All you need to know about hair loss

Excessive hair loss can be very depressing. But you can overcome this. Read this article to find out the causes, types, symptoms and diagnosis of hair loss.

It is quite normal and a usual part of the hair growth cycle to lose a few hairs everyday. In some people, the hair falls out and grows back with time. However, hormonal disbalance, certain diseases and medications can affect your hair growth cycle. 

In this article, we will discuss the types, causes, symptoms and diagnosis of hair loss. 

 What is Hair loss?

People generally lose 50 to 100 hair strands everyday and new hair strands grow back with time, which is a normal part of the hair growth cycle. When a person sheds more hair and barely any new hair grows in, this situation is called hair loss. Although hair loss generally develops gradually as people age, it can affect people of all ages. There are many types of hair loss which may cause hair fall all over the body. 

How common is hair loss? 

Hair loss is an extremely common issue these days. Among all the types of hair loss, androgenic alopecia (Male and female pattern baldness) is the most common type of hair fall. Around 10 million people in India are affected with this condition.    

What are the types of hair loss? 

There are a few types of hair loss, some are permanent and some are temporary. The common types of hair loss are: 

  • Androgenic alopecia: Androgenic alopecia is known as female or male pattern baldness, which is a genetic condition. With this condition, males shed hair from the temples and crown part of the head, while females shed hair from all over the head. 
  • Alopecia areata: This is an autoimmune disease in which the immune system attacks the hair follicles that contribute to hair fall of head and all over the body. This condition can cause bald patches, which can get worse without proper treatment. 
  • Telogen effluvium: This type of hair loss can cause sudden and rapid hair fall in a short period of time. Telogen effluvium may occur if you are going through physical or emotional stress. Malnutrition, PCOS, thyroid diseases, endocrine diseases, childbirth, postpartum, menopause, surgery, and depression can cause this rapid hair fall. 
  • Anagen effluvium: Anagen effluvium is a temporary condition that causes rapid hair loss, which mainly happens if you are going through radiation or chemotherapy. As this is a temporary condition, new hair may grow back after the treatment is over. 

What are the symptoms of hair loss conditions?   

Some people may experience hair loss differently, and it depends on the type of the hair loss. The familiar symptoms are: 

  • Thinning of the hair (Female pattern hair loss)
  • Baldness on the crown and temple area (Male pattern baldness)
  • Bald patches on the head
  • Loss of hair on eyelashes, eyebrows, and all over the body

What are the causes of hair loss? 

Some possible causes of hair loss may include: 

  • Hereditary Hair loss
  • Fungal infections on the scalp
  • Stress on hair due to hair styles (ponytails, tight buns, and braids)  
  • Hair styling products that cause damage to the hair follicles
  • Thyroid and endocrine diseases 
  • Hormonal changes due to pregnancy, childbirth and menopause
  • Medical treatments (radiation, chemotherapy)
  • Medicines (Cholesterol lowering drugs, birth control pills, blood thinners and antidepressants)
  • Nutritional deficiency (Having a diet that is low in protein, vitamin and iron)
  • Physical and mental stress (surgery and mental disorders)

How is hair loss diagnosed? 

To diagnose a hair loss condition, your doctor would suggest a hair fall test. To rule out the exact cause of the hair fall, your doctor might: 

  • Ask you about your family history of hair loss 
  • Study your medical history
  • Prescribe blood tests to examine your thyroid functions and iron levels
  • Look at your scalp to see if there is any fungal infection
  • Run a scalp biopsy

A blood test for hair loss is an extremely important step in order to find out the exact cause of your hair fall. A hair loss test will help the doctors to find out the best treatment for your hair loss. Depending on the cause, your doctor may suggest the best treatment plan for you. Thyrocare Bangalore and Thyrocare Hyderabad offer the best hair fall test packages, and you can avail the free home sample collection as well. 

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