prevents the conversion of testosterone to DHT- responsible for baldness. The pill that doctors prescribe for women is spironolactone. This drug has anti-androgen effect, thus promoting hair growth.
4. Hair Transplant: This procedure can be heavy on your pockets, but the results are quite satisfactory and permanent as well. The process involves several sessions, in which the surgeon transfers hair from one part of the scalp to the bald patch.