Maintaining A Healthy Diet
How and what we eat can have a big impact on our entire body, including our hair. By eating a healthful, well-balanced diet, you can promote hair growth and prevent future loss.
Getting plenty of vitamins and nutrients is key to maintaining a balanced diet. Eating foods rich in essential vitamins or taking supplements can help you get your daily dose of hair-healthy nutrients, such as:
Along with eating well, its important to drink plenty of that sweet, sweet H2O. Your body thrives when its hydrated, so drinking enough water each day can keep your cells in tip-top shape for peak performance.
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Hair Follicles In 3 Stages
Hair follicles go through 3 different stages throughout a persons lifetime. The first stage is anagen, the growth phase where follicles continue to push through a hair shaft. The next stage is called catagen, where hair growth stops and shrinkage occurs in the lower part, with the hair remaining in place. Lastly, hair reaches the telogen stage, a resting period where the hair follicle stem cell becomes inactive, which can lead to it falling out.
Researchers found that hairs in mice experiencing stress remain in the telogen phase for only 20 days. This is 3 times less than mice who are producing normal levels of corticosterone. They also found that follicles engaged with hair growth 3 times as often too.
After placing the GAS5 protein in the mice, normal levels of hair growth returned. It suggested that restoring the protein could encourage regeneration of growth in hair follicle stem cells that were not producing.
The Effect Of Stress On The Hair Can Be Categorized By The Following Three Conditions:
- Telogen effluvium: Significant levels of stress causes a large number of hair follicles to abnormally transition into a resting phase of the hair growth cycle. Within a couple of months, affected hairs might fall out suddenly even by simply washing or combing the hair. It takes around 6 to 9 months for these hairs to grow back. This condition is less severe and more common. Rarely, it can have a longer-term effect.
- Alopecia areata: One of the causes believed to cause Alopecia areata is stress. This medical condition causes the bodys immune system to attack hair follicles causing the hair to fall out. Typically the hair falls out within weeks and usually in small patches. It can involve the entire scalp, called Alopecia Totalis. If the hair loss involves the entire body, it is called Alopecia Universalis . AU is a medical condition involving the loss of all body hair, including eyebrows, eyelashes, chest hair, armpit hair, and pubic hair.
- Trichotillomania: Hair pulling can be a behavioral response to negative or uncomfortable feelings such as stress, anxiety, loneliness, and frustration. It is described as an irresistible urge to pull out hair from your scalp, eyebrows, or other areas of the body. Unfortunately, pulling the hair out may result in a permanent loss of hair.
Can Stress Cause Hair Loss Whats The Connection
Can stress lead to hair loss? Yes, studies suggest that stress does impact hair follicles, causing hair to fall out. Factors like physical and emotional stress, injury, and anxiety can trigger hair loss. Incidents like accidents, hospitalization, infection, financial burdens, debt, death of a loved one, work-related issues, etc., are significant contributors to stress.
Fortunately, stress-related hair loss is usually temporary, lasting only for three to six months before your normal hair cycle resumes.
How Do You Treat Hair Loss From Stress
If you experience stress-related hair loss, theres every chance it will grow back to its former glory. The first thing to work on is getting your stress levels under control. Be kind to yourself and work on improving your diet and overall health.
Hair loss due to stress is completely curable. Talk to your doctor for extra support and advice on minimising stress levels and re-growing your hair safely.
Some simple ways to treat hair loss from stress are
- Aim to get 7-8 hours sleep a night
- Eat a clean diet filled with fresh veg, fruit, lean protein and whole grains
- Start a regular exercise routine
- Minimise sugar, caffeine and alcohol intake
- Practice meditation, mindfulness and yoga
- Take a break from work or from a stressful environment
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Why Does Stress Lead To Hair Loss
While we frequently consider stress a psychological problem, it can also have physical effects. If you’ve ever gone through a time of intense pressure, you know that it can result in many symptoms, such as difficulty sleeping, muscle tension, heartburn, and headaches.
The “fight, flight, or freeze” reaction of the body is linked to stress symptoms. This is a coping mechanism for tense or potentially harmful circumstances. Stress hormones are released by our body, supporting us in this circumstance.
However, if the stress is persistent , our bodies may produce too many stress chemicals. It may harm your body and contribute to hair loss.
Why Does Hair Fall Out In July
Hair loss is one of the most common problem that people experience during monsoon. Humidity during the monsoon can make your scalp oily. This makes you go for a head bath more than usual, which can rob your hair off its moisture. This in turn gives you dull hair, dandruff and hair fall.
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How Does Stress Cause Hair Loss
Stress-related hair loss is technically called telogen effluvium . At any given time, all of the hair in your body is in one of three phases: anagen , catagen , and telogen . During the telogen phase, the old hair is pushed out to make room for new hair it’s a normal type of hair shedding . Telogen effluvium occurs when physical or emotional trauma to the body forces an abnormally large amount of hair into the telogen or resting phase, explains Gaunitz. “Normally, only about 10% of hair is in the resting phase, but TE can force up to a third of all of your hair into this phase, resulting in a massive dumping or shedding of the hair,” he says.
As mentioned, the inciting trauma or stress can be either physical, emotional, or both. But we’re not necessarily talking about day-to-day, chronic types of stress. Rather, it’s most often a singular, stressful event that’s the culprit. Common examples include illness, surgery, break-ups, deaths, and even childbirth, points out Bhanusali.
The 15 Best Shampoos For Hair Loss Female Products
Need a new wash, rinse and repeat routine to mend thinning hair? Check out these ten best-selling shampoos for mitigating hair loss.
What is the best shampoo for thinning hair in women? Lets take a closer look.
The thickening hair treatment line for women that DS Laboratories makes is the real deal. They have recognized the data showing that women deal with hair loss and thinning and have decided to do something about it. This shampoo product is designed for both men and womens hair loss. Featuring ketoconazole, an ingredient known to aid against many types of hair loss and ingredients like biotin, caffeine, and ginseng to stimulate the scalp, this shampoo encourages hair growth and will likely lead to more volume. Try it with their conditioner and other products, such as Spectral.DNC-N for the best results.
Lipogaine is a trusted brand in the hair loss prevention space and they make some of the top shampoo and minoxidil products. Their Big 3 Shampoo is their best-selling shampoo designed for both women and men. It is recommended to use it 3 to 4 times a week because it contains the key active ingredient ketoconazole.
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Hair Shedding Or Hair Loss: How Much Is Too Much
Turns out, our hair wasnt meant to stay on our scalp forever. For men, hair loss patterns follow certain patterns. For women, hair loss can occur on the scalp in all regions. Hair follicles have a natural life span in men that in certain regions of the scalp are genetically predisposed. It is normal to shed between 50 and 100 hairs a day. Heres why:
The growth cycle of hair is divided into anagen, catagen, and telogen phases. On average a single hair grows in the skin and scalp for 4 to 7 years in the anagen growth phase. It then follows the hair cycle into the catagen or death phase, followed by a transition into the telogen resting phase. Once the hair shaft is shed in the telogen phase, the follicle that remains in the scalp and skin and cycles back to the growth phase in 4- 6 months as shown in this illustration.
Another factor is hair care. Washing, combing, blow-drying, and styling your hair can all cause hair in the telogen phase of hair growth to shed, but this should not be confused with hair loss. The loss of hair to shedding is not the same as a medical hair loss condition like androgenetic alopecia.
How To Prevent Hair Loss Due To Stress
There is no way to prevent cancer-related hair loss caused by chemotherapy, radiation, or cancer treatment. Its important to keep perspective. Remember that although hair loss is a side effect of chemotherapy, its vital to your health and recovery to work closely with your oncologist and medical team to choose the safest healing path. Fortunately, cancer-related hair loss is temporary, and there are things you can do to help you transition and adjust to your bodys natural reaction to cancer-related Alopecia.
The most effective way to minimize alopecia due to stress is to take a comprehensive and holistic approach.
Seek guidance from a medical professional. Seek counsel from a therapist or psychological support team. Identify stress triggers and eliminate the ones you can, and incorporate ways to better manage the one you cant.
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Myths Associated With Stress Hair Loss
Misunderstanding your hair problems can be dangerous, so lets dispel the most common myths about stress hair loss.
- It appears immediately. Stress hair loss takes anywhere from 6-12 weeks to appear, based on hair growth cycles. Your hair goes into a resting stage to protect itself when under stressful situations, as most studies suggest. Once your hair cycle returns to normal, it pushes the hair out to grow new strands. It is possible for hair loss to appear up to three months after that stressful event.
- Minor stress can cause hair loss. A stressful event can be physical like surgery or trauma. It can be emotional, like a divorce or loss of a job. Stress can also be hormonal, like switching birth control or recently having a baby. Anxiety hair loss doesnt usually happen because you are stressed about your morning commute.
- Any hair loss is stress-related. Stress does not equate balding. Just because you see your hairbrush covered in day-old hair or you are sweeping up more hair than usual these days does not mean it is stress-related. It may be damaged hair breaking off. Make sure you are not damaging your hair if you want to maintain thickness.
Photo Credit: Unsplash
How To Relieve Stress
You can’t always prevent stress from occurring in your life, but you can often minimize the amount of stress you experience, and when you cut down on stress in some areas, you have more energy to manage the stress that can’t be avoided. These techniques can help you cut out stress in your life when possible.
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How Can I Treat Stress
Roughly 10% to 15% of your hair strands are in the telogen phase at any given time, where theyre preparing to fall out, says Dr. Landriscina. Unfortunately, once those hairs are lost, theyre gone. But that doesnt mean new strands wont grow back in. Both dermatologists recommend minoxidil, a vasodilator that improves circulation around the hair bulb at the base of the hair follicle, and one of the few FDA-approved remedies for hair growth.
Most people are cleansing, conditioning, and using an after treatment on their hair, so its easy to swap out what youre using, says Dr. Henry. Unlike other minoxidil products, Nioxin looks at hair as a whole, she says, keeping strands healthy, moisturized, and strong while addressing the scalp and getting rid of dirt and debris that could make hair loss worse.
I actually used Nioxin products at my local salon after my hairstylist also recommended the brand she noticed about four years ago that I had mild hair thinning around my temples . Ive used it at the salon several more times since then, and my hair has grown back noticeablythough I dont know if it was because of the Nioxin products or my own better hair care habits.
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Can Ptsd Make Your Hair Fall Out
Those with PTSD will find that their stress hormones never return to normal levels and that their bodies choose to conserve energy and nutrients for essential functions of the body, preventing hair from regrowing once it is shed.
Those with PTSD suffer from being stuck in a fight-or-flight mode permanently, where loud noises or sudden changes in lighting can cause them to panic or become extremely distressed.
The effects of existing in fight-or-flight mode do not just affect their behaviour, but also the internal hormonal levels in the body. If the body is stuck in fight-or-flight, it will choose to preserve any nutrients for essential core functions of the body. As the hair is deemed non-essential, hair follicles do not get the nutrients they need to produce hair follicles. This means the hair will shed without being replaced, ultimately causing hair loss.
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How Does Hair Grow
Your hair grows out of little pockets in your skin called follicles. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, you have around five million hair follicles on your body, with roughly 100,000 located on your scalp. Yea, lots of hair factories.
At the bottom of the follicle is your hair root, which consists of living cells that grow and form the base of the hair shaft. As the hair shaft continues to add cells at its base, the shaft passes a protective oil gland and eventually pokes out through the skin.
The hair shaft itself is technically dead cells at this point, which is why getting a haircut doesnt hurt, unlike the pain involved in getting a hair pulled out by its root.
The growth cycle of hair consists of three phases: anagen , catagen , and telogen . In simpler terms, your hair will grow, stop growing, then fall out. The overwhelming majority of hair follicles on your scalp are in the anagen phase, with only around 8% in the final telogen phase.
For the other parts of your body, the process is exactly the same, however the total cycle lasts only 30 to 45 days. This is why hair on your body will be much shorter than hair on the scalp, even if left unattended.
If youve experienced hair loss, your growth cycle has likely been disturbed. What caused this disturbance will dictate how quickly you can regrow your hair, and if youre able to at all.
Can Heartbreak Cause Hair Loss
Heartbreak is the most common cause of hair loss due to emotional stress or trauma. It can last for as long as the heartbreak goes on for, plus an additional 7 or 8 months for the hair to grow back properly.
This is because the emotional stress the heartbreak will shift hair follicles into the resting phase too quickly, preventing them from growing properly. The hair then moves into the shedding phase and starts again. However, if the emotional trauma is not addressed, the cycle happens again before the hair can grow properly.
Once the emotional stress has been resolved or is being resolved, the hair can start to regrow. However, this can take roughly 7 to 8 months, as all the hair that was pushed into the resting phase early needs to shed before it can regrow.
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What Exactly Is Stress
Stress is a normal psychological human reaction that occurs when you experience emotional or physicial changes during the challenges of everyday. These external stress-causing factors are so-called stressors. Your body reacts to these stressors by releasing hormones that make your brain more alert, tense your muscles and increase your pulse. These physiological stress responses are not negative by themselves.
It turns out acute stress is your bodys way of protecting itself and can be very positive in certain situations. For example, if you have an important test coming up, stress can actually help your body work harder by entering its fight-or-flight response.
Long-term stress that lasts for weeks or even months has an impact on the physical, emotional, and behavioral well-being of human beings. Stress becomes problematic when there is no relief from the stress. Long-term stress also negatively impacts the immune system and the neurotransmitters, i.e., dopamine, gamma-aminobutyric acid , norepinephrine, and serotonin. These neurotransmitters are linked to mood and anxiety. Neurotransmitters work with receptors in the brain to influence and regulate a wide range of processes such as mental performance, emotions, pain response, and energy levels. Numerous clinical studies have shown that inadequate neurotransmitter function has a profound influence on overall health and well-being.