What Causes Hair Loss? - Top 10 Reasons for Hair Loss
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What Causes Hair Loss? - Top 10 Reasons for Hair Loss

What causes hair loss? Excessive hair loss and dramatic thinning of hair can be due to variety of different conditions. A major reason for hair loss is genetics. Shedding of hair can mostly be due to natural cycle of hair growth and it is natural to lose 50-100 strands of hair a day. In this article, you will learn about different conditions that can contribute to hair loss.

Hair loss is a common problem and can drastically change the appearance of an individual. Both men and women tend to lose some amount of hair with age.  It is natural to lose 50-100 strands of hair a day. Any hair loss exceeding that amount is defined as hair loss.

 Excessive loss of hair can occur due to improper hair care, hormonal changes, iron deficiency, medications and other underlying conditions. So what causes hair loss? Here are top 10 common reasons for hair loss:

  • Poor nutrition: Hair is made of protein and deficiency of protein can result in hair loss. Fad diet, malnutrition and eating disorders lead to inadequate amount of protein. Due to inadequate amount of protein, hair growth enters the resting phase to save enough protein for essential body functioning. On a crash diet, massive hair loss can occur in two to three months.
  • Diseases: Thyroid disorders can cause hair loss. Under activity or over activity of thyroid gland can result in hair loss. Hair loss due to thyroid disorders can be reversed with medication. Lupus, an autoimmune disorder also causes hair loss.
  • Fever: High fever or severe infection can cause hair loss. Three to four months after infections and after major illnesses, hair may look thin due to reduced hair growth. Primary reason for such reduced hair growth is due to hair growth entering the resting phase.
  • Rough handling of hair: Combing hair too often can cause hair loss. It is true that combing helps to distribute the natural oils from the scalp to the shaft, but avoid excessive combing of hair.  Shampooing excessively also contributes to hair loss. Use mild nourishing and conditioning shampoo and wide toothed comb made out of natural material for your hair.
  • Hair styles: Hair bands and bands with metallic parts can pull the hair excessively resulting in hair loss. Constant pulling of hair as in case of ponytails can result in hair loss from the sides of scalp.
  • Fungal infections: Number of fungal infections can contribute to hair loss. Ringworm infection is a common fungal infection and can leave a bald patch on the scalp. Brittle hair, itchy, inflamed and oozing red patches can be seen on the affected area. Oral medications are effective in treating such infections.
  • Hereditary hair loss: Women can have very thin hair and men can have complete hair loss in case of hereditary hair loss. Genes are responsible for this form of hair loss and it is widely known as androgenic alopecia or androgenetic alopecia. 
  • Childbirth: Soon after childbirth many women experience hair loss due to drop in hormone levels that surged in pregnancy. Hair loss can continue until six or seven months and the problem resolves on its own.
  • Iron deficiency: Iron deficiency also results in hair loss. Difficulties in iron absorption or inadequate amount of iron in their diet can result in hair loss. Women experiencing heavy menstrual cycles are likely to develop iron deficiency and resulting hair loss.
  • Hair pulling: Otherwise known as Trichotillomania, is a serious problem affecting children and some adults. Among children, it can affect more girls than boys. Individuals can be under the compulsion to pull one’s own hair as part of overcoming their stress. It can also be a sign of serious problem that needs medical attention.

      Dermatologists can easily spot a hair loss problem. Blood tests and observing hair and scalp tissue under the microscope can help in accurate diagnosis. It is important to seek an early diagnosis to find the cause of hair loss to decide if the problem of hair loss can respond to a treatment.

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Comments (7)

Thank you for this valuable information. Well done!

very good nisha

Good information on the reasons for hair loss.

Very informative.

Good information for haircare. Thank you Nisha. I always appreciate and thank you for your affectionate friendship and support.

Wow, good article.  Lots more to it than just genetics.  For a long time I've been baffled as to why some people I graduated with were going bald while we were still in high school. 

Well-crafted article!  This information, I'm sure, will be helpful to many.  Thanks for posting here