We are not all blessed with a head full of hair for the rest of our lives. Many people, both men and women start having noticeable thinning of hair from their twenties these days what with our busy and stressful lives and poor diet. Severe hair loss can cause dramatic and devastating emotions in people which can negatively impact their self-esteem, body image and self-confidence. Now let’s have a look at the numbers before going any further.
Hair Loss Facts, Figures & Statistics:
- According to the NHS, 8 million of people suffers from hair loss in the UK
- Hair Loss in women affects roughly 50%
- 40% of men have noticeable hair loss by age 35, 65% by age 60 and 80% by age 80.
- Male pattern baldness and female pattern hair loss are the most common conditions.
- Men are more likely than women to look into hair restoration surgery (20% vs 12%)
- There was a 12% rise in the number of surgical hair restoration procedures worldwide between 2006 and 2008
- Women are much more likely to see their doctor about thinning hair first (53% vs 26%)
Source: Belgravia Centre & Wimpole Clinic
“Hair loss is extremely complicated and the unfortunate aspect is that the person is not aware of reduced volume (thinner hair) until they have lost 15% of volume, which means it started long before they noticed it”, says Philip Kingsley.
What’s normal hair shedding on a daily basis?
Its normal to shed 100 hairs in a single day for both men and women on the average scalp containing 100,000 hair follicles, so don’t panic! Most hair falls out as a result of washing or brushing the hair. If your hair is not thinning, you will be growing more hairs that you’re shedding anyway.
Some potential causes of hair loss:
- A deficiency in important vitamins and minerals such as vitamin D, vitamin B12 and iron can lead to hair loss. This is because they effect the growth cycle and prematurely shift hairs into the shedding stage. Over-exercising, fad diets, illness and surgery can all cause vitamin deficiencies and lead to hair loss. A detailed article on the deficiency of vitamin D causing hair loss can be found on the hair loss revolution website as stated below.
- A number of illnesses can also trigger hair loss including scalp ringworm, psoriasis and eczema. Whilst hair loss isn’t directly caused by eczema and conditions like dermatitis, the itchiness can cause people to scratch their heads excessively, causing damage and breakage to the hair.
- Processes that can lead to temporary hair loss include aggressive brushing, back combing, straightening and using hair dye.
- Hair loss is a common symptom of an imbalance in one’s thyroid hormones. Both hypothyroidism (an underactive thyroid) or hyperthyroidism (an overactive thyroid) can lead to excessive hair shedding. After a successful treatment of the thyroid imbalance, the hair generally regrows.
- When we hear talk of “alopecia,” most likely it is referring to alopecia areata. Alopecia areata is an autoimmune disease, which means that the body attacks itself. Alopecia areata is usually characterized by hair loss in round patches on the scalp or other parts of the body and affects men, women and children.
- Trauma/Stress a common reason that individuals experience hair loss (even more so for women than men). These can be life-altering occurrences such as a death or going through a divorce. These events can cause hair to be forced into a resting state before they normally would be.
- Illness can cause significant hair loss due to the pressure on the body it causes can disrupt the hair cycle. Once the body is in a healthy state, the cycle gets itself back on track.
- Many medications have hair loss listed as a possible side effect, although various types tend to affect each person differently. Medications that contain hormones — such as the birth control pill are common hair loss culprits. According to Mayo Clinic, antidepressants, blood pressure medications and arthritis treatments are also frequent offenders.
Source: Wimpole Clinic, Huffington Post article: http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2015/09/28/hair-loss-in-women_n_8207852.html?slideshow=true#gallery/350228/0, Hair Loss Revolution article: https://www.hairlossrevolution.com/vitamin-d-deficiency/
What can you do if you’re experiencing hair loss?
- Consult your doctor to confirm that you are definitely experiencing thinning hair. You can also check hair density if you notice anything different
- Improve your diet to ensure you are getting the right nutrients
- Per National Institutes of Health, best ways to increase vitamin D levels are through a combination of diet and exposure to sunlight and only use a supplement if necessary. With exposure to sunlight, care should be taken to protect the skin from damaging radiation. [Source: https://www.hairlossrevolution.com/vitamin-d-deficiency/ ]
- Tackle any stress that you are experiencing
- If you need to be on medication, ensure that you’re taking only clinically proven and medically approved ones for the treatment of hair loss depending on the severity
- If you’re thinking to go down the route of surgery such as Hair Restoration, ensure you do your research and go with a reputed and established practice. Hair Restoration is a surgical technique that involves moving skin containing hair follicles from one part of the body (the donor site) to bald or balding parts (the recipient site).
- If you want to go down the natural route, there are a few essential oils you can try, see below.
Natural tips for hair loss using essential oils:
- If you’re suffering from high stress, essential oils such as Bergamot, Ylang Ylang, Lavender, Roman Chamomile may help. A blend of either 2 of these essential oils in a diffuser in a room or diluted in your favourite carrier oil that you can apply on the temples or as a relaxing massage.
- Essential oils that are great for hair loss are Rosemary, Lavender, Clary Sage, Cedarwood. A few drops of a blend of either 2 of these essential oils diluted in good nourishing carrier oil and apply on the scalp by massaging it on a regular basis in order to help promote healthy hair growth.A healthy diet rich in vitamins and minerals definitely help, try eating local and in season. Obtaining vitamins and minerals directly from the food you consume is the best, however, in case of deficiency, do consult your doctor for a good supplement.
- These essential oils may help to balance hormone such as Clary Sage, Thyme, Sandalwood. Rose, Lavender and Frankincense may also help. Dilute a few drops of a blend of these essential oils into a carrier oil such as coconut, jojoba or sweet almond and massage into the skin. The body can absorb the essential oils through the skin.
- When applying essential oils topically, always dilute and do not use more than 2% of essential oils in the blend.
I hope you enjoy this blog and as always, do send a message if you have any questions and let us know any comments!!