Hair & Scalp Concerns
Male & Female Patterned Hair Loss
This is the most common type of hair loss that adults suffer with and is often referred to as patterned hair loss. Caused by an innate sensitivity to circulating & locally produced androgen hormones generated during puberty. Androgens influence and disrupt the growth cycle of scalp hair.
Patterned Hair Loss in males normally begins with regression at the front hair line. This kind of hair loss can start as early as late teens.
Female patterned hair loss (FPHL) is seen to start mostly in women 30+ however FPHL can be triggered as a secondary hair loss concern caused by other factors. In women (PHL) presents as diffuse thinning of hair starting with more scalp showing at the centre parting, without change to the position of the front hair line .
A trichologist can help you understand & manage your personal hair loss concern and help you slow hair loss so that you keep the hair you have for longer.
Post Partum Hair Loss
Caused by hormonal changes during pregnancy these affect the hair growth cycle. Increased levels of oestrogen and progesterone causes a woman’s scalp hair to stay in the anagen growth stage throughout the whole pregnancy preventing the normal cycle of hairs moving into the telogen shedding phase.
2 to 4 months after the birth/breast feeding stages, the mother’s hormone balance should return to normal. The hair that was retained during the pregnancy along with the normal number of cycling hairs move into the shedding telogen phase together. This causes short term excessive hair shedding. On average post partum hair shedding can be 2 to 3 time more than the amount of hair lost during the telogen phase before the mother became pregnant.
If spontaineous recovery doesn’t occur within 6 – 12 months, a trichologist can evaluate the hair cycle disruption and provide advice and support on how to restore the natural growth cycle.
Hair shedding/thinning (acute or chronic)
There are several identified causes of the whole head diffuse shedding hair loss disorder Telogen Effluvium (TE). A sudden acute incident of hair shedding when the the hair growth cycle prematurely moves into the shedding phase, or as the growth cycle reaches its end, shedding hair may not be replaced by new growth. The longer the disruption goes on for the more the hair density, volume and body is reduced. The scalp may become visible, and pony tail thinner.
There are multiple factors that can cause this kind of hair loss that a knowledgeable trichologist might consider to identify the root of the problem.
- Low iron/iron deficientcy
- Nutritional imbalance e.g. vitamin or mineral deficiency/toxicity
- Disruption to homeostasis caused by any kind of stress
- Imbalance in blood chemistry values that promote optimal hair growth
- Hormone imbalance: Puberty, PCOS, Birth control Pills, Perimenopause & menopause
- Thyroid conditions
- Exposure to endocrine disruptors e.g. found in plastics, household goods & hormone fed livestock
This kind of hair hair loss is reversible if identified and treated quickly.
A trichologist will be able to evaluate your problem, explain the causes to you so you can make an informed decision about solutions.
There are 6 types of as alopecia areata, all identify as the kind of hair loss known as autoimmune hair loss.
- Alopecia Areata/patchy hair loss on scalp
- Alopecia Totalis total scalp hair loss.
- Alopecia Universalis complete baldness from head to toe
- Alopecia Incognito diffuse hair loss
- Alopecia Barbe round bald patches in the beard
- Ophiasic Alopecia a think band of baldness in a horseshoe shape – starting at the hairline in front of each ear, meeting at the back of the scalp.
Typically, Alopecia Areata presents suddenly, developing due to inflammation at the root of the hair making it difficult for much-needed nutrients to feed the hair follicle.
A trichologist can evaluate your disorder and provide a treatment plan with solutions so that the hair cycle is given the optimal chance of recovery and spontaneous regrowth.
Age related hair loss
If you’ve noticed changes to your hair and are not doing anything different to normal, a trichologist can help you get to the root cause of your hair health disruption so that optimal growth is restored and maintained.
Age related hair changes are a fact of life, a reaction triggered by natural changes to metabolism. An outward sign of aging can be hair thinning or graying. There are several factors that can worsen this kind of hair loss e.g. a prescribed drug; there is a possibility that long term medication is no longer suitable for you due to recent age related changes or new medication has hair loss as a side effect, so exacerbates the problem.
A trichologist can evaluate your disorder and provide advice, so that your hair cycle is given the support it needs for optimal recovery and continued spontaneous hair regrowth.
Hair loss with scarring of the scalp as a side effect – the scars are not raised they are under the surface of the scalp. This kind of hair loss is often a symptom of underlying illness. Autoimmune illnesses such as Systemic Lupus Erythematosis, Discoid Lupus Erythematosis, and Lichen Planus commonly cause this kind of hair loss concern. When the stem cells in the bulge area of the hair shaft are damaged hair loss is permanent. Inflammation caused by underlying autoimmune disease is responsible for this damage.
Hair loss can be controlled so that scarring is kept to the minimum if this kind of alopecia is identified quickly by a trichologist and thoroughly investigated in collaboration with a medical professional. Scarring can be disguised with cosmetic camouflage, and surrounding hair preserved with ongoing use of a suitable treatment.
On-going trichological hair care, advice, and support is available with respect for and in collaboration with your medical professional if you are suffering from this kind of hair loss.
Hair shaft abnormalities
Hair shaft abnormalities such as beaded, twisted, flattened or fragile hairs are generally inherited and seen where hair fails to grow long. Generally this kind of concern is tricky to find as only a small % of scalp hairs present the defect.
Other hair shaft abnormalities that present as unruly tangled hair such as Woolly hair nevus and Uncombable hair are inherited. Hair is frizzy, uncontrollable, growing in multiple directions.
A trichologist can identify and provide advise about care of uncontrollable hair.
Hair in poor condition and split ends
Trichorrhexis nodosa otherwise known as split ends is caused by mechanical damage; tension, excessive heat and use of unsuitable tools or equipment.
Weathering is caused from harsh chemicals in hair products that have been carelessly applied.
Bubble hair from heat damage, if hair is damp when tools such as straighteners are used the moisture in the hair creates steam which escapes from the shaft by bursting through the hair cuticle, this leads to shaft damage.
There are unfortunately no treatments or products available that actually repair split ends, the best a product can do is mask the damage – hair cannot be repaired from the outside in. The only long term solution is a hair cut.
Dandruff – Persistant flaky scalp
Have you tried lots of dandruff shampoos to get rid of your itchy flaky scalp without success?
Dandruff is generally recognised as a sign of underlying scalp problems and is often experienced along with:
- Dry tight scalp – Pityriasis Simplex generally triggered by inflammation that presents with seborrheic dermatitis or pattern hair loss.
- Greasy hair – Pityriasis steatoides present when scalp is sensitive generally pairs with contact eczema and psoriasis.
A trichologist can provide you with information about a hair care regime & products that contain the correct active ingredients to combat persistent flaky scalp & other concerns.
A trichologist can identify this kind of alopecia – spontanious recovery to the growth & quality of hair should occur if styling methods are permenantly adapted.
Trichotillomania – the consequence of chronic physical pulling of hair shafts, believed to be an uncontrollable behaviour, a reaction that relieves emotional stress. Persistent pulling can lead to permanent damage to the hair follicles and scarring.
If signs of this kind of hair loss are seen in young children it may be due to subconscious behaviour e.g twisting rubbing hair when they are watching T.V. and not focused on their actions. Older children/youths presenting the condition should be encouraged to discuss their signs & symptoms – they may be consciously self-harming as a result of anxiety and feelings of low self-esteem.
A trichologist can identify this kind of alopecia and provide a prognosis to the suffer of what to expect if the behaviour continues. A treatment plan would include advice on who to speak to for support and guidance in dealing with compulsive obsessive behaviour.