Work pressure, health, and life’s uncertainty are enough to exact anxiety in our lives. However, nothing can make your mental health more questionable than unusual amounts of hair clogging your sink or shower drain. While it is normal to lose a few strands of hair a day, excessive hair loss can signal a bigger problem.
Hair experts estimate that you can lose up to 100 strands of hair a day. This could be caused by using a comb, lying on the pillow, or taking a shower. Losing hair is a condition that happens when the body’s hair production cycle is interrupted. It can occur in different parts of the body but mostly affect the scalp.
To understand the factors that interfere with the process of hair production and the best ways to combat them, you need to understand the hair cycle.
The Hair Production Cycle
The hair production cycle has three phases, the anagen or the growing phase, the catagen or the regressing phase, and the telogen also known as the resting phase.
• Anagen - The stages of hair growth start with anagen, which is the longest phase. The lasting time for this phase depends on the type of hair. For instance, the hairs in your scalp can continue growing for 3 to 8 years. This is different for other kinds of hairs such as eye blow hair which lasts for only 2 to 4 months, which explains why they grow to a short length.
• Catagen - The catagen phase begins when the growing phase ends and tends to last for up to two weeks. During this phase, the hair follicles shrink and separate themselves from the blood vessel, slowing hair growth.
• Telogen - The telogen stage is the last in the cycle and lasts for up to 3 months. At this phase, the hair follicles are in resting mode preparing to begin a new growth cycle. Most health experts consider this phase as the shedding phase as well.
Causes of Hair Loss and How to Combat Them
The most common cause of hair loss is hereditary factors. As the age progresses both men and women tend to lose their hair amount and thickness. This type of hair loss cannot be associated with a disease. It has a direct connection to aging and changes in adrenaline and other hormonal imbalances. The hair follicles become weaker with age, reducing the lifespan of the anagen phase. The best way to combat this is to come to terms with the situation. Constantly thinking about it will only increase anxiety and stress, forcing the hair follicle into resting mode. You can also visit a dermatologist for advice and possibly a hair transplant.
Stress is the body's physical, mental, or emotional response to change in circumstances. For instance, a physical response like an increase in heart rate and higher blood pressure can activate emotional responses like fear and anxiety. When your body is in distress, it tends to limit blood flow and circulation to the less essential organs of the body, like your hair follicle. Stress hormones also release chemicals that can cause interruption to non-essential body functions. When this happens, hair follicles can be forced to go into the resting phase and cause hair loss. You can reduce hair loss associated with stress by keeping your stress levels under control. Techniques such as Yoga, meditation, reading, and exercise can help you combat stress and feel more relaxed.
3. Poor Diet
Our body receives nutrients from the food that we eat. During digestion, the essential organs receive the nutrients first while the others follow. The hair follicles are placed last in the list or hierarchy of essential organs. This means that they also get their supply of nutrients last. If your consumption of nutrients is not enough, the hair growth receives blows. To keep your hair healthy and in good condition, make sure you eat a well-balanced diet. Before taking other measures of preventing hair loss, ensure you are eating healthy. A balanced diet will provide plenty of nutrients to the body, keeping it healthy and hydrated. A healthier body will keep your hair growing phase active for a long time.
Living a stress-free life, consuming a balanced diet, and gentle hair care can help achieve healthy and long-term hair growth. When you see any sign of losing hair at a faster rate than normal, check your lifestyle and consider talking to a dermatologist. A fundamental issue that is interrupting the phases of hair growth may be responsible for hair loss. Therefore, you will need to treat it immediately to slow the loss of hair and protect the remaining healthy hair.