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Hairfall is a common issue with most women, including me. And we are always looking for remedies on how to prevent and stop hair fall easily.
After all, long and healthy hair are a prized possession for many of us. And we don’t like seeing our precious hair fall out every time we wash or comb our hair.
But often, there could be an underlying health condition that is causing our hair fall or hair loss. Before we jump to the into common reasons for hair fall and how to treat them, we need to understand our hair growth cycle first.
The 3 Stages of Hair Growth Cycle
- Anagen Phase: In this phase, the hair grows actively from the hair follicles under the scalp. It can last anywhere between 3-7 years with an average ½ inch growth per month.
- Catagen Phase: This is a transitional phase that lasts about 10-14 days where the hair stops growing and detaches itself from the follicle.
- Telogen Phase: Also called the resting phase, the hair that is released from the follicle now waits to fall out while new hair starts forming below it.
The telogen phase lasts about 3 months. And, at any given time, around 10% of the hair on your scalp is in the telogen phase.
Due to this, you will lose around 50-100 strands every day which is considered normal. Hair fall occurs when too many hairs are abruptly pushed into the telogen phase. And hair loss occurs when new hair doesn’t grow back after the telogen phase is over.
5 Common Causes Of Hair Fall And How To Treat Them.
Here are the top 5 causes of hair fall in women and how to treat them all.
The top cause of hair fall in most people is the lack of nutrients. Our hair requires several vitamins, minerals and protein to keep growing.
And let’s be honest, most of us live on junk and processed food that are in no way nutritious. If you are deficient in even one of the nutrients, your hair will start falling out and won’t grow back. This results in hair thinning and loss of hair volume.
Essential Nutrients for Hair Growth.
While there are several nutrients required for hair growth, here are the key nutrients that are vital for preventing hair loss.
Our hair is primarily made up of keratin, a type of protein. So without sufficient protein intake, your hair will not grow.
Vegetarians and vegans are at a higher risk for protein deficiency since a plant-based diet is not the best source of protein. Some of the best sources of protein are meat, fish, eggs, hemp seeds, soybeans, dairy, nuts, legumes and pulses.
2. Vitamin B-Complex
Of all the vitamins in the B-complex group, the most important vitamin for healthy hair growth is vitamin B7 aka Biotin. It is also nicknamed as Vitamin H i.e Vitamin Hair as it is essential for carrying oxygen and nutrients to the scalp.
You can get Biotin from whole grains, almonds, seafood and green leafy vegetables. There are many Biotin supplements sold in the market for hair growth. While there are no major side-effects, talk to a doctor before taking one, especially if you have a medical condition.
3. Vitamin A, C and E
All these vitamins are powerful antioxidants that help reduce oxidative stress caused by harmful free radicals. Vitamin C also boosts the synthesis of collagen, a structural component in hair and skin.
Foods rich in Vitamin C: Bell peppers, citrus fruits, strawberries etc.
Foods rich in Vitamin A: Carrot, spinach, milk, eggs.
Foods rich in Vitamin E: almonds, spinach, avocadoes.
Iron is essential to carry oxygen to the cells through the blood. And anaemia can result in severe hair fall.
Foods rich in iron are spinach, dark chocolate, legumes, seeds, organ meat, quinoa etc.
Hormones play a key role in healthy hair growth, so if your hormonal levels are imbalanced, you may experience hair fall and even hair loss.
PCOS and thyroid are often the main cause of hormone-related hair fall in females. Apart from these two, pregnancy and menopause can also play havoc on your hormones leading to severe hair fall.
A balanced diet without excess sugar and processed foods along with regular exercises can help regulate your hormones levels. If you have other symptoms like irregular periods, acne or excess body hair, visit a gynaecologist.
He/she can help you figure out the root cause of your hormonal issues with some tests and guide you on how to treat them. They can even suggest appropriate supplements to help boost hair growth.
Another leading cause of hair fall is constant stress. High levels of cortisol (the stress hormone) can prematurely push your hair into the telogen phase causing hair fall.
This condition is known as Telogen Effluvium. In this condition, the hair usually grows back but continuous stress can keep pushing more hair into the telogen phase.
Figure out the root cause of your stress and try eliminating it. Proper sleep and doing meditation for a few minutes every day can also help reduce stress.
The best way to reduce stress is by finding an activity you like that distracts you from the cause of your stress.
If hair loss runs in your family, there are high chances your hair fall is caused by your genes. Female Pattern Baldness is a condition that is hereditary and can slow down your hair growth as you age.
There is not much you can do to prevent genetic hair loss. But you can try and minimize the effect as much as you can with a healthy diet and hair growth treatments.
Some illnesses like typhoid, scalp infections, alopecia areata, thyroid, etc can cause hair loss. Sometimes, even the medicines taken to treat an illness can result in hair fall as a side-effect.
This type of hair fall is usually temporary and your hair will return to normal once the treatment is over.
For e.g. Chemotherapy leads to complete hair loss in cancer patients, but once it is over, their hair grows back. Always consult with your doctor before trying any hair growth treatments or supplements in such cases.
How to Stop Hair Fall Immediately.
If you noticed, the common causes of hair fall are all internal conditions related to your health. So unless you start working on fixing those problems, your hair fall is not going to stop anytime soon.
To maintain the volume and thickness, you need to figure out how to eat and stay healthy along with proper hair care habits to stop your hair fall completely.
Yes, regular hair oiling and masking can strengthen your roots and stimulate hair regrowth. But if your body is lacking the essential nutrients, these treatments won’t work well on its own.
So to stop your hair fall immediately, start working on fixing these root causes rather than buying all the anti-hairfall products in the market.
I will be sharing a few DIYs and products in the next post to help boost hair growth and control hair fall by nourishing the roots. So stay tuned.
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