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Scalp biopsy is used when the diagnosis is unsure; a biopsy allows for differing between scarring and nonscarring forms. Hair samples are taken from areas of inflammation, usually around the border of the bald patch.

Minoxidil, the active ingredient in Rogaine, is an over-the-counter medication that can be applied to the hair in liquid or mousse form. The medication works by stimulating the hair follicles and promoting regrowth in as little as six months. If six months seems a little long for results, you can also use a hair-thickening spray in the meantime that coats the existing hair and gives the appearance of a more voluminous mane.

Tinea is the medical word for fungal infection, and capitis means head. Tinea capitis is fungal infection of the scalp that for the most part affects school-age children. Tinea capitis is more common in black African or African-American scalps. This condition is rare in healthy adults. Bald spots usually show broken-off hairs and is accompanied by a dermatitis. Oral antifungals can penetrate the hair roots and cure the infection, after which hair grows back. Sharing hats or combs and brushes may transmit tinea capitis.

Women lose hair on an inherited (genetic) basis, too, but the female pattern tends to be more diffuse, with less likelihood of the crown and frontal hairline being lost. Although some women may notice hair thinning as early as their 20s, the pace of hair loss tends to be gradual, often taking years to become obvious to others. There seems to be a normal physiologic thinning that comes with age and occurs in many women in their early to mid-30s. More women have underlying causes of hair loss than men. These include treatable conditions like anemia and thyroid disease and polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). These conditions are diagnosed by blood tests along with a historical and physical evidence. Although a few studies have suggested that baldness may be inherited through the mother’s family genes, these theories require further testing. Current studies are inconclusive. Although not indicated for female pattern balding, spironolactone (Aldactone) has had some success in treating this condition.

Telogen effluvium — This common form of hair loss happens two to three months after a major body stress, such as a prolonged illness, major surgery or serious infection. It also can happen after a sudden change in hormone levels, especially in women after childbirth. Moderate amounts of hair fall out from all parts of the scalp, and may be noticed on a pillow, in the tub or on a hairbrush. While hair on some parts of scalp may appear thinner, it is rare to see large bald spots.

The truth is, the amount of propylene glycol in hair loss treatments is not likely to cause any real harm and the FDA has given the chemical approval for many uses. But even though it is safe, we wanted to ensure that our top picks would be as comfortable to use as possible. So when Dr. Khadavi told us that “a third of my patients get irritated from minoxidil products because of propylene glycol,” we decided to cut any treatments with it. In any case, it’s the minoxidil that helps curb hair loss and not the propylene glycol.

In the 1980’s, Rogaine was the first brand to patent topical minoxidil as a hair regrowth treatment. After their patent expired in the 90’s, many new generic minoxidil brands began appearing on the market, finally plummeting the price down. Rogaine is a ‘well-tried’ and trusted minoxidil brand.

Cut down on dyes and chemicals. Frequent use of hair colouring chemicals increases the chances of serious damage being done to your hair. Never colour your hair more often than every four to six weeks. When it comes to going gray, it’s a lot kinder to your hair to let it turn grey than to dye it.

A recent study found that a supplement containing cistanche tubulosa (a desert plant used in traditional Chinese medicine) and laminaria japonica (an edible brown seaweed) promoted hair growth in people with mild to moderate hair loss. After 16 weeks of supplementation, volunteers saw a 13% increase in hair volume and a 27% increase in hair thickness. The supplement was also effective at treating scalp inflammation and dandruff.

What you can do: Eat iron-rich foods such as beef, pork, fish, leafy greens, fortified cereals, and beans—preferably, along with foods rich in vitamin C, which enhances iron absorption. Women need 18 mg of iron a day, 8 mg after menopause; ask your doctor if you should take an iron supplement. You can also find supplements specifically for hair loss, Dr. Fusco says. Key ingredients may include biotin, silica, and L-cysteine, in addition to iron.

Telogen effluvium – general shedding from all over the head. We typically lose some 100 hairs a day but sometimes shedding accelerates due to stress, illness, medication or hormones. Hair generally grows back within six months.

There can be several factors behind hair loss such as environmental effects, aging, too much stress, excessive smoking, nutritional deficiencies, hormonal imbalance, genetic factors, scalp infections, use of wrong or chemically enriched hair products, certain medicines and medical conditions like thyroid disorder, autoimmune diseases, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), iron-deficiency anemia, and chronic illnesses.

Jump up ^ Nnoruka E, Nnoruka N (October 2005). Hair loss: is there a relationship with hair care practices in Nigeria?. Int J Dermatol. 44 (Suppl 1): 13–7. doi:10.1111/j.1365-4632.2005.02801.x. PMID 16187950.

Most of us, when we think of hair loss, think about aging men. Nearly all men eventually get that receding M-shaped hairline and thinning hair on the top of the head, also known as male pattern baldness. It’s called androgenetic alopecia, and it’s caused by a by-product of testosterone called DHT.

Such basic health screening can be done by a family physician, internist, or gynecologist. Dermatologists are doctors who specialize in problems of skin, hair, and nails and may provide more advanced diagnosis and treatment of hair thinning and loss. Sometimes a scalp biopsy may be necessary.

Vitamin A: Vitamin A is an antioxidant, which promotes healthy production of sebum in the scalp. Sweet Potatoes are loaded with beta carotene – rich in Vit A not only promotes a healthy scalp but promotes hair growth.

Vitamin A: Too much vitamin A can cause hair loss. People can get too much of this vitamin through vitamin supplements or medicines. Once the body stops getting too much vitamin A, normal hair growth resumes.

The dermatologist also will carefully look at your scalp and hair. During an exam, the dermatologist may pull on your hair. Sometimes a dermatologist needs to pull out a hair to get the necessary evidence. And sometimes a dermatologist needs to look at the hair on the rest of your body to see whether there is too little or too much hair in other areas.

Curry leaves are rich in vitamins, anti-oxidants, proteins and minerals which prevent hair loss. Amino acids present in curry leaves strengthen hair follicles and promote hair growth. Curry leaves help to retain the luster and color of the hair.

Contrary to popular belief, hair extensions may not be among good solutions for thinning hair if you are experiencing hair loss. Rooted, naturally thin hair is fine, but those experiencing scalp exposure are not usually good candidates. However, if your hair is full at the crown but thinning only from the ear line downward, extensions are definitely an option. Celebrity hairstylist Ken Paves says that clip-ins are best and most affordable. And best of all, they are surprisingly simple to use.

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