What Is Hair Loss?
Hair grows everywhere on the skin except On the bottoms of our feet and the palms of the hands, but hairs are so fine they are practically invisible. Hair is composed of a protein known as keratin that is made in hair follicles from the outer layer of the skin. Old cells have been pushed out through the surface of the skin in the speed of about six inches, as follicles create new hair follicles. The hair you’ll be able to see is actually a series of dead skin cells. The adult head devotes around 100 of them a day and has approximately 100,000 to 150,000 hairs; finding a few stray hairs on your hairbrush is not necessarily cause for alarm.
About 90% of the hair on a Individual’s Scalp is growing. Each follicle has its own life cycle that can be affected by age, disease, and a variety of different aspects. This life cycle is broken up into three phases:
- Anagen — active hair growth that lasts between two to six years
- Catagen — transitional hair growth that lasts two to three weeks
- Telogen — resting phase that lasts about two to three months; at the end of the resting phase the hair is shed and a new hair replaces it and the growing cycle starts again.
As individuals age, their rate of hair growth slows.
- Involutional alopecia is a pure condition where the hair slowly thins with age. More hair follicles go into the resting phase, and the remaining hairs become shorter and fewer in number.
- Androgenic alopecia Men with this condition, called male pattern baldness, can begin suffering hair loss as early as their teens or early 20s. It is characterized by a receding hairline and disappearance of hair from the crown and scalp. Girls of this condition, called female pattern hair loss, don’t experience noticeable thinning later or before their 40s. Women experience a thinning over the entire scalp, with the hair loss in the crown.
- Alopecia areata often begins suddenly and causes rapid hair loss in children and adults. This condition might lead to complete baldness (alopecia totalis). However, in about 90 percent of individuals with the illness, the hair returns in a few years.
- Alopecia universalis causes all body hair to fall out, including the eyebrows, eyelashes, and pubic hair.
- Trichotillomania, seen most frequently in children, is a psychological disorder in which a person pulls out one’s own hair.
- Telogen effluvium is temporary hair thinning over the scalp that occurs because of changes in the growth cycle of hair. A large number of hairs enter the resting phase at the same time, causing hair shedding and subsequent thinning.
- Scarring alopecias result in permanent loss of hair. Inflammatory skin conditions(cellulitis, folliculitis, acne), and other skin disorders (such as some forms of lupus and lichen planus) often result in scars that destroy the ability of the hair to regenerate. Hot combs and hair too tightly woven and pulled can also result in permanent hair loss.
Factors affecting Hair Loss:
Some of the most common causes of alopecia/hair loss include:
- Physical stress due to overwork illness, accident, injuries, childbirth, emotional disorders, or surgery which can cause telogen effluvium
- Usage of birth control pills by women
- Pregnancy in women which could lead to hormonal imbalances
- Scalp infections such as ringworm or fungal infections
- Poor diet, especially less protein intake, which can cause hair loss as hair strands are essentially made of the protein, keratin
- Excessive hair styling and colouring
- Genetic hair loss
- Autoimmune disorders such as Alopecia areata, or lupus, where the immune system of the body attacks its own healthy cells, including hair follicles
- Chemotherapy which can result in spot baldness or complete baldness
- Taking excessive amounts of Vitamin A supplements
- Male pattern baldness caused by a combination of family genes and male hormones
- Female pattern baldness caused by family genes
- Medical conditions such as, anaemia, iron deficiency, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) in women, eating disorders, and thyroid disease
- Vitamin B deficiency in the body
- Sudden weight loss due to physical trauma
- Burns and X-rays too can cause sudden temporary hair loss
- Taking medicines such as blood thinners and anti-depressants
- Trichotillomania which is an impulse control disorder causing people to compulsively pull out their own hair
- Natural ageing, especially when people enter their 50s or 60s.
Alkaline Water Is the Solution:
Drinking water that is alkaline to reduce harmful compounds has benefits for your hair. But when rinsing your hair you actually want to use acidic water. Inside the body, the ideal healthy environment is slightly alkaline, the blood has a healthy pH range of 7.35 – 7.45. But outside the body, the proper pH of hair and skin is actually acidic! Your hair and skin have a healthy pH range of between 3 – 3.5. Your skin’s acid-mantle is your first defense against infection. The acidity of your skin destroys harmful organisms by oxidizing them – it works the same way oxidation destroys your hair! For this reason, the ideal rinse for your hair and skin are acidic.