Baldness is incredibly common. According to a survey by the International Society of Hair Restoration surgery, around 35 million men and 21 million women are struggling with a form of hair loss today.
We usually think about hair loss as a tell-tale sign of getting older. Researchers do agree, the likelihood of losing your strands gradually rises the older we become. By the age of 35, around 40 percent of men report visible signs of hair loss, and by 60, the number climbs to 65 percent. However, more millennials are complaining about signs of thinning, like a receding hairline or patches of balding hair.
Today we’ll focus on the causes behind why more millennials are scouring the web for hair restoration solutions and what you can do to protect your hair and scalp.
What is Causing my Premature Hair Loss?
In some cases, the styling products can contain ingredients that are harmful to the hair and scalp. For instance, permanent straighteners can contain lye, an ingredient that’s commonly associated with chemical burns and hair loss. Overusing dyes and gels can stress out strands, causing them to become brittle and susceptible to breakage.
Excessive use of heating devices such as straighteners, curling irons, and blow dryers can also contribute to unhealthy hair. These heating devices strip the natural moisture from the hair strands, causing them to become dry. This leads to split ends and breakage of the hair.
Be cautious of the ingredients that your shampoo contains. If there are ingredients labeled sulfates, parabens, or other harmful chemicals, stay away! These products can be detrimental to your hair health. Just because a product smells good, does not mean it is good for your hair.
Over 8 million American’s have struggled with eating disorders. Millennials are especially vulnerable to developing disorders due to the dangerous combination of keeping up with appearances on social media and managing both financial and work obligations. Disorders like bulimia and anorexia cause the body to become malnourished. Healthy hair needs adequate amounts of a protein called keratin. Without it, the hair becomes weak and dehydrated. With this being said, trying to look like the models in magazines isn’t always ideal for your hair health.
During pregnancy, hormone levels peak to support healthy growth and development for the mom and the baby. After childbirth, hormone levels plummet significantly to return to pre-pregnancy levels. The fluctuations in hormone levels have been linked to temporary shedding. Women should see shedding gradually return to normal after a few months.
DHT, abbreviated for dihydrotestosterone, is a hormone that can negatively affect your hair. This is derived from the testosterone hormone that is produced in the body. An over production of DHT on the scalp can kill off your hair follicles. This is because it binds to the healthy hair strands and deprives them from the oxygen and nutrients needed to survive. This eventually leads to the death of the hair follicle, causing it to fall out.
While uncommon, anesthesia can cause temporary hair loss. Surgeons are still conducting new research, suggesting anesthesia slows down cell division. Human hair grows in phases. If the cells in the hair follicles decrease too much, strands will convert to the “resting” phase and temporarily stop growing. There are also hundreds of drugs that are necessary to undergo surgical procedures and assist in recovery but can cause temporary hair loss.
The American Psychological Association (APA) found that millennials and gen Xers report exceptionally higher stress levels than older generations. There are several studies linking stress to hair loss. The medical term for stress-induced hair loss is Telogen effluvium.
Stress disrupts the natural hair loss cycle causing strands to prematurely move out of the growth phase and permanently enter the rest phase. Strands become more susceptible to shedding as a result of the abrupt interruption to the growth cycle.
If you’re noticing more strands in the shower or on your pillow, consider incorporating stress-relieving activities into your daily routine. Carve out a few minutes each morning to meditate and workout. Mindfulness and moderate exercise have been scientifically proven to dramatically decrease stress levels and could even restore your hairline.
Is There a Way to Slow or Prevent Baldness/Hair Thinning?
Of course! According to recent research, as soon as you spot hair loss issues, talk with a specialist. The earlier you can intervene, the better. Your dermatologist, hair restoration surgeon, or physician will be able to help you make the best decision for your health.
Aside from the main points listed above, there are products available to help slow down your hair loss. Focus on incorporating a healthy diet into your everyday routine. This means making sure that you are getting enough vitamins, minerals, and proteins to supply your body and your hair. Some foods that will help keep your hair nourished are nuts, seeds, vegetables, meats, fish, and cheese. These are just a few.
Get a DHT blocking shampoo for hair growth. These products supply the proper enzymes to block the DHT hormone that can be detrimental to your hair health. By using this shampoo, your hair follicles will be free of this hormone production, and able to thrive once again!
You can also take a multivitamin to ensure that your body and hair are getting all of the essential nutrients to remain healthy. The vitamins with all natural and organic ingredients are going to be your best option. These can be found at your local grocery store or online.
Hair loss affects people of all ages. The root cause could be associated with changes in your diet, styling routine, or stress. You can experience temporary balding after recovering from major surgery or childbirth too. The good news is, there are products on the market that can help you. Take advantage of these and don’t wait until it is too late. Your hair is precious, so make sure you treat it that way!