Causes Behind Hair Loss

Common Causes Behind Hair Loss

There are many causes behind hair loss. Sometimes it's just a matter of hereditary factors, as well as hormonal imbalances, diseases, medications, and other external factors like stress. Chemo, and radiation therapy are the most common hair loss causes.

If you want to know what are the diseases and conditions, and what category belongs each one go to Causes of Hair Loss.

Hair Loss Caused by Chemotherapy

Hair loss caused by chemotherapy is one of the of the causes behind hair loss. It is almost certain, if you underwent that treatment.

One of the most distressful and unpleasant side effects of chemo and radiation treatments is seeing before your eyes the hair falling. Besides, for many people, sudden hair loss is a sure sign of cancer.

Of course, no one would like to go through that experience. If you want nobody to know you have cancer, you may feel frightened just by thinking that other people notice you are losing your hair.

You may be wondering why hair loss happens when you are undergoing chemotherapy. Simply put, because chemotherapy medications are extremely potent drugs aiming to rapidly destroy the growth of cancer cells.

The problem is that they also attack good cells, including cells that make hair grow.

Chemo or radiotherapy treatments, as well as chemotherapy drugs can damage the cells that cause the hair to grow.

This can lead to a certain type of hair loss known as alopecia. It causes you to lose hair not only on the head but also eyebrows, eyelashes, and other parts of your body. If you do not lose your hair completely, it could happen that males your hair thinner.

After starting the chemotherapy, the hair begins to fall around two to four weeks.

Thankfully, usually most of the time, hair loss is temporary. The re-growth of your hair begins three to six months after your last chemotherapy, although the texture and shade of your hair may vary.

Fungal Infection on Scalp 

Ringworm Scalp InfectionRingworm Scalp Infection

The main fungal infection on the scalp is the ringworm, also named tinea capitis. Although this is a fungal infection affecting the scalp, it can strike other body regions, like the groin, also called jock itch, and the beard, feet, as in athletes foot, and another skin areas.

In children is a common condition, but is also seen in adults.  There are two different kinds of fungi involved here, microsporum canis and trichophyton.

The disease is contagious, and is transmitted if you have a direct contact with the infected person. The fungi's spores lasts for a long time.

What are the symptoms. There are 10 of them, namely:

            ·    At first, affects a small portion of the scalp, but little by little spreads out over the entire area

            ·    Broken hairs on the bald patch, seen as small black dots

            ·    Enlarged and tender neck lymph nodes

            ·    Hair Loss

            ·    Low fever

            ·    Scalp inflammation and redness

            ·    Scalp itching

            ·    Scaly and round bald patches with a very well defined border

            ·    Small boils or pustules on the scalp

            ·    Sometimes it looks like psoriasis

But there are other fungal infections on the scalp. To see which ones, go to the article Causes of Hair Loss, and the subheading Fungal Hair Loss. 

Male Pattern Baldness and Genetics

The most common hereditary cause in men is a condition called male pattern baldness and in women is named, female pattern baldness. As is stated in the U.S. National Library of Medicine, there are other names for this condition, as androgenic alopecia, male pattern alopecia, and pattern baldness.

In some men occurs gradually, as we are getting older. The signs are bald spots and a receding hairline. While in women it becomes visible as thinning hair.

Hormones and Hair Loss 

What are hair loss hormones? These are the hormones or hormonal imbalances that are among the causes behind hair loss. To see a list of the conditions that has to do with hormones and hair loss, especially in women, go the article Causes of Hair Loss, and the subheading Hormones Hair Loss.  

One of the least expected twists in females is when testosterone converts into 5a-dihydrotestosterone, or DHT. Testosterone is an androgen male hormone. In men, DHT causes the hair follicles to shrink, regress, and die, resulting in premature balding.

But women are not immune to that problem, because they also have testosterone levels in their own bodies, although in lower levels than men, and experience the conversion of testosterone into DHT. Unfortunately for women, even a small part of this process causes them to suffer hair loss.

There are other hormones that lead to DHT being produced. One of them are anabolic steroids. The anabolic steroids are synthetic hormones that looks like testosterone, promoting growth of muscles.

They are legally used to treat different kinds of weight loss, and illegally they are notorious improving the physical performance of some athletes, for instance baseball players hitting ridiculous amounts of home runs, like 50, 60 or more per season.

The problem with your hair is, that anabolic steroids also suffer from the same evil as testosterone. They are cursed the same. They produce DHT, with the same end result, which is hair loss.  

In case of women, changing the contraception method, from pill to another thing, also leads to hair loss. It activates an induced shedding hair stage, because the body reacts to the changes which affect hormones. 

Hair Loss and Disease 

The diseases are among the main causes of hair loss. There are external and internal diseases that have a direct or indirect effect on our appearance. Some of them are the responsible for the hair to fall.

Of course, not every disease is exclusive to women, nor to men. If you want to see the list, just click here, or go the article Diseases that Cause Hair Loss. They are the most famous, or should I say, infamous diseases, as you do wish to call it.

Medications Causing Hair Loss

When we go to the doctor, almost always we are confident that our health problem will be solved. Unfortunately, there are some prescribed medications causing hair loss as a side effect as well. Some of these alter the natural cycle of hair growth.

The most prone people who suffer from this problem are those who take medications for cancer or chemotherapy drugs. It not only causes hair loss on the head, but also on the eyebrows, eyelashes and the entire body.  

The magnitude of hair loss depends on what type of drug is used, as well as the dose, and how sensitive that person is to the medication.

Telogen is the hair growth phase in which drugs cause the more damage. This is the most common, and it occurs from two to four months after taking the medication.

This disorder causes the hair follicles to enter the resting phase prematurely. This unleash the exogen, which is the detachment phase, to happen too early, like a domino effect.

People with this condition lose 30 to 70 percent more than they would lose in one day, which is 100 to 150 hairs. To see the problems that trigger Telogen Effluvium click here.

The main factor on these medications is that they alter the natural hair cycle, or trigger the Telogen Effluvium prematurely. Yep, these are a serious threat to your hair. If you want to see a list of the medications that cause hair loss, go to the article Hair Loss due to Medication.

Hair Loss and Stress

According to Mayo Clinic, stress and hair loss are related. That's why we can say for sure that stress is one of the causes behind hair loss.  

The loss of hair that comes from stress can occur, either due to a very stressful physical, or emotional event such as a divorce, the death of a loved one, injury, illness, surgery, or even serious financial problems.

There are two types of stress:

            ·    Emotional Stress

            ·    Physical Stress

Click here to know about it in the article Hair Loss from Stress.

As you can see, there are many causes behind hair loss. I guess you probably didn't think there would be so many. If you want a more detailed explanation, read Causes of Hair Loss.

I am committed to constantly update this site, striving to inform you the latest and more effective ways to treat the problem of hair loss. A problem that threatens not only our appearance, but our self esteem as well.