Stress can affect every aspect of your health in sneaky ways, and the thinning of your precious locks is but one. In this study published in the American Journal of Pathology, researchers found that stress can actually cause your hair cycle to be pushed into a common type of hair loss called telogen effluvium. At the peak of your stress, you can actually shock the hair cycle, repeatedly pushing it into the shedding phase. However, this type of hair loss doesn’t have to be permanent. Engaging in activities or practices that release these feelings of tension and worry can bring your hair back to a healthy routine—one that doesn’t clog your drain. To cool down and relax for good, bone up on these 32 Secrets of a Stress-Proof Life.
You can also look at things like essential fatty acids. Fish oils or flaxseed oil can be wonderful for the hair, so worth adding into to your daily regime. Look at vitamins. Are you getting enough iron? Low iron, now, if you are approaching the menopause, and you are having a lot of heavy or prolonged or close together periods, you can end up with low iron and that can very quickly affect your health.
Traumas such as childbirth, major surgery, poisoning, and severe stress may cause a hair loss condition known as telogen effluvium, in which a large number of hairs enter the resting phase at the same time, causing shedding and subsequent thinning. The condition also presents as a side effect of chemotherapy – while targeting dividing cancer cells, this treatment also affects hair’s growth phase with the result that almost 90% of hairs fall out soon after chemotherapy starts.
Since it directs your overall metabolism, your thyroid gland produces the hormones that stimulate hair growth. When your thyroid is out of balance, your hair can become dry, brittle, and more prone to falling out. This is why looking into your thyroid health is one of the first things to do when you notice hair loss. However, many women discover that conventional lab tests may show normal hormone ranges even while thyroid-related hair loss is happening.
Tightly pulling back your hair in ponytails, cornrows or braids can lead to traction alopecia, characterized by hair breakage along the hairline and temples. Women athletes who often wear their hair pulled back are particularly at risk. A change in hairstyle usually helps; however, hair loss may be permanent if the tight styling techniques have been used too long.
Widely trusted as a cause for losing hair in the mid 20s, is diet. We all know a bit about this as the media is full to the brim daily with articles and findings about diets, side-effects and the negative aesthetics of poor health choices. However it’s very much true; if you’re not getting enough regular nutrients into your digestive system, you’re not getting them anywhere near your hair follicles either. On the other hand, extreme dieting or general physical trauma may also be a reason for hair loss in the mid 20s, so care should always be taken to ensure a balanced diet and gradual, healthy weight loss with the support of a dietician, if needed.
Daily hair counts are normally done when the pull test is negative. It is done by counting the number of hairs lost. The hair from the first morning combing or during washing should be counted. The hair is collected in a clear plastic bag for 14 days. The strands are recorded. If the hair count is >100/day, it is considered abnormal except after shampooing, where hair counts will be up to 250 and be normal.
In last place on Dr. Guyuron's list of risk factors for hair loss are psychological stress and hormone imbalances. Stress is known to flood the body with hormones, he says, including some that block the action of a follicle-protecting enzyme called 5-a reductase. And when testosterone forms and then breaks down in the body, it can release "breakdown products" that have been tied to thinning hair.
Role of Hormones -- Just as high levels of female hormones during pregnancy leave women with fuller, healthier hair, the declining levels during menopause may have the opposite impact. In addition, when the levels of female hormones fall, the effects of androgens (male hormones) can increase, causing certain hair follicles to fail. Depending on your genetic risk, these follicles produce progressively weaker hair and then eventually none at all. If your doctor has recommended replacing your declining testosterone levels, this also may work against your luscious locks as many aging women can experience increased hair loss from testosterone, especially if they are "androgen sensitive."
I personally love short hair on women, I cut my own hair very short a couple of times. But it's hard to shake off that feeling that somehow you've failed as a woman, because you don't have luscious flowing locks. The amount of times I've had guys ask me if I was a lesbian when I had short hair just illustrates the fact that we live in a world where people judge even your sexuality by what your hair looks like!
Trich is mostly considered untreatable; there's not enough research into the mental, or neurophysiological mechanisms of action to really underpin the cause. I suspect it works in a similar way to any other addiction; a stimulus like a small amount of pain induces a dopamine response, a pleasurable feeling. After a while, your physiological urge for the dopamine hit overpowers your reasoning to stop.