All About Hair LossWhy Am I Losing My Hair?

The scalp is composed of 3 basic layers: the epidermis, the dermis, and the subcutaneous layers. The hair is surrounded by blood vessels, nerves, muscles, glands, and millions of cells and like any other part of the body, it is supported by the blood. As the blood brings oxygen and nutrients into the papilla area, it promotes cellular activity, and as the cells reproduce, they build a flexible protein called Keratin (hair).

Hair forms and grows inside a protective encasement called the follicle. It is lubricated by a sebaceous gland that secretes oil which coats the hair for smooth growth and provides luster and sheen.

The average person has approximately 100,000 hairs on their head. This will vary depending on the color and texture of the hair. However, because of the stages of growth and fall-out, it is normal for a person to lose a few hairs each day.

The hair begins its growth in the Anagen (growth) stage which lasts between 2 and 6 years producing healthy hair. The next cycle is the Catagen (dormant) stage. In this stage, lasting 2-6 weeks, hair begins to pull away from the root. Then the hair goes into its final cycle known as the Telogen (fall out) stage. Telogen hair is programmed to fall out and this cycle will last approximately 4 to 8 weeks. In this stage, the telogen hair pulls away from the root area as new anagen hair is being produced,which pushes the telogen hair out of the follicle as another anagen cycle of growth begins.

What Are the Causes of Hair Loss?

There are many contributors to hair loss. Among them are: scalp bacteria, stress, sebaceous build-up, poor nutrition, slow cellular activity, genetic baldness (which can affect both men and women), hormonal imbalance, and nervous disorders. In many cases, hair loss may be caused by a combination of these factors, but genetic pattern baldness is by far the dominant contributor, accounting for nearly 95% of all hair loss in men and also affecting millions of women. Though pattern baldness is treatable it cannot be cured, because it's genetically predetermined.

For people with pattern baldness, their genetic make-up has programmed their bodies to store an excessive amount of the male hormone testosterone. When this testosterone mixes with enzymes and other chemicals, it is converted to dihydrotestosterone (DHT). DHT is toxic and forms a waxy-like gel or blanket around the hair root area, constricting the blood supply. The end result:
"Where there is no blood, there is no life. It's that simple."

As blood flow is constricted, the papilla is deprived of crucial blood supplying nutrients. This slows down cellular activity--causing the cells to produce a thinner, poor quality hair. This hair is then vulnerable to other negative influences that can further increase hair loss.

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