Hair loss can be temporary or long lasting, based on its identification, cause and treatment. However, when the cause isn’t clear, hair loss that was first temporary may become permanent as a result of incorrect diagnosis. Alopecia is the medical term for excessive or abnormal hair loss. There are different kinds of alopecia. As hair loss is fairly common with both the sexes, symptoms show that there’s something that is going wrong in the body. Hormonal imbalance, stress, pregnancy, medications , diseases or something as fairly simple as genes can be the cause of baldness, also known as Areata. In this situation, hairs often, but not always grow back when the event has passed. There are many types of hair loss, also called alopecia. Involutional alopecia The rate of hair growth slows as you age, causing the thickness as well as volume to reduce. In this type of hair loss, the hair follicles gradually go into the telogen (resting) phase and the remaining hair become shorter and less in number, sometimes even brittle. Telogen effluvium You may experience temporary hair loss after a stressed episode like childbirth, fever, severe illness, stress or sudden weight loss, which decreases gradually. This happens due to changes in the growth cycle of hair, when a large number of hair go into the resting phase (telogen) at the same time. Anagen effluvium Hair shedding and thinning usually occur as the result of exposure to chemicals or toxins (such as cancer treatments) during anagen, the growth phase of the hair lifecycle. Traction alopecia Pressure on hair because of particular hairstyles causing small, localized areas a type of hair loss called traction alopecia. Trichotillomania Some people have the habit of twisting or pulling their own hair from the scalp and eyelashes. This is referred to as trichotillomania or hair pulling disorder. Trichorrhexis Nodosa A defect in hair fibers characterized by fraying and swelling nodes along the hair shaft is the cause of hair to break off easily. Let us now see the difference in male, female & children baldness pattern is: For male: If you experience a receding hairline and gradual disappearance of hair from the crown, you may be suffering from androgenic alopecia (also known as male pattern baldness). In this condition, you may experience hair loss in your teens or early 20s. Men may notice hair loss at the top of the scalp and a receding hairline particularly along the temples. The typical pattern forms an ‘M’ shape. Lastly, the hair becomes finer, shorter and thinner creating a U-shaped pattern around the sides of the head. It is a genetically predisposed condition that can affect both men and women. For female: If you experience a general thinning of the hair over the entire scalp, extensive hair loss at the crown with your hairline at the front intact, you may be suffering from female pattern baldness. Your hair parting may become wider with time due to hair thinning. You may notice hair thinning in your 20s but you are not very likely to experience noticeable thinning until your 40s or later because the pace of hair loss tends to be gradual. For children: When a child or a young adult experiences one – two totally smooth, round patches of hair loss mostly on the scalp, they may be suffering from alopecia areata. The hair loss may also be seen in the eyebrows, arms, legs or facial hair. It is often sudden in onset and the hair usually grows back in six months to a year. However, when the hair grows back in one area, it may fall out in another. In some cases, the hair becomes thinner, while in others, it may grow and break off, leaving short stubs. Alopecia areata is generally considered an autoimmune condition, while alopecia totalis, an extensive form, the entire scalp goes bald. Scalp conditions and its causes: Scarring alopecia It is a permanent loss of hair. Inflammatory skin conditions and other skin disorders often result in scars that destroy the ability to regenerate hair. Hot combs and hair too tightly woven or pulled can also result in permanent hair loss. Lichen Planopilaris It is a type of scarring in the scalp that occurs from a skin disease known as lichen planus, which affects areas of the skin with hair. It can cause redness, irritation, and in some cases, permanent hair loss. Tinea Capitis In simple words, it’s the ringworm of the scalp, a fungal infection. Hair usually breaks off at areas that are infected causing bald scalp with small black dots. The skin is inflamed, round, scaly areas with pus-filled sores called kerions. It is contagious and can spread from sharing combs and hats. Once the infection is cured, the hair grows back. If you happen to experience any of the above symptoms, our expert dermatologists at Skin City will aid to your concerns and implement effective treatments.
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