Some Important Facts About Hair Loss
Hair loss can be one of the most disturbing things to happen to a person and sadly, there is little that can be done about its most common cause, which is androgenic alopecia. This article deals with the process that leads to hair loss and the treatment options available for some of its causes.
The hair cycle
Each strand of hair goes through a cycle of growing, resting, and ultimately falling out. This cycle generally lasts for a year, with as much as 90% of the scalp going through a growing phase from two to six years. The other 10% of the scalp goes though the resting phase that lasts from two to three months. At the end of the resting phase, the hair then begins to shed.
People normally shed as many as 50 to 100 hairs every day. The lost hair is typically replaced by new hair that grows out from the very same follicle and it grows at a rate of half an inch every month.
Hair is composed of a form of protein, and is actually the same material that makes up the finger and toenails. For this reason, adequate protein consumption is necessary for normal hair production.
Hair loss occurrence
As many as 50% of all people experience a certain degree of hair loss by the time they reach the age of 50. Nevertheless, unusual hair loss that comes after combing or brushing should be brought to the attention of a dermatologist.
Hair loss treatment
In cases wherein the hair loss is the result of medication, stress or an iron deficiency, the condition is usually temporary and will normalize when the cause is ceased. If the cause of the hair loss is infection however, the person may require antibiotics or antifungal medication. Alopecia areata is typically treated with steroid injection, and it is best that the condition is treated as early as possible.
Androgenic alopecia is a much more severe condition, for which there is currently no known cure. There are some treatment methods available however, such as Finasteride or Propecia, which is prescribed for men only. Minoxidil or Rogaine can be used by both men and women, with the compound being applied directly onto. Minoxidil works best on the top and the back of the scalp, while hair is still present.
Cosmetic alternatives for hair loss
In people where hair loss has already occurred, getting a more flattering hairstyle is the best option. In more severe cases, a person can opt for hairpieces or wigs. A further option is hair transplant treatment, the state of which has improved considerably over the past several years.