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Hair falling out with every brush of the comb, a relentlessly retreating hairline-the loss of hair is often distressing, no matter what specific form or timetable it takes. Whatever the underlying condition, hair loss can transform your self-image for the worse, as it represents such a potentially profound and symbolic change in appearance. Even though it's mostly associated with older men, it can happen to women and younger men.
Whether it's a short-term issue having to do with medication side effects or an innate and permanent trend, hair thinning and loss can often be addressed or controlled with the right approach and the right products.
A wide variety of situations can trigger hair loss, from the hormonally dictated male pattern baldness to medication side effects. Acutely stressful situations can promote shedding; so can scalp infections, such as ringworm, and malfunctions of the thyroid gland. Hair loss may be temporary or permanent, and-although it's often connected to aging-can occur at any stage of life. Be sure to see your doctor to determine the cause of your hair loss.
It's worth setting all this in context: everyone typically loses a nice batch of hair every single day-on the order of 50 to 100 strands. In its normal growth cycle, hair is regularly replaced by new growth out of the parent follicle; the old strand is sloughed away. When the rate of that sloughing-away exceeds the rate of replacement, thinning occurs.
According to the American Academy of Dermatology, some 80 million Americans-men and women alike-contend with hereditary hair loss, which may also be called androgenic alopecia, male-pattern baldness, or overall thinning in women. In men, this commonly manifests as a receding hairline or a bald patch. In women, an early sign may be an expanding part that reflects general all-around thinning. Other disorders that can provoke hair thinning and loss include alopecia areata and cicatricial, or scarring, alopecia.
Consulting with a professional dermatologist is the best way to diagnose your hair loss-and to figure out the best way to manage it. Come up with a roadmap and then seek out those products that synchronize best with the approach.
You'll find here a great spectrum of hair regrowth and thickening products, from topical shampoos, conditioners, and oils, to nutritional supplements. These may be tools to incorporate into your existing hair-care regimen, or which may be used to replace those components inappropriate for the special situation of alopecia.
Remember that sensible personal-grooming and lifestyle practices are essential to fully addressing hair thinning and loss. Seek out hair products that are appropriate to brittle strands, and don't excessively wash or style your locks-routines that can worsen the problem. Again, a dermatologist's counsel is enormously helpful in this regard: you want all components of your self-care, from nutrition to cleansing, to reinforce the strength and vitality of your shafts and follicles.