Losing hair has been a problem for men and women since the dawn of time. Hair loss is not only a cosmetic problem, but it also can affect your social and emotional well being. Most people have trouble coping with hair loss. That’s why billions of dollars are spent each year in research and marketing of hair loss remedies. Till date there are no miracle cures to stop hair, except some expert’s advice that I would like to discuss in this article, you might want to consider preventing or stopping hair loss.
Your hair goes through a cycle of growth and rest. The growth phase of scalp hair, which is known as anagen, typically lasts for 2-3 years. During this time, a single strand of your hair grows about 1 centimeter (just less than 1/2 inch) a month. The resting phase is called telogen, which typically lasts three to four months. At the end of the resting phase, the hair strand falls out and a new one begins to grow in its place. Once a hair is shed, the growth stage begins again. Most people normally shed 50 to 100 hairs a day. Hair loss becomes a problem when the rate of shedding exceeds the rate of re-growth or when new hair is thinner than the hair that have shed.
The following tips can help you to keep your hair healthy and may minimize risk of hair loss:
Amino Acids: Arginine and cysteine are amino acids necessary for hair growth – your hair follicles need them to produce hair. Many people claim taking supplements strengthens their hairs and nails. You can buy these as liquid supplements at health food stores.
Biotin and folic acid: Be careful with these two B vitamins. Granted, you do need them for your hair growth, but most people get plenty of vitamin B from a normal diet. Unless you have too little because of another health condition, don’t load up on supplements. Too much biotin and folic acid can actually cause your hair to fall out. A general multi-vitamin can fill in any nutritional gaps without causing problems for you.
Cosmetic Aids: There are several cosmetic approaches that can make your hair look longer and thicker-at least temporarily. These hair additions are designed to be worn continuously for up to eight weeks. Both men and women can wear them while sleeping, bathing, and swimming . Hair additions can be applied several ways:
- Braiding: You can attach human or synthetic hair to your own hair with braids.
- Hair bonding: This technique requires gluing synthetic or human hair to your existing scalp hair.
- Hair irrigation: This popular approach involves hand-tying individual synthetic or human hair fibers to a crocheted web you wear on your scalp.
If you decide to try hair additions, be careful. While it is an easy way to hide hair loss, you could make matters worse. If your hair additions are too heavy or pull too tightly on your scalp, you can lose even more hair. Also, be sure to clean your natural hair and the hair additions properly to avoid scalp disease.
text1;">Gene therapy: Sometimes your own immune system attacks your hair follicle by mistake and causes your hair to stop growing or even fall out. Experts think they could correct the problem if they could find the genes responsible for this disorder. The goal of gene therapy is to replace the damaged genes or increase certain “good” genes that could stop this from happening.
At Cornell University, laboratory studies on animals show that gene therapy can cause hair growth. However, it hasn’t yet been tested on humans.
Prescription drugs: There are two FDA approved treatments for hair loss – Rogaine (Minioxidil) and Propecia (Finasteride).
Rogaine marketed by Upjohn Pharmaceuticals, is a topical lotion available in a regular and extra strength version which stimulates hair growth in both men and women. It was originally developed as a pill to treat high blood pressure, but it had an interesting side effect. It made hair grow thicker and longer. Although there are number of possible explanations, experts believe it works by increasing blood flow.
Propecia marketed by Merck, is a once a day oral pill which blocks the 5-alpha reductase enzyme that creates Dihydrotestosterone (DHT), the male hormone associated with thinning hair in men with male pattern baldness. Makers of the drug finasteride claim that it can increase hair thickness and length and prevent hair loss. Women should not use this drug. Studies show that pregnant women or women are planning to become pregnant, when exposed to finasteride tablets caused birth defects.
There are other similar drugs either on the market or in the development phase by major pharmaceuticals companies. Compresses, sprays, creams, and shampoos are available now and more are awaiting Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval.
Zinc: Zinc is a mineral necessary for good health. The recommended dietary allowance (RDA) is 12-15 milligrams (mg). Studies have shown that people experiencing hair loss often have low level of zinc. In addition, zinc lotions reduce the amount of oil on your scalp. In theory, this could unblock hair follicles, encouraging growth. However, there is no evidence that taking zinc or applying zinc to your scalp will encourage new hair growth. Keep in mind that too much zinc can actually make your hair fall out.
Other treatments: Devices that use electrical fields or energy wavelengths to stimulate hair don’t seem to work as well as other treatments and are quite expensive. They also have not been approved by the FDA.
Be careful trying anything your doctor hasn’t prescribed. Many unapproved treatments can cause serious side effects or interact dangerously with other medications.
The American Hair loss Council is a nonprofit organization that publishes objective information for consumers. They focus on surgical and non surgical treatment for hair loss. Call 1-888-873-9719 for more information or visit their website <www. Health-library.com/hairloss.html>. I believe you will find this piece of information useful to take care of your hair heath.