Most frequent causes of hair loss
In previous posts, we have explained what alopecia is and who may have it. While there are different causes, it’s important to define some of the main causes of hair loss.
The first cause of baldness, and one of the main ones, is the genetic predisposition that we may have for alopecia. This means that alopecia is hereditary. While it’s not possible to predict where the genes that transmit it come from, it is true that if our closest relatives are bald, especially in the case of male alopecia, it is very likely that we’ll also have it. Symptoms usually appear as you get older, and they usually begin to be evident in the absence of hair at the temples; for women, it starts with the loss of hair thickness.
As we already described in the post Alopecia in Women, hormonal disorders stemming from two very important changes in women’s bodies – pregnancy and menopause – can cause hair loss. In the case of these disorders, the alopecia may behave in various ways; it is reversible with pregnancy or may last in the case of menopause.
Thyroid problems may result in alopecia areata, where baldness occurs in patches. Other medical conditions such as ringworm, trichotillomania, diabetes, and lupus can also cause alopecia.
Some medications used to treat diseases like cancer, arthritis, depression, heart problems, gout, and high blood pressure can have hair loss as a side effect. It’s also common when radiation therapy is used to treat the head. It’s possible that the hair will not grow back as before, which can be quite stressful. Many people notice a reduction in hair thickness months after suffering a physical or emotional shock, though this type of hair loss is temporary.
After the first 10 days of starting chemotherapy treatment, almost 90% of hair falls out. This hair loss happens because chemotherapy affects all the cells in the body, not just cancer cells. However, not all chemo treatments result in hair loss, as it will depend on the drugs and doses.
Some hair treatments can be excessively aggressive, especially the use of some dyes or shampoos that weaken and fracture hair.
Stress can have many different symptoms. These include excessive hair loss. This type of hair loss is called telogen effluvium. Hair tends to fall out in strands, but the problem will go away when you get rid of the cause of that stressful period.