Hair Fall is referred to as alopecia in medical terms.
Causes and risk factors for hair Fall
- Age: Many men and women experience thinning of hair in their 30s and 40s.
- Life changes: Illness, emotional trauma, stress, protein deprivation because of dieting, Hormonal changes.
- Health conditions: Iron deficiency anemia, Thyroid disease, secondary syphilis, etc.
- Genetic causes.
- Environmental factors
Who offers the right treatment for hair fall?
Dermatologists are the doctors who specialize in problems of skin, hair, and nails. They provide advanced diagnosis and treatment of hair thinning and fall.
Patterns of Hair Fall
Patchy Hair Fall
Common causes of patchy Hair Fall are
- Secondary syphilis.
- Tinea Capitis (fungal infection)
- Alopecia aerate (small circular or coin size bald patches on the scalp that usually grow back within months),
- Traction alopecia (thinning from tight braids or ponytails),
- Trichotillomania: (the habit of twisting or pulling hair out)
Diffuse Hair Fall
There is an overall hair thinning without specific bald spots or patterns. Some common causes of diffuse Hair Fall are
- Systemic disease-induced alopecia (endocrine disease, telogen effluvium, and cancer).
- Telogen effluvium (rapid shedding after fever, childbirth, or rapid weight loss.
- Androgenetic or androgenic Hair Fall which is referred to as male-pattern baldness and female-pattern baldness.
- Drug-induced alopecia,
- Protein malnutrition.
Treatment of Hair Fall
Medications like Minoxidil, Finasteride
This topical medication is applied on the scalp and is available over the counter. Men and women can use it. It works best on the crown and less on the frontal region.
Finasteride: This medication is FDA approved for use in men with androgenic Hair Fall.
Lower level laser devices are approved by the FDA for use in male pattern Hair Fall. These devices are used at home without a physician’s prescription. They come in varied forms like combs, helmets, and hats.
Surgery or hair transplants
Hair from the back of the scalp is removed with their roots and transplanted on the bald areas. Scalp reduction or cutting away bald areas and stitching the rest of the scalp together is also practiced. Typically, 500 or more hairs may be transplanted in a session. This is an expensive way to treat Hair Fall.
The efficacy of this form of therapy is currently under investigation. Platelet-rich plasma obtained from the processed whole blood of male patients with pattern Hair Fall and then re-injected into their own scalp has been suggested as an adjuvant treatment.
Female pattern Hair Fall tends to be more diffuse. There seems to be a normal physiologic thinning that comes with age and occurs in many women in their early to mid-30s.
What about pregnancy Hair Fall?
Pregnancy may cause many changes in the scalp hair, as the hormones fluctuate during pregnancy. There may be a loss of hair after delivery or a few months later which will eventually normalize.
Specific treatments are for Hair Fall in women
Minoxidil and hair transplant are recommended treatments for Hair Fall in women.
- Surgical procedures like hair transplants can be useful for some women as well as men to “fill in” thinned-out areas.
Do Vitamins help to control Hair Fall?
There is no solid evidence to support the benefits of vitamins and nutritional supplements in treating Hair Fall.
How to prevent Hair Fall?
- Maintain Good hair and scalp hygiene.
- Good nutrition that has adequate levels of iron and vitamin B is helpful.
- Treatment of underlying medical conditions like thyroid disease, anemia, and hormonal imbalances helps is preventing Hair Fall.