Updated: Mar 4, 2020
Understanding the four major factors for hair loss – and what you can do about it.
From comb overs to hairpieces, humans have been trying to put the kibosh on obvious hair loss for centuries. Androgenic alopecia a.k.a. male pattern baldness (MPB) is the most typical form of men’s hair loss. 95% of men’s hair loss is attributed to MPB. 2/3 of men in America will sustain some loss of hair by the time they turn 35. When they turn 50, about 85% of them will have thinning hair (source: American Hair Loss Association). While the likeliness of experiencing hair loss might seem like an inevitability for most, there are four major factors that influence hair loss – and two of them are more controllable than you may have previously thought.
The search for a hair loss solution frequently starts with the question, "Why am I losing my hair?" It seems logical that if you identify the reason for a problem, you can find a hair loss treatment that works. While this is true sometimes, there are unfortunately issues that have no cure.
1. Genetic Propensity for Hair Growth Problems
We’ll start off with the bad news first: Genetics can play a major role in whether or not you will experience hair loss in the future. While there is absolutely nothing you can do to prevent this factor from influencing your future hairline, it can at least give you a glimpse into your potential future.
Just like your DNA partially defines your height, eye color, and other physical characteristics, it affects baldness and thinning hair, too. While you may have heard that these problems pass through the maternal line, that explanation does not stand up to more in-depth genetic research. Instead, it seems to stem from the changes in testosterone and androgen levels as you age. These are partially determined by genetics on both the X and Y chromosomes you receive from both parents at conception.
2. Combating Stress-Related Hair Loss
It sounds like an old wives tale, but it is true: Stress can play a major role in premature or accelerated hair loss in men and women – and there is a science to back it up. It can either arrest the natural hair regrowth process or make the dormant period come sooner or last longer. This type of loss basically means that your hair does not regrow fast enough to keep up with the accelerated fallout schedule. From Telogen Effluvium (a condition that shuts hair follicles down), Trichotillomania (a condition that causes one to rip hair, eyelashes, and eyebrows out), and Alopecia Areata (when the body’s immune system attacks the hair follicles) – stress can cause minor to major hair loss.
3. Hair Loss from Nutritional Issues - Diet and Hydration.
Proper nutrition can do more than simply keep you looking bathing suit ready all year long – it is the key to promoting your physical and mental health, including your hair. Diets that are deficient in key nutrients, specifically protein, can result in rapid and catastrophic hair loss. Additionally, lack of proper hydration can cause extremely brittle hair that is less likely to hold on to the hair follicles and break.
Everyone should understand that eating a natural diet with plenty of nutrients, vitamins, and minerals helps you maintain or achieve optimum health in all aspects. With poor nutrition comes physical stress on your body that can contribute to everything from thinning hair to male pattern baldness and female pattern baldness. The simplest nutritional instructions to grow a healthy head of hair include getting enough protein, iron, vitamin C to help the iron absorb properly, omega-3 fatty acids, folic acid, and sufficient hydration.
Will eating more chicken and having orange juice every day cure your baldness? No. However, it will allow your body to stay in the proper shape to maximize hair growth as much as other factors in your life allow. Also, health helps to deal with stress.
4. Diagnosed Alopecia Areata
This immune response disorder involves your body's white blood cells attacking hair follicles as if they are foreign bodies. While this is much less common than simple stress or genetic issues, it often results in complete body and head baldness more than any other hair loss risk factor. For people who struggle with alopecia, the possibility of hair tattoos or other cosmetic treatments brings relief from potential embarrassment, bullying, and other issues.
Besides the above mentioned the main reasons for losing your hair, it also happens due to skin conditions like eczema, fungal infections like tinea capitis, and due to side effects from prescription medication like beta-blockers and lithium.
What Can Be Done?
So, what are your options if you’ve reduced your stress, stayed hydrated, and kept up with a balanced diet...only to see your hair continue to fall away? While there are seemingly endless hair care and hair loss options on the market, how does one know what options are legitimate and which are total bologna? While there are over-the-counter drugs and medicated restoration shampoos, they often have concerning chemicals with uncomfortable (and frightening) side effects. Surgery can also be an answer, but the results are not always seamless, and the recovery period can be very uncomfortable.
There is, however, another solution that is non-surgical, non-invasive, and permanent – scalp micropigmentation. Scalp Los Angeles proudly offers hair tattoo for both male and female clients boosting confidence in a simple, quick, and lasting way. Contact Scalp Los Angeles to learn more about hair loss and what options you have to rebuild your self-confidence.