Alopecia is a common cause of hair loss that can occur at any age and usually displays as small, coin-sized, round patches of baldness on the scalp, although hair elsewhere such as the eyebrows, eyelashes, body and limbs can be affected.
In some people, larger areas are affected and occasionally it can involve the whole scalp (alopecia totalis) or even the entire body and scalp (alopecia universalis).
It is not possible to predict how much hair will be lost and regrowth of hair in typical alopecia areata is usual over a period of months or sometimes years, but cannot be guaranteed. The chances of the hair regrowing are better if less hair is lost at the beginning.
Most people, with only a few small patches, get full regrowth within a year but if more than half the hair is lost then the chances of a full recovery are not good. The hair sometimes regrows white, at least in the first instance and most people do get further attacks of alopecia areata.
Our Intralace System is an ideal treatment for this condition as the breathable mesh applied allows the hair to grow underneath. Clients can have the system removed and refitted at any time to flexibly manage the appearance of the condition.
Female Pattern Hair Loss
About one-third of women experience hair loss (alopecia) at some time in their lives. For postmenopausal women, as many as two-thirds suffer hair thinning or bald spots.
Hair loss often has a greater impact on women than on men, because it's less socially acceptable for them and alopecia can severely affect a woman's emotional well-being and quality of life.
The main type of hair loss is androgenetic alopecia, or female (or male) pattern hair loss. In men, hair loss usually begins above the temples, and the receding hairline eventually forms a characteristic "M" shape; hair at the top of the head also thins, often progressing to baldness. In women, androgenetic alopecia begins with gradual thinning at the part line, followed by increasing diffuse hair loss radiating from the top of the head. A woman's hairline rarely recedes, and women rarely become bald.
There are many potential causes of hair loss, including medical conditions, medications, and physical or emotional stress.
Almost every woman eventually develops some degree of female pattern hair loss. It can start any time after the onset of puberty, but women tend to first notice it around menopause, when hair loss typically increases. The risk rises with age, and it's higher for women with a history of hair loss on either side of the family.
Female Pattern Hair Loss is usually not drastic enough to require a wig but can still be a traumatising experience for sufferers. Our Intralace System is a very effective way of disguising this hair loss whilst allowing the new hair to grow underneath. During a consultation, we can determine which type is best to achieve a natural look as the condition is managed.
Chemotherapy and Hair Loss
If you are having chemotherapy your hair loss may be gradual or dramatic: clumps in your hairbrush, handfuls in the tub drain or on your pillow. Whichever way it happens, it's startling and depressing, and you'll need a lot of support during this time.
The extent of hair loss depends on which drugs or other treatments are used, and for how long but regardless the experience can be distressing. The Intralace System can be used with a client’s progressive hair loss, even at 90%. Clients can wash, brush and care for the hair as it if was natural and it won’t affect lifestyle choices such as active sport and swimming.
Radiotherapy and Hair Loss
Radiotherapy can cause your hair to fall out, but unlike Chemotherapy, it only affects the area being treated. So if you are having radiotherapy to your head, you will probably lose hair from your scalp but the impact varies considerably depending on your dosage and other treatments.
For areas where the hair has become thin, we can fit Medi Connections which is a finer more lightweight hair extension made from real hair.
If the hair loss from Radiotherapy is more permanent then we can apply the Intralace System which can combine with your existing hair and allow you to manage it as you would normally do.
Periods of stress can cause Telogen Effuvium.
At any given time, about 85% to 90% of the hairs on the average person's head are actively growing (the anagen phase) and the others are resting (the telogen phase). Typically, a hair is in the anagen phase for two to four years, then enters the telogen phase, rests for about two to four months, and then falls out and is replaced by a new, growing hair. The average person naturally loses about 100 hairs a day.
In a person with telogen effluvium, some body change or shock pushes more hairs into the telogen phase. Typically, in this condition, about 30% of the hairs stop growing and go into the resting phase before falling out. So, if you have telogen effluvium, you may lose an average of 300 hairs a day instead of 100.
Telogen effluvium can be triggered by a number of different events, including:
- Major physical trauma
- Major psychological stress
- High fever, severe infection or other illness
- Extreme weight loss
- Extreme change in diet
- Abrupt hormonal changes, including those associated with childbirth and menopause
- Hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism
- Iron Deficiency
- Some medications
Because hairs that enter the telogen phase rest in place for two to four months before falling out, you may not notice any hair loss until two to four months after the event that caused the problem.
Telogen effluvium rarely lasts longer than six months, although some cases last longer. We can use Medi Connects for a more cosmetic cover for minimal hair loss or our Intralace System offer a more permanent solution for more widespread hair loss.
Many new mums are surprised to find themselves shedding more hair than usual in the first few months after giving birth, but it's perfectly normal.
Usually, about 85 to 95 percent of the hair on your head is growing and the other 5 to 15 percent is in a resting stage. After the resting period, this hair falls out — often while you're brushing or shampooing it — and is replaced by new growth. An average woman sheds about 100 hairs a day.
During pregnancy, increased levels of estrogen prolong the growing stage. There are fewer hairs in the resting stage and fewer falling out each day, so you have thicker, more luxuriant tresses.
After you give birth, your estrogen levels take a tumble and a lot more hair follicles enter the resting stage. Soon you'll have more hair coming out in the shower or on the brush. This unusual shedding will taper off and your hair will be back to its pre-pregnancy thickness about six to 12 months after you give birth.
If you’re feeling self-conscious duringthe recovery period we can offer a number of temporary solutions to restore your confidence until your hair recovers.
An undiagnosed thyroid disorder can sometimes be the underlying cause of hair loss, including the condition Chronic Telogen Effluvium, also known as Diffuse Hair Loss. Such disorders are relatively common, particularly amongst older people, but when the symptoms of the illness are only mild it can go undiagnosed and untreated for some time.
Although rare, some women find that a deficiency in zinc or iron causes a generalised thinning of the hair across the whole scalp. In addition, malnutrition through extreme dieting can slowly lead to generalised hair loss.
Scalp psoriasis is a common skin disorder that makes raised, reddish, often scaly patches. It can pop up as a single patch or several, and can even affect your entire scalp. It can also spread to your forehead, the back of your neck, or behind your ears.
Scalp psoriasis itself doesn’t cause hair loss, but scratching a lot or very hard, picking at the scaly spots, harsh treatments, and the stress that goes along with the condition can lead to temporary hair loss. Fortunately, your hair usually grows back after your skin clears
Hair breakage and thinning can result from excessive brushing, while some colourants may have the same effect. In addition, hairstyles that exert considerable pressure on the hair for long periods of time may lead to traction alopecia.