Understanding hair loss

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Myth or fact? The truth about hair loss

If you are wondering what is truth and what is fiction when it comes to hair loss, then it is time to stop the guessing game, take action and get good information! Van Scoy Hair Clinic in Ohio has been helping men and women who are dealing with hair loss since 1969. They can help you find the answers and solutions you are looking for. […]

2017-07-11T10:30:20+00:00 By |

Ways to Help Kids Overcome Trichotillomania

If you are the parent of a child suffering from trichotillomania, you might feel confused, embarrassed or even scared.  It seems like such a bizarre bodily disorder, but truthfully, this may not be the case. A possible reaction to stressful circumstances, Trichotillomania (trick-o-til-o-MAY-nee-ah) is a disorder that causes people to want to pull out their own hair.  The following are a few tips that might help you manage your child’s Trichotillomania. Be More Aware First and foremost, it is important to understand as a parent that trichotillomania is not as uncommon as you might think.  Time magazine reports that trichotillomania currently affects about two million Americans.  The stressful adolescence phase is a common time for symptoms to start showing, where a majority start at age 12.  It is also important to understand that the act of pulling out hair can feel good to your child and bring them instant gratification.  Unconditional love and support is needed to help your child through this tough time. Communicate Openly If you find talking about the condition with your child or young adult difficult, you might want to try talking with support groups with kids near their age.  If you cannot find a support group in your area, be sure to check online for support forums. Celebrity Role Models If a child knows that successful celebrities such as Charlize Theron, Megan Fox and Olivia Munn also suffer from trichotillomania, it might help them not feel so alone.  Even the likes of Justin Timberlake and Leonardo di Caprio have stated that they have OCD, which can cause trichotillomania as a symptom.  The point is that this disorder can happen to even the best of us, but it is in no [...]

2017-07-11T10:30:24+00:00 By |

A Look at Alopecia Areata, the Spot Baldness

Alopecia Areata is frequently referred to as “spot baldness”, a term that reflects its unique pattern of onset. Where Male Pattern Baldness primarily affects the hairline and crown, and Female Pattern Baldness primarily affects the part, Alopecia Areata is characterized by sudden and somewhat random hair loss in varying and irregular patches on the scalp. The onset of the condition, which is seen in both males and females, often begins sometime between late childhood and early adulthood, though it is not abnormal for Alopecia Areata to exist in very young children or start later in life. Nearly 6.5 million people in the United States alone live with Alopecia Areata; that is 2% of the population! The condition itself can be confusing though. Earlier this year, we discussed the many faces of alopecia, noting that the umbrella of alopecias includes a number of different types of hair loss. Alopecia Areata is unique in that this specific term refers to hair loss caused by an autoimmune disorder and, as mentioned above, causes distinct patches or spots of baldness. In an autoimmune disorder, an individual’s immune system confuses some of its healthy body tissues for unhealthy and unwanted outside materials such as bacteria, viruses, or toxins. It then tries to protect the body by ridding it of what it understands to be intruders by attacking them. Unfortunately, in this scenario, the tissues being attacked are actually healthy hair follicles. Research continues on autoimmune susceptibility as well as why an immune system suddenly views healthy tissues as external intruders, and while records are growing to aid in the understanding of the genetic underpinnings of Alopecia Areata and hopeful progress is being made towards prescription drug applications, definitive answers to [...]

2017-07-11T10:30:25+00:00 By |

Coping with Female Pattern Baldness and other Hair Loss in Women

When most people think hair loss, they think of a man with a receding hairline.  However, hair loss is common in women too.  Up to 40 percent of women in America suffer from hair loss of any type.  Most of the 40 percent experience hair loss in their 50s and 60s, but women of any age can suffer from hair loss.  Men are usually comfortable with hair loss, but this is not the case for women.  If you have experienced or are experiencing hair loss, don’t worry; there are many steps you can take to help fight the devastating effects. Hair Loss:  The Signs When faced with the issue of hair loss, the first step in coping is to better understand what’s really happening.  Hair loss can range from mild tinning that isn’t really noticeable, to full clumps of hair falling out to create large bald areas on the scalp.  The following are signs noticed by women experiencing hair loss: More hair on their pillow Excess hair coming out while combing Increase in visibility of scalp Parts in hair appearing much wider Different Types of Hair Loss Once it is understood that hair loss is occurring, the next step is identifying the different types.  Any disruption in hair growth can be caused by many things, such as hormonal changes and medications to stress and illness.  Alopecia, also known as female pattern baldness, is one of the most common types of hair loss, making up about 50 percent of hair loss in American women.  The following are other common types of hair loss in women: Anagen Effluvium:  representing 90 percent of hair loss caused by chemotherapy Androgenic Alopecia:  hair thinning caused by birth control pills, hormones [...]

2017-07-11T10:30:25+00:00 By |

The Urge to Pull: Trichotillomania

Most people agree that having hair pulled out is a very unpleasant feeling. For someone with trichotillomania, though, pulling hair out feels good -- and may help the person deal with stress and anxiety. Trichotillomania is one of the more unusual hair loss diseases. What causes this hair loss disorder, and can it be cured? What Is Trichotillomania? Trichotillomania (TTM) is a disorder that causes a person to have an overwhelming urge to pull out their own hair. Symptoms of trichotillomania include: noticeable hair loss increased tension right before pulling out hair, or when trying to resist pulling pleasure or relief when hair is pulled As long as hair pulling is not caused by another health issue, and it causes the puller enough problems to interfere with daily life, it can be classified as trichotillomania. TTM is closely related to obsessive-compulsive disorder. The International OCD Foundation sheds light on the difference between the two: OCD sufferers have repetitive behaviors that distract from bad feelings but do not bring pleasure. TTM sufferers get pleasure or relief from pulling hair. Scientists do not know the cause of TTM. Symptoms of TTM increase when the body encounters stress. Interestingly, this stress can be either negative stress (e.g., money problems) or positive stress (e.g., planning a trip). The brain does not differentiate between the signals, so both types of stress can increase the desire to pull hair. What Are Complications of TTM? On an emotional level, the sufferer may experience tremendous stress and shame because of their behavior. This can prevent them from going to work, engaging in social activities or pursuing higher education. Physically speaking, one of the worst complications occurs when a person eats the hair they pull. Strands of hair can build up in the intestines and cause painful, even life-threatening blockages, which may require surgery. Can Trichotillomania be Cured? There are several treatments for TTM. Different methods may work for some and not [...]

2017-07-11T10:30:25+00:00 By |

Hair Loss Myths: Fact or Fiction

Many people facing hair loss are well informed on the ins and outs of their specific condition. They might have heard that at least half of all men will have experience some degree of hair loss by the age of 50, or that 40 percent of hair loss victims are women, or even that the leading cause of hair loss is hereditary patterns. Although those are all true statements, there are some fictitious statements that get passed around which help the hair loss industry along. The real trouble is trying to decipher between fact and fiction. Is it really your mom’s side of the family to blame for your hair loss? Can wearing a baseball hat actually make you go bald? The following are a few of the most common myths about hair loss, fact or fiction: Hair Loss comes from the mother’s side Fiction! Contrary to what people say, it is not your mom’s side to blame for your hair loss. Although male pattern baldness is hereditary, it has been proven that the condition could just as easily come from the father’s side as well. Since this condition is genetic, it cannot be prevented, but it can be treated. Baseball Caps Cause Baldness This one is actually fiction to. Health experts have not found any sort of specific link between hair loss and wearing a cap. Only hats that are tight enough to cut off circulation to the follicles would cause hair loss. Poor Treatment of Hair, Causes Hair Loss Fact! Using too much styling product like dyes and perms can cause hair loss. It is also stated that tight buns and braids can cause hair loss through follicle damage, so be sure to [...]

2016-03-03T13:50:28+00:00 By |

5 Stages of Hair Loss Grief

When we experience a major loss, grief is a perfectly normal process that we undergo. The grief process is complex and circular. Unlike many descriptions of the grief process having a beginning and end, with several parts in the middle, the process is not always linear. Grieving includes psychological, emotional, and physical reactions that have an impact on individuals, friends, and family. Read below to learn about some of the common phases that individuals move through as they grieve. The death of a loved one is not the only cause for grief. Any major change can incite feelings of denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. If you have recently begun losing your hair, you might be feeling any one of these emotions or a combination. It is likely that individuals at any stage of the hair loss process will grieve their previous life. Even though your hair loss may not be permanent, you may miss the time before your hair loss began. Denial- "I feel fine."; "This can't be happening, not to me." Denial is usually a temporary defense for an individual. When you first begin losing hair or notice your thinning hair, you may not believe it is happening. In fact, you may convince others that you are not losing your hair. Anger- "Why me? It's not fair!"; "How can this happen to me?"; '"Who is to blame?" Anger is sometimes an emotion that follows denial. Once you’ve acknowledge that hair loss is something that is happening in your life you might become enraged. It doesn’t seem fair that you have to undergo this difficult burden while others do not. Bargaining- "I'll do anything."; "I will give my life savings if..." This stage involves [...]

2017-07-11T10:30:29+00:00 By |

Hair Loss In Women

It is a widely accepted misconception that hair thinning and balding are problems that are unique to the male gender. Though still not desirable, there is an expectation of sorts that hair loss comes with age for men, but not for women. In actuality, hair loss does not discriminate and a notably high percentage of women will experience some degree of thinning or balding during the course of their lifetime. The single largest cause of hair loss in women has hereditary origins and is known as Female Pattern Hair Loss (FPHL). This type of loss is usually identified by thinning along the part rather than the thinning at the hairline that is frequent in its male counterpart, Male Pattern Hair Loss. The degree of a woman’s hair loss with FPHL is measured using the Savin Scale. According to a 2013 study conducted by the Department of Dermatology and Cutaneous Surgery at the University of Miami, some 21 million women in the United States alone are suffering from FPHL with 12% of women seeing signs by the time they are 30 and upwards of 30-40% of women dealing with FPHL in their 60s. These numbers are astounding when one considers how little female hair loss is discussed and acknowledged in today’s society! In addition to FPHL, hair loss in women can also be attributed to a number of other causes including hormonal changes such as postpartum, birth control, or menopausal hair loss, extreme stress, regular overstyling, medications including, but not limited to, chemotherapy, underlying medical conditions such as hyperthyroidism or lupus, other known hair loss conditions, such as alopecia areata and trichotillomania, and the list goes on and on. It can seem a bit daunting to [...]

2017-07-11T10:30:30+00:00 By |

NIH Interactive Alopecia Tuturial

The National Institute of Health offers a wealth of materials for patients and their families through their Medline Plus website, a source of information on a variety of health and wellness topics produced by the National Library of Medicine (NLM) and presented in a straightforward, easy-to-understand format. Dr. Donald A.B. Lindberg, NLM Director, says of the site, “[It is] a goldmine of good health information from the world’s largest medical library.” With such extensive knowledge and wealth of materials, the simplification of each topic into bite-sized pieces for easy learning and legitimate understanding is really quite impressive. In addition to many other features, Medline Plus offers 157 interactive health tutorials from the Patient Education Institute. Their Alopecia X-Plain Tutorial is approximately 9 minutes long and shares information on hair anatomy, hair loss types and causes, and possible treatments through a series of 47 slides. It is not a substitute for professional medical or hair restoration advice, but it is a great place to start for anyone interested in a basic understanding of the medical approach to the hair condition. Click here to check it out on the NIH website and start learning more today!

2017-07-11T10:30:30+00:00 By |

The Hair Growth Cycle and Telogen Effluvium

Hair growth is cyclical. Throughout an individual’s life, the hairs all over their body are going through a long growth phase followed by a brief transition phase and then an intermediate resting phase before the specific hair is shed and a new one begins its long growth phase in the first one’s place. Growth, transition, rest, shed. Growth, transition, rest, shed. This pattern, which varies in exact duration from one person to the next and one body area to the next, is most frequently discussed in terms of its three main phases, the anagen phase, the catagen phase, and the telogen phase. The anagen phase, or growth phase, can last anywhere from 2 to 6 years for scalp hairs. During this time, the follicle’s cells in the root are dividing, receiving nutrients that fuel growth from the bloodstream that are delivered via the papilla. Scalp hairs in the anagen phase grow on average about 6 inches per year. Hairs on other parts of the body, such as eyebrows or arm hairs, have a much shorter anagen phase, and thus, are shorter hairs than those on the scalp. The catagen phase, or transition phase, is the shortest of the three, lasting only a few weeks for scalp hairs. During this time, the hair moves (or transitions) from active growth to a resting state. The mechanism through which this is achieved involves the root attaching to the shaft and detaching from the papilla, cutting the hair off from its source of nutrients. The telogen phase, or resting phase, typically lasts about 2 to 3 months for scalp hairs. During this time, the non-growing, detached hair is referred to as a club hair. It is essentially dormant until [...]

2017-07-11T10:30:30+00:00 By |