I decided to post this Q&A as a result of so many recent emails regarding hair loss, both premature and non-genetic. There are many unknowns, but I do know that with job losses on the rise, an increase in sickness and more potential economic woes, there is one definite culprit you may be able to blame for the loss of your mane.
I’ve always had really thick hair, but about a year and a half ago it began thinning out. I’ve been using hair-thickening shampoo and vitamins for a few months now, but I’ve seen no changes. Is this a “phase” that will pass, or can something be done to correct this? – Joshua
Hair-thickening shampoos and vitamins are great ways to slow down the inevitable process of hair loss. However, in your case it seems that there may be a deeper issue. The most common reason for non-genetic hair loss can be the result of stress. Telogen efflivium is a physical or emotional stress related to severe weight loss, a death in the family, and, for many college students, exams. The hair typically grows back after the stressful situation has passed, although this can take months.
Something else to consider is that an unbalanced diet can weaken hair follicles because your body is not getting the appropriate dosage of vitamins, minerals, and nutrients. Make sure your diet includes vegetables, fish, and white meat to strengthen and promote growth of your hair follicles. Also eat foods containing iron, vitamin B3 (niacin), potassium, and inositol, all important to healthy hair growth. If none of these suggestions seem to solve the problem, see a physician.
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