Thinning hair why is this happening to me, and what to look for? UPDATED OCT 2022
Even in your mid, late teens, and early 20’s you can experience changes in the density and texture of your hair, and again in your 40’s and 50’s as with menopause. Here are some things to consider when you see and feel changes to your hair density, texture, and fragility of hair strands.
There are 3 categories that can cause thinning hair.
MECHANICAL DAMAGE is when you use extremely HOT tools including hairdryers, curling/ flat irons daily. Poorly maintained combs, hairbrushes and tools used by your stylist that are not properly maintained. Even cutting tools can cause this type of damage. Remembering ponytails and buns can also cause damage. Today you should also be aware of hair extension applications.
Mechanical damage can be reversed by finding the correct reparative shampoo, reconstructive treatments and products that deal with preventing heat damage. If you like using hair ties and barrettes, be sure their not broken or too tightly secured as this may result in breakage. Inspect all your styling tools to be sure they are in good working condition including your hairdryer. Excessive heat has been noted by dermatologists to also cause skin irritations as well.
All the above can create weaker hair and possibly breakage if not kept in check, this can result in spot thinning (not to be confused with alopecia in its various forms) or loss of density.
CHEMICAL DAMAGE includes bleaching, coloring, perming, relaxing, straightening, plus heat activated services.
We all like to dabble in chemical services, but you must talk to your stylist if you are experiencing any changes in your hair. Don't forget to let your stylist know if you have recently started taking medication even allergy medication as it can affect the outcome of a chemical service. It may not happen immediately but may take 2 or 3 services to see the changes in your hair.
SYSTEMIC (from within,) both Hereditary and Reactionary. Hereditary can be attributed to your genetics, reactionary can be attributed to diet, environmental, stress, hormonal conditions, including menopause and medications including supplements. These can be managed with professional guidance from a trichologist, dietitian, homeopathic practitioner, nutritionist, stylist, or doctor. There are easily accessible search engines but “proceed with caution”. Being self educated on certain conditions can be overwhelming.
Knowing hair growth in 3 stages Anagen Catagen and Telogen
Gently brushing your hair and scalp daily can be the simplest and most effective approach to address thinning hair. It seems most of us think the reverse, if the hair is fragile, we don't brush, but it does help improve blood flow (micro circulation) to the root of the hair which stimulates hair growth and density. Whatever falls out will soon be replaced with new healthier hair. Anagen stage (new hair growth) consists of new vellus hairs which grow quickly but are shorter in length. Followed by the Catagen stage the longest of this cycle. Finally, the Telogen stage, the dying stage you will notice more hair in your brush, sink and floor and then the cycle begins again. Note the brush you use for grooming is extremely important, view the links below.
In some cases, thinning can be reversed and managed but don’t just sit back and let it happen. Be pro active and address changes as soon as you see any of the above circumstances arrive.
CHECK your NAILS
Vertical lines are usually common but if you see horizontal lines this may be an indication something is disrupting the growth and may be systemic. Nails and hair are both comprised of keratin proteins, so if you see a change in your nails check your hair as well.