Women’s Hair And Health

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What does your hair and scalp say about your health?  Medications and some conditions might affect your body as well as your hair.  Dandruff isn’t contagious, just looks bad and is bothersome.  Some doctors aren’t sure what causes it but it may be due to an overgrowth of a fungus or some other risk factors like oily skin, stress, obesity, cold, dry weather and having eczema or psoriasis.  But isn’t it embarrassing?  Decrease that buildup of dead skin cells using an antidandruff shampoo daily by leaving it on for 5 minutes and then rinsing well.  If your dandruff is yellow and greasy, you may have seborrheic dermatitis.  This is an inflammatory skin condition that can occur where there are lots of oil glands.  You may need a prescription if it’s severe.

How Much Hair Are You Losing?

Shedding is natural.  Experts estimate that we might shed up to 100 or more hairs a day, but that isn’t anything to be alarmed over.  It’s noted that about 90% of your 100,000 hair follicles are producing hair at any given time.  Then the 10% remaining are in a resting (telogen) phase and the hair falls out after 2 to 3 months only to be replaced by new hair.  Thus goes the cycle.

When you experience a shock to your system such as surgery, vaccinations, childbirth, medications, crash diets, severe stress or thyroid problems, these can push your hair into its resting state.  Hair falling out and thinning, which is a condition called telgen effluvium, might occur after a shock to your system.  Your immune system mistakenly attacks hair follicles, causing hair to fall out, called alopecia areata.  This isn’t harmful or contagious but can be tough psychologically, and the hair may grow back on its own.

The loss of hair for 90% of the male population is caused by genes.  Hair thinning all over the head may be age-related.  Women rarely go bald and tend to lose hair more slowly than men.  

Help Hair Loss By Avoiding These Simple Things

Avoid sun that can cause damage to your hair. Your locks need protein and iron to stay healthy, along with omega-3 fatty acids, zinc and vitamin A.  Low-calorie diets are often lacking in sufficient nutrients and can stunt hair growth or leave it dull and limp.  Eating salmon and walnuts for those omega-3 fatty acids will help keep your hair shiny.  Spinach, carrots, Brazil nuts, oysters and cashews is all contributed to those nutrients needed for shiny, healthy hair.  Most premature graying of hair is genetic and not usually a sign of poor health.

Avoid using that blow dryer, flat iron, coloring, bleaching and over-brushing, as this will weaken your hair.  Doing less leads to healthier tresses when it comes to your hair.  Some medications that list hair loss as a side effect are anticlotting drugs, cholesterol-lowering drugs, antidepressants, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS), drugs for menopause, birth control and antibiotics.  Hair usually grows back after the medication is stopped.

Now, as great as it feels to get a good scalp massage, this doesn’t give evidence that this will slow hair loss or improve scalp conditions.  What it does do is relieve that stress, and can’t we all use that?  Your scalp is covered with nerve endings that make it super-sensitive to touch and this will be sure to relieve that stress.

So don’t fret about a little hair loss.  Just think of all the bald men out there.  Aren’t we women just the lucky ones, huh?

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