If you landed on this site, you are probably seeking quality information about your receding hairline or thinning hair. The “Phime.org Team” is here to breakdown every aspect of hair loss and provides readers with the best education about hair loss treatments available on the market. When you start losing your hair, there is sudden urge to research what may be causing it and what you can do to stop and treat it.
First, remember you are not alone and millions of people are experiencing some form of hair loss in their life. The good news is Phime.org has an extensive amount of information for identifying, preventing, and treating receding or thinning hair. We have already done your homework and have filtered all of the so called “cures” and “potions” down to the “what really helps” for hair loss suffers of most conditions. As of today, there is still no true “cure” for hair loss but on the bright side there are regimens that can prevent and regrow lost hair. That is where we come in! Phime.org will continue to be your “go-to” resource for proven treatments until the day there is a scientific way to prevent and restore hair. Today there are three FDA approved products that clinically prevent or regrow hair minoxidil (Rogaine), finasteride (Propecia), and hair loss lasers (HairMax & Theradome). However, just because a product does not have FDA approval does not mean it can’t produce similar results. There are numerous alternative treatments that get overlooked that may become a secret weapon in your own regimen. Why do we mention the word “regimen” several times? You will learn from this site that hair loss is a constant battle and formulating a regimen (based on your condition) will be your weapon to fight hair loss and regrow your hair back. You can relax and take advantage of all the data we have collected for you to “take action.” Phime.org’s overall mission is to help hair loss suffers discover the best treatments to combat hair loss. The long-term vision is to continually update our readers with advanced treatments to improve, maintain and regrow hair until we have a real cure.
Before you get too down about losing your hair, here is an interesting fact. All humans lose hair everyday. However, it is not uncommon to lose up to 100, yes “100” hairs a day. Most people tend to believe that if they are noticing more hair in their hairbrush, pillowcase, or sink that he or she is automatically “thinning” or “going bald.” Everyone loses hair every but this is part of the cycle that we will explain below about how hair grows and the phases of growth. Now if you are losing hair but the areas of the scalp are still visible, you are not alone! You are experiencing some form of hair loss that is also experienced by millions of others across the world. The good news is Phime.org is here to help cover all possible options to battle your condition for the ultimate goal of improving, maintaining, preventing, and most importantly regrowing hair.
Hair Growth 101
A good starting point before taking action against hair loss is to understand how hair grows. There are 3 main stages of hair growth: The “anagen,” “catagen,” and telogen phase. Each and every follicle on the scalp has a life cycle. Once the full cycle of each hair follicle is complete, the process starts over and a new follicle starts to grow. On average, the human hair grows around 1/2 inch per month and six inches per year. Let’s review the stages of hair growth below:
The anagen phase is the most important phase of growth for hair loss sufferers. This stage is truly defined as the growth stage. Our genetics determines the span of growth for each follicle. In theory, the longevity of the hair staying in the anagen phase influences the speed and length the hair will grow. One of the major reasons that the anagen phase is important to people with thinning hair is because during this phase, the cells in the papilla divide to produce new hair fibers (keratin), and the follicle plants itself on the dermal layer of the skin. The process of the follicle residing in the dermal layer is where the follicle receive their nourishment. Therefore, if the follicle are not being nourished by proper blood flow and nutrients, the follicle will become weak and thin or not grow at all. Overall, 85% of the hair follicles on the human head are in the anagen phase.
The catagen phase is triggered by the body’s way of signaling to end the anagen phase (growth phase). The catagen phase is referred to the transitional phase which allows the hair follicle to regenerate itself. During this phase, the hair follicle begins to shrink because the papilla detaches itself and “rests” cutting the hair off of proper blood supply and nutrients. The catagen phase lasts around two weeks and the follicles become 1/6 of their original length. This process causes the hair shaft to be pushed in an upward position. Although hair follicles are not growing in this phase, the length of terminal hair fibers increase when the follicle is pushed upward.
The telogen phase is referred to the resting phase of the hair follicle. During this phase, the follicles can go dormant or inactive for one to four months. Around 10 to 15% of hair on humans are in the telogen phase at given times. The epidermal lining of the hair follicle continues to grow as usual and can also populate around the base of the hair. The follicles temporarily anchor themselves in place to preserve the hair for its natural existence without taking away from the resources needed during the anagen phase.
Causes of Hair Loss
Male and Female Pattern Baldness:
Hair loss by definition is referred to “alopecia.” Alopecia does not necessarily mean thinning or complete loss of hair on the scalp. It actually is hair that is lost from head or the body. Below we will cover the most common causes of hair loss that affect millions of people every day. One of the most popular buzzwords of losing hair is associated with “male pattern baldness” or for short (MPB). However, this form of baldness is not the only type that people face since baldness can be associated with other causes as shown below in both men and women.
The skin is the largest organ in our human body. Each hair follicle resides in the skin and within the skin, we have oil and sweat glands all over our body. There are some people that experience severe form of cystic acne which can be related to the same hormonal imbalances that cause hair loss. In addition, on the male side, one of these hormones which is most feared by men is DHT. This hormone has been scientifically linked to be the cause of male pattern baldness since this hormone swamps the entire scalp which eventually causes the hair follicles to miniaturize. Seborrheic dermatitis is also another skin condition that can cause hair loss since the symptom of this condition is characterized by an excessive build-up of sebum which is the body’s natural skin moisturizer. With too much sebum present on the scalp, the hair follicle can become clogged, thus the follicle has a limited chance of growing with the natural environment it needs to grow efficiently.
Male Pattern Baldness (MPB):
Male Pattern Baldness is the primary cause of hair loss in all men. It is estimated that over 95% of men that are experiencing thinning hair can link the cause to MPB. The classic pattern of hair loss from this condition is a “horseshoe” pattern. The temples of the forehead and the crown or “vertex” of the hair becomes thin or eventually bald over time. Male pattern baldness is generally based on your genetic makeup. In the past, scientists believed the men that have the highest chance of going bald is solely dependent on the mother’s father side of the family. However, research is discovering that this theory may not be entirely accurate since several men that are experiencing hair loss have a grandfather on the mother’s side with hair. Male pattern baldness is estimated to affect roughly 40 million men in the United States. Among the 40 million, it is estimated the 25% of men will experience MPB by the age of 30, and 2/3 begin balding by the age of 60. Research also indicates that men have a 4 in 7% chance of receiving the the male pattern baldness gene. The root cause of MPB is believed to be a sensitivity to dihydrotestosterone (DHT) on the scalp. DHT is an androgenic hormone which is a body and facial hair promoter but adversely can affect the hair on top of the male head. When DHT affects the scalp, each hair follicle becomes too sensitive to this hormone which cause the follicle to lose blood supply and nutrients that are vital for growth. The follicle does not truly “fall” out with MPB, instead the hair growth phase (anagen) is shortened and within time the follicle becomes thinner and thinner. Eventually the hair follicle may completely go dormant and at this stage, fighting male pattern baldness becomes harder since the follicle has to be fully revitalized for any chance of regrowth. Some of the popular products to combat MPB are finasteride (Propecia) minoxidil (Rogaine), and even shampoo’s that contain ketoconazole (Nizoral). There are other numerous hair regrowth products but finasteride, minoxidil, and ketoconazole make up the core “big 3” products to treat male pattern baldness. In addition, saw palmetto is believed to reduce DHT production in men and is commonly referred to “Nature’s Propecia” since the supplement works a similar way in theory.
Research has linked some hair loss conditions from poor nutrition. A limited food intake and nutrient deficiencies can lead the thinning hair. Some of the nutrient deficiencies that have been linked to thinning hair are biotin, protein, zinc, and poor human iron metabolism. In addition, there are certain foods that contain a high amount of animal fats and vitamin A that can cause hair loss. The good news is vitamin deficiencies can be reversed with supplementing with the nutrient itself by a liquid or pill form which can be found in health food stores.
There are a few infections that have been known to trigger a loss of hair on the head and body. These infections include:
- Folliculitus– The infection and inflammation of 1 or more hair follicles.
- Demodex folliculorum– A species of a face mite. It is one of the parasitic/commensal mites.
- Tinea capitis– Referred as the “ringworn of the scalp,” a superficial fungal infection of the scalp.
- Secondary syphilis– Occurs approximately 4 to 10 weeks after the primary infection of syphilis. This phase of the disease involves the skin.
- Fungal infections– General fungal infections are caused by mycoses and environmental/psychological conditions can contribute to the development of fungal diseases.
Hair that is lost during chemotherapy is caused from drugs that are taken to fight cancer. The hair loss experienced by cancer patients is generally temporary. One of the most characteristic effects from chemotherapy induced hair loss is the regrowth. Some patients have reported that the color, texture, and thickness can change when the hair is growing back. Drugs such as doxorubicin, daunorubicin, paclitaxel, docetaxel, cyclophosphamide, ifosfamide, and etoposide have been known to cause sever hair loss. A good note to remember is chemotherapy hair loss is much different than an androgenic condition such as male pattern baldness. This form of hair loss in generally temporary and will regrow back on its own but there are some studies with patients using “juicing” recipe as a natural way to help regrow hair after the treatment is completed.
Everyone at one point in there life has experienced a high level of stress or even physical trauma. There are a few cases of hair loss as a result of some form of trauma. Traction alopecia is experienced by people that wear cornrows or ponytails which pull the hair down with excessive force. Also excessive use of heat styling, rigorous brushing, and rough scalp massage can damage the cuticle. The individual hair follicles can become weak and break which leads to a reduction in hair volume. Trichotillomania is condition that is caused by compulsive pulling and bending of the hair. This disorder usually begins around the onset of puberty and can continue though adulthood. Over time, if the hair is pulled frequently, permanent hair loss can happen if the hair roots become damaged. Telogen effluvium is also another cause of hair loss by traumas such a childbirth, surgery, poisoning, and sever stress. Telogen effluvium can cause a larger number of hair follicles to enter the resting phase of growth (telogen).
Sources: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hair_growth | http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baldness