CAUSES OF HAIR LOSS IN MEN

Most causes of hair loss in men can be attributed to one of the following reasons:

  • Male pattern baldness (androgenetic alopecia)
  • Scarring from accidents, surgery, and chemical and thermal burns
  • Hair loss due to hair pulling, such as braiding or weaving
  • Heredity (family history of hair loss)
  • Medical conditions and medications
  • Changes in your hormones

While knowing the cause of your hair loss isn’t going to fix it by itself, recognizing the type of male hair loss you have is the first step in determining your ideal treatment plan.

MALE PATTERN BALDNESS (ANDROGENETIC ALOPECIA)

As its name implies, male pattern baldness usually exhibits a predictable pattern, with hair loss beginning at the hairline above the temples and gradually receding. Male pattern baldness is also the most common cause of hair loss in men, accounting for more than 95% of all hair loss cases.

Male pattern baldness causes your hair follicles to shrink gradually over time until they stop regrowing. Without proper attention, it can eventually progress to the point where only hair on the sides and rear of the head is left. With timely treatment, this outcome can be prevented.

PATCHY HAIR LOSS (ALOPECIA AREATA)

Much less common than male pattern hair loss is patchy hair loss and spot baldness, also known as alopecia areata. Alopecia areata is actually an autoimmune disease and occurs when your body’s immune system attacks your hair follicles, leaving a smooth, round patch of hairless skin. Patchy hair loss can happen in otherwise healthy people.

OTHER HAIR LOSS FACTORS

Hair loss in men can also be caused by external factors. Some examples include:

  • A traumatic event such as a death in the family
  • Medication to treat cancer, heart problems or high blood pressure

HAIR LOSS CAUSES IN WOMEN

The most common causes of hair loss in women are

  • Female pattern hair loss (androgenetic alopecia)
  • Traction hair loss (traction alopecia)
  • Scars from burns or major surgery
  • Crash dieting or poor nutrition
  • Birth control pills
  • Extreme stress
  • Iron deficiency
  • Hormonal imbalances like pregnancy and menopause
  • Major surgery
  • Medications
  • Endocrine conditions that affect thyroid function
  • Systemic diseases like lupus

THE EFFECTS OF HAIR LOSS IN WOMEN

Losing your hair can be a traumatic experience for anyone. But for women, hair loss can have a particularly negative affect on your sense of self and emotional well-being.

A full head of hair is often associated with beauty and a positive self-image, so there’s a psychological toll that can come from hair loss. To make matters worse, female hair loss is rarely discussed in the media or the medical community, making it harder for women to talk openly about their condition and how to address it.

Despite what you might think, hair loss in women is actually quite common. In fact, nearly 40% of people with at least some visible hair loss by age 40 are women. While there are close to 30 different conditions that can cause hair loss in women, just a few are responsible for the majority of cases. Fortunately, most can be resolved with proper treatment.

FEMALE PATTERN HAIR LOSS (ANDROGENETIC ALOPECIA)

By far the most common type of hair loss in women is female pattern hair loss. Known as androgenetic alopecia (the same term used to describe male pattern hair loss), this hereditary condition can be passed down from either or both sides of your family.

Women’s hairlines rarely recede like men’s. Instead, it usually begins with hair loss radiating from the top of your head. This diffuse thinning slowly spreads across your scalp.

Prompt treatment is recommended when you experience noticeable thinning. For the best treatment results, don’t wait for it to get worse. An Assure specialist can help you determine which treatments are best suited for your hair loss.

TRACTION HAIR LOSS (TRACTION ALOPECIA)

Hairstyles that pull women’s hair tight, such as braids and cornrows, can cause stress to the scalp and eventual hair loss. Known as traction alopecia, this type of hair loss happens slowly over time. It can be caused by a number of other factors, such as wearing wigs, hairbands, braids or excessively tight headgear. It can sometimes even be caused by women pulling their hair with their hands, a disorder known as trichotillomania.

OTHER CAUSES OF HAIR LOSS IN WOMEN

Less commonly, other lifestyle factors or medical conditions can lead to hair thinning or hair loss in women, including those listed above.

If you’re unsure of the cause of your hair loss or whether it can be treated, it’s always best to first visit your healthcare provider so he or she can confirm or rule out any possible medical causes of your hair loss.

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