Hair loss can often be a traumatic experience leading to depression and low self-esteem among women. But are you aware of the types of hair loss, their causes and treatment options? Here’s a guide to different types of hair loss and how to treat them.
Types of hair loss
Androgenetic Alopecia: This is by far the most common type of hair loss suffered by both men and women due to genes and hormones. This genetic hair loss is hereditary and can be inherited from either from the mother or father’s side of the family. Commonly known as male and female pattern baldness, this type of hair loss is due to the action of a hormone known as dihydrotestosterone (DHT) which attacks the hair follicles and causes miniaturisation leading to permanent hair loss.
Telogen Effluvium: This condition is also referred to as diffuse hair loss. In this type of hair loss, a lot of hair fall occurs in a short span of time. The causes can be pregnancy, chemotherapy for cancer treatment, very high fever, severe illnesses, and sometimes even high levels of stress. This is not a permanent condition and most of the lost hair does grow back within a few months. Some sudden events that can contribute to this condition are childbirth, surgery, and severe emotional stress (death of loved ones, abuse, accidents, or other traumatic events.)
Alopecia Areata: Any sudden loss of hair resulting in bald patches is the condition of Alopecia Areata. This is an autoimmune disease where the hair follicles are attacked by the body. The reason as to why it happens has not yet been discovered. It can be a mild case and result in bald patches on the head or if it is severe it can affect the hair on the other parts of the body. This condition usually treats itself without any medication, although some doctors may prescribe certain steroid injections for repeated occurrence of localised Alopecia Areata.
Traction Alopecia: This type of hair loss occurs in people who routinely pull on their hair through harsh brushing or hairstyles such as a tight ponytail. Traction Alopecia can be found in Sikhs who wear a turban.
Other causes of hair loss: Other than the above mentioned causes, another common cause of hairloss is poor dietary habits. Lack of adequate nutrition due to crash dieting can lead to significant hairloss. Injury and certain skin diseases can also lead to permanent hair loss.
Hair loss treatments (FDA approved medication)
Minoxidil: Available as liquid or foam, it has to be rubbed on the scalp twice daily to grow hair and prevent hair loss. It takes around 12 weeks for new hair to start growing.
Finasteride: It is a prescribed medicine to treat male pattern baldness and has to be taken orally. Patients may experience slowing of hair loss and sometimes new growth. Rare side effects can be diminished by sex drive and sexual function. It should be avoided by women of child bearing age.
Hair transplant: This is the most effective way to treat the male pattern baldness or Androgenetic Alopecia where follicles are removed from the back portion of the scalp and transplanted in the hairloss areas. Earlier the process involved multiple session scars and stitches, but with the latest technique like Maximus Fue density, it can be restored in single session without cuts, pain or even scars.
Source : idiva.com