Unexplained, excessive hair loss can be scary. One minute you’re running your fingers through your beautiful long locks, the next you’re in a pharmacy deciding on which product will stop it all from falling out. There are many types of hair loss with different symptoms and causes - here are 7 sneaky causes to watch out for.
Blame the family! The most common cause of hair loss is male pattern baldness, a genetic condition passed on by both sides of your family. It causes the familiar ‘u-shape’ balding patch on many men. Don’t worry though, there is a treatment. The most effective is a tablet called Finasteride, which stops hair loss in men at an impressive rate - 90% of men who take this prescriptive tablet hold onto their hair!
Unfortunately, there isn’t much you can do about growing older, mother nature will always win that one! Both men and women will experience at least some thinning or hair loss as they get older, with the process typically starting from around age 30, when volume starts to decrease and hair growth slows. These days lots of men choose to embrace their aging hair loss, and a shaved head is an increasingly popular look. The beard has also become a style accessory which can make up for any thinning on top, so throw away the razor, grab yourself some beard oil and let it grow!
That’s right, what you eat (or don’t eat) can genuinely cause hair loss. Just like the rest of your body, your hair needs nutrients to stay healthy and grow. A poor diet, as well as low iron levels and a sudden drop in weight, can lead to hair disappearing - don’t be too alarmed though, as this tends to be temporary. A sneaky cause to be aware of though, so make sure you’re eating a well-balanced diet with all the crucial elements including protein, iron and zinc. Go easy on the pizza.
Contrary to popular belief, stress is actually a fairly uncommon cause of hair loss. That being said, it is still a cause. The hair loss caused by stress (both emotional and physical) is known as telogen effluvium and generally results in thinning rather than fully fledged baldness. The good news is that like diet-related hair loss, hair loss caused by stress can be reversed. The easiest way? Relax! Quit that job! Ditch your soccer team! Try and avoid or escape whatever it is that’s causing you stress - not just for your hair, but your overall wellbeing too.
You cool kids won’t want to hear this, but your style choice could be the sneaky reason behind your hair loss. Many hairstyles actually damage the hair at its roots, making hair loss all the more likely. Typical offenders include man buns, tight ponytails, cornrows, and braids. It’s not just the style either - certain hair products, treatments and excessive use of hair dye can also be damaging and result in hair loss. Be sure to use natural, moisturizing products every once in a while, to keep that scalp healthy.
Often mistaken for dandruff, psoriasis causes an overproduction of skin cells on the scalp which manifest as large white flakes. Psoriasis can often damage the actual hair follicles, which could result in temporary hair loss. This one is really sneaky because it’s often mistaken for a more benign issue. If you suspect psoriasis, speak to your doctor who can prescribe you with special medicated shampoo and other treatments.
7. Seborrhea Dermatitis
Last but definitely not least, this sneaky cause of hair loss can be extremely itchy! Seborrheic Dermatitis is a harmless skin condition occasionally found on the scalp, presenting itself in small red patches. This condition is caused by an inflamed scalp and hair loss can be alarming, with large patches lost unless treated properly. Fortunately, treatment is available, so just like psoriasis, you can speak to your doctor for advice.