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Who hasn’t had a hair loss scare? All of us, at some point, start to fear that we might be losing too much hair. While most of the time it’s just a false alarm, and our hair’s routine shedding, in some cases, it is more than that. But what could be causing the unexpected hair loss?

Most people normally shed 50 to 100 hairs a day. This usually doesn’t cause noticeable thinning of scalp hair because new hair is growing in at the same time. Hair loss occurs when this cycle of hair growth and shedding is disrupted or when the hair follicle is destroyed and replaced with scar tissue.

But what about for women? It’s commonly more accepted — and expected — that men lose their hair. But when women begin to lose theirs, the psychological damage can be just as devastating as any serious disease, taking an emotional toll that can directly affect physical health, says the American Hair Loss Association, a consumer organization dedicated to the prevention and treatment of hair loss.

Possibly. But since they (both) don’t provide miracle results, I wouldn’t recommend it. Why risk losing regrown hair? If you get tired of applying minoxidil twice a day, do it just once per day. It still works.

Yeast lives on the greasy skin — especially the scalp. Some people who get irritated by the yeast develop dandruff. The yeast is also associated with testosterone formation in the hair follicles. Dandruff shampoos kill this yeast and prevent flaky dandruff, reducing the amount of yeast on the scalp, which may reduce testosterone-induced hair loss.

A good daily multivitamin containing zinc, vitamin B, folate, iron, and calcium is a reasonable choice, although there is no good evidence that vitamins have any meaningful benefit in alopecia. Newer studies suggest that vitamin D may be somewhat helpful and worth considering. Specific vitamin and mineral deficiencies like iron or vitamin B12 may be diagnosed by blood tests and treated.

An overwhelming majority of the time the hair is on the scalp, it is growing. Only about 10% of the strands are in transition or resting at any one time. Hair grows about 6 inches a year for most people.

Hair loss is typically more than just an annoying physical problem. For many people experiencing hair loss, the daily suffering is very real and takes a huge toll on them in many ways. Research has shown that hair loss can cause “dramatic and devastating emotions in patients, which can negatively impact their self-esteem, body image, and/or self-confidence.” (18)

We all lose hair. Some hair loss is perfectly normal, as hair falls out after it completes the 2 to 6 year growth phase. You may notice loose hairs that have fallen out on your clothes or in your comb or hairbrush. The average person loses about 50 to 100 hairs per day. This is normal. What is not normal? If your hair starts to fall out in clumps, especially when you brush or comb it or are in the shower, you should see your doctor. If you notice that you can see larger areas of your scalp or that your hair is thinning, see your dermatologist for diagnosis and treatment of your hair loss condition.

The symptoms: Seborrheic dermatitis causes the scalp to shed its skin, so you’ll notice greasy, yellowish scales on your shoulders or in your hair. It may be the result of yeast called Malassezia, hormonal changes, or excess oil in the skin. Psoriasis, an autoimmune condition that causes excessive skin cell turnover, produces a very thick white scale on the scalp that can bleed if pulled off. With ringworm, a fungus you contract by touching an infected person or animal, you’ll notice red patches on your scalp, which may be diffuse, Jakubowicz says.

If you’re shedding more than normal, don’t freak out. Hair loss among women can happen for a variety of reasons­­–it can be a natural consequence of childbirth or overusing hair products. Watch the video to learn why your hair might be thinning.

Gradually, though, I began to notice something disturbing. The two sides of my hair looked like they were slowly drifting away from each other at the part. Granted, it’s hard for me to tell when my hair is thinning. I am half Scandinavian, and nowhere is this more evident than my scalp, which, with its sparse, wispy growth, conjures the snowy white tundras of Lapland.

In February, though, Ms. Telford, 46, flew from her home in London, Ontario, to Sarasota, Fla., for a new $1,400 hourlong treatment known as platelet rich plasma (P.R.P.), which is said to stimulate dormant hair follicles. The procedure involves drawing blood, spinning it in a centrifuge to extract the plasma, adding various nutrients (like more protein), then injecting the resulting mixture in one-inch intervals in a grid on the top of the scalp, which has been numbed with a local anesthetic.

Hair thinning and baldness cause psychological stress due to their effect on appearance. Although societal interest in appearance has a long history, this particular branch of psychology came into its own during the 1960s and has gained momentum as messages associating physical attractiveness with success and happiness grow more prevalent.[9]

This is the only product I’ve found that actually works. I have been using this for 3 months and my hair is full and rich and looks like it did when I was 25. I am 58 years old and the one this I hate about growing older hair problems like thinning. Then when I got an alopecia bald spot I decided to take action. I tried minoxidil but that caused irritation and breakouts. So, I searched for something more on the natural side and I found this and am I happy I did. I DO NOT have the spot anymore. My hair is back to full again. I recommend this to anyone who wants a beautiful, full head of healthy hair.

Laser treatment companies, which claim their devices can reverse shrinking of the follicles, stimulate hair growth and more, are also targeting women with caps and combs. For example, the $895 Theradome, a cap that looks like the top of a bike helmet, has been cleared by the F.D.A. for women. Users wear it for 20 minutes twice a week.

Though we think our hair is super important, our bodies consider it nonessential (read: we don’t need it to stay conscious). Other bodily functions, like breathing, are more pressing and get first access to the nutrients in our diet. Our hair gets the leftovers. Protein is your hair’s best friend, so reach for healthy protein such as eggs and fish and avoid fasting or yoyo dieting. These can deprive your body of these essential building blocks for a healthy scalp and hair. Wild salmon, tuna and trout are packed with omega-3 fatty acids that help provide moisture and prevent dry and brittle hair. Foods rich in B vitamins also help keep hair follicles healthy, decreasing the risk for hair loss. Fruits and vegetables, and beans and lean meat sources, such as chicken or turkey breast, are all great sources for vitamin B.

Of course, the problem with the wise woman’s counsel is that I’ve previously read (and written) about how showering and shampooing too often is also not good for your dreads. Damned if you ‘poo, it seems, damned if you don’t.

Dermatologists treating hair loss look at the level of ferritin in your blood, because they can deduce what your body is doing with all the iron they told you to add to your diet during your initial consultation. If you’d been eating plenty of bok choy— which is super iron rich—they would likely see a spike in your ferritin levels.

There are several options when it comes to conventional treatment of hair loss, all of which come with significant side effects unless you opt for wig or hair piece. The most common conventional hair loss remedies include topical minoxidil, oral finasteride, topical or oral hormones and steroids, hair transplants, and hair restoration surgery. (13)

Emotional stress is less likely to cause hair loss than physical stress, but it can happen, for instance, in the case of divorce, after the death of a loved one, or while caring for an aging parent. More often, though, emotional stress won’t actually precipitate the hair loss. It will exacerbate a problem that’s already there, says Dr. Glashofer.

This can be a very effective way to prevent the formation of dihydrotestosterone, similar to saw palmetto. Dihydrotestosterone comes from testosterone but licorice does not allow the hormone to go through this transition.

Instead of concealing hair loss, some may embrace it by shaving their head. A shaved head will grow stubble in the same manner and at the same rate as a shaved face. The general public has become accepting of the shaved head as well, though female baldness can be considered less socially acceptable in various parts of the world.

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    Hi, do you believe that finasteride is not as effective in older men, say age 55 and over? Data seems to be mixed. Are you still experiencing minor or no sides on the finasteride? Thanks for a very thorough article with unbiased information.
    FDA Certified, clinically studied. In most of the cases people who tried it report thicker, fuller and healthier locks. Pronexa copes with vitamin deficiencies that are usually the cause of hair loss and hair thinning, as it is packed with hair growth vitamins. It provides support to the hair follicle cycle, promotes cell growth. Contains vitamin C, B-1, B-12, B-6, A, D and E, calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, niacin, sodium, zinc, manganese, selenium, iron, iodine, folic acid, pantothenic acid, biotin.
    Zinc seems to be a super nutrient when it comes to preventing and treating hair loss. In one study, researchers compared the zinc levels of 50 people with hair loss due to alopecia areata to 50 healthy controls and found that all of the alopecia patients had significantly lower zinc levels. Another study examined the zinc and copper levels in 312 men and women experiencing hair loss. No matter the cause of the hair loss, all subjects had significantly lower zinc levels than controls.

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