Hair loss is a natural daily occurrence. Every hair on your head adheres to a genetically programmed schedule that includes growth, resting and shedding. On the average, 50 to 150 hairs are lost each day, but most hair re-grows because the follicle remains. When shedding significantly exceeds growth, baldness occurs.
Learn the Hair Loss Facts. In 95% of patients with hair loss, their hair loss is inherited genetically, not due to some hair loss myth. These hair loss genes make hair follicles sensitive to the hormone dihydrotestosterone or DHT. DHT slowly accumulates in the hair follicle and the follicle begins to shrink, choking out the hair. This begins as thinning hair, since the hair follicle begins producing only a very thin short hair. Eventually the hair follicle dies, no longer producing a hair, and permanent baldness occurs.
Misconception No. 1:
“I can tell how much hair loss I will have by looking at my mother’s father.”
Fact: While baldness is inherited, there is no known combination of genes passed on from either your mother’s or father’s side of the family that causes hair loss. The more hair loss that exists in your family, the more likely that you too will experience thinning hair. Your closest relatives will be your best predictor for future hair loss – father, brothers and uncles.
Misconception No. 2:
“I’m less likely to go bald because my hair grows so fast.”
Fact: Rapid hair growth may be a sign of good health, but it has no bearing on the likelihood of hair loss.
Misconception No. 3:
“Brushing my hair is better than combing.”
Fact: It was once believed that hair loss was due to poor circulation and that brushing or massaging stimulates circulation in the scalp improving blood flow and nutrition to the follicles. There has never been any scientific research to support this. As it turns out there’s no major difference between the scalp circulation of a person with hair or without.
Misconception No. 4:
“Wearing a ball cap caused me to lose hair.”
Fact: Headwear, such as hats and helmets, has no effect on hair loss. However, certain hairpieces are anchored to the scalp-by being woven into existing hair. This method of attachment can cause a kind of hair loss called “traction alopecia” in those areas.
Misconception No. 5:
“It’s important for me to use special shampoos to cleanse or unclog hair follicles.”
Fact: Over the years, many products have claimed to help remove excess sebum and oil from the scalp, and thereby improve hair growth. There has never been any scientific proof that flushing follicles prevents hair loss, or that “clogged” follicles are the cause of hair loss.
Misconception No. 6:
“Blow-drying makes my hair more likely to fall out.”
Fact: Over-drying or drying with too high a heat setting can make your hair more prone to breakage and can change its manageability and texture. However, blow-drying does not cause hair loss so it doesn’t really matter how you dry your hair.
Misconception No. 7:
“If I eat a diet that is high in animal fat it won’t affect my hair loss.”
Fact: A diet that contains high quantities of animal fat can lead to an increased concentration of testosterone in the bloodstream, increasing your risk of hair loss. Remember that, in the body, testosterone is converted to dihydrotestosterone (DHT), a hormone that has been proven to be a trigger responsible for shrinking hair follicles in the scalp.
Misconception No. 8:
“The more often I shower and shampoo, the more hair I’ll lose.”
Fact: Showering and shampooing will not cause your hair to fall out. However, the shampoo you use could. Most shampoos contain sulphates such as Sodium Laural Sulphate or Ammonium Laural Sulphate. Sulphates are an irritant and can cause you to lose your hair more rapidly. It is best to use an all natural sulphate free shampoo free from artificial or chemical preservatives.
Misconception No. 9:
“Bad lifestyle decisions won’t accelerate my hair loss.”
Fact: Drinking, smoking, poor diet can all accelerate hair loss.
Misconception No. 10:
“Using steroids won’t cause me to bald prematurely.”
Fact: Use of anabolic steroids increases the levels of male hormones that have been linked to baldness. If you have a genetic risk of thinning hair, starting steroids can accelerate hair loss in as little as 3 to 6 months. Sometimes, hair will re-grow after steroid use ceases, but, in many cases, the hair loss is irreversible.
Misconception No. 11:
“Stress caused my hair to fall out.”
Fact: Typical daily stress usually won’t cause hair loss. More likely, severe and traumatically stressful experiences or even crash diets, have been linked to hair loss. Hair loss due to stress is most likely to occur if you have a condition called alopecia areata. This usually results in small patches of hair loss, not the typical male-pattern or female-pattern varieties.
Misconception No. 12:
“There are a lot of Hair Transplant Surgeons in the USA.”
Fact: There are about 100 full time hair restoration surgeons practicing exclusively hair transplant surgery. About 70 of those practicing full time are board certified by the ABHRS (American Board of Hair Restoration Surgery).