If you start noticing more hair in your shower drain or on your hairbrush, it can be a cause for concern. If you look in the mirror and see a hairline that keeps moving farther back, you may feel upset or worried. If you feel bare patches on your scalp or areas where hairs suddenly seem few and far between, it can be easy to start freaking out and ask yourself in dismay, “Why is my hair falling out???”
It is not only an understandable question, but an important one. That’s because understanding the “why” behind your hair loss is the first step in doing something about it. At the Miami Hair Institute, every patient’s hair restoration journey begins with determining the reason behind their hair loss through a thorough, holistic evaluation. Knowing the cause of your hair loss allows us to develop and implement a course of treatment best suited to addressing your condition and restoring your hair to its full, robust appearance.
If your hair is thinning or falling out, there is a good chance it is for one of the following common reasons for hair loss:
By an overwhelming margin, androgenetic alopecia – pattern baldness – is the most common cause of hair loss in men and women alike. This hereditary hair loss condition is the culprit behind over 95 percent of hair loss cases, affecting over 80 million Americans every year. Androgenetic alopecia causes hair miniaturization, a phenomenon in which hair follicles become finer and thinner each time they go through the hair growth cycle. Eventually, those follicles die and fall out.
Immune System Issues
Sometimes, the immune system doesn’t work as it is supposed to and winds up attacking the body’s normal functioning, including the hair growth cycle. Alopecia areata is a hair loss condition that involves just such an assault on hair follicles by the immune system and white blood cells. This attack shrinks the follicles and subsequently slows down hair growth. In turn, this leads to sudden hair loss in quarter-sized patches that can progress across the scalp quickly and unpredictably.
More extreme cases of alopecia areata include alopecia totalis (Complete loss of hair on the scalp) and alopecia universalis (total loss of hair on the scalp and body). Hair follicles are not destroyed by alopecia areata and can typically regrow as soon as the inflammation caused by the condition recedes.
Though not as common as androgenetic alopecia, alopecia areata still affects two percent of Americans or roughly 6.8 million people.
Your hair follicles may be strong, but they’re not indestructible. If you apply constant tension and stress to them, they will eventually experience damage, weaken, and ultimately die and fall out. This condition is called traction alopecia.
The primary causes of traction alopecia all relate to how hair is styled, treated, or worn and include:
- Wearing unnecessarily tight pigtails, ponytails, or braids for extended periods.
- Trichotillomania, a psychological disorder characterized by constant (and often unconscious) hair twisting, plucking, or pulling.
- Hairstyles that require hair to be tightly wound for a prolonged period.
- Hairpieces and weaves that must be affixed/clipped to the hair.
- Helmets, particularly compression helmets like those worn while playing football, snowboarding, skiing, horseback riding, etc.
Stress, a traumatic event, or a lack of sufficient sleep cause changes to our body chemistry that can have a range of adverse health effects, including damage to our hair follicles that can lead to thinning or hair loss. Fortunately, such “shock loss” is almost always a temporary phenomenon.
Hormone imbalances are a common contributor to hair loss. Several hormones can impact the growth, strength, and health of our hair. The most frequent problems with hormone imbalances that can contribute to hair loss and shedding include thyroid imbalances such as hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism and the dramatic hormonal changes that accompany menopause and pregnancy.
No Matter Why You’re Losing Your Hair, The Miami Hair Institute Can Help
Our world-renowned hair restoration physicians at the Miami Hair Institute diagnose and treat hair loss cases no matter the underlying cause. Through advanced hair restoration surgical techniques, technology, and alternative non-invasive treatments, we can help patients suffering from hair loss regain their hair and self-confidence.
To receive your personalized evaluation and treatment plan, contact us online or call our office directly at 305-925-0222.