Causes Of Alopecia
Androgenetic hair loss, or male pattern baldness, is the most common cause of hair loss in both men and women.
A lack of protein, iron and vitamins in your diet can contribute to baldness.
The application of radiation and use of chemotherapy may cause hair loss.
In addition to being the #1 killer, it may make a person literally pull one's hair out (trichotillomania), or cause the hair follicles to go into a dormant phase.
Certain topical and oral medications have been known to contribute to hair loss in both adults and children.
And finally, no one escapes father time, the natural loss of hair as we age.
Chemotherapy and Hair Loss
Alopecia Medicamentosa is the medical term for the hair loss that results from chemotherapy and radiation treatments.
For some people, the word cancer creates fear and confusion. Patients can be uneasy about the treatment and side effects, particularly hair loss. Being prepared for the hair loss with the facts may help you feel less fearful.
Hair loss is typically a side effect of chemotherapy and normally begins two to three weeks after the first treatment. Here are a few things to consider to minimize your fear:
- Cut your hair before it falls out. The experience of losing your hair may be worse than dealing with it once it’s gone.
- Plan ahead by shopping for a wig (cranial prosthetic) before your hair is gone. This will allow you to match your current style and natural color. Or take the opportunity to try a different style or color. Note: Check with your health insurance provider as some companies may cover the cost of a wig.
- Try hats with hair attached to them or head scarves, as an alternative to a wig.
- Remember to cover your head or use sunscreen on your scalp. Skin that has been covered with hair may be particularly sensitive to the sun’s UV rays.
- Treat your new hair gently once it grows back. Avoid any hair services that involve chemical processing.
Types of Alopecia
A skin condition that causes hair loss. Starts with small, round patches of hair loss and then progresses until there is total scalp hair loss.
Known as male-pattern baldness that occurs in both men and women. It develops slowly and increases with age.
The sudden or sometimes unnoticeable falling out of hair in patches or spots. Known causes are poor blood supply to affected areas, a thyroid imbalance, an autoimmune disorder, and stress.
Primarily caused by excessive pulling of the hair. Such as the tension used when creating tight braids and ponytails, or with chemical relaxers.