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What Causes Alopecia?

When people hear the word ‘alopecia’, they usually associate it with the rare image of losing all bodily hair including the face and scalp in a short space of time.

The truth, however, couldn’t be further removed from this assumption. In fact, alopecia is incredibly common and comes in many varieties. Moreover, in the medical community, alopecia is an umbrella term that refers to all forms of hair loss.

In this blog, we’re going to look at the key forms of alopecia and their causes.

Male/female pattern baldness

The most common form of alopecia, pattern baldness, can be extremely stressful for either sex.

On the male side, pattern baldness is generally considered to be hereditary, with many health experts linking the condition to the overproduction of a particular male hormone. While rarely leading to a total loss of hair, the condition is known to affect half of all men by the age of 50.

For women, the underlying causes are less understood. Due to the fact that it can become more obvious once the woman has reached menopause, many speculate that the drop in female hormones are to blame, while others believe there is an element of hereditary influence.

What causes alopecia areata?

Although alopecia areata can occur at any age, it is most common in those aged 15-29. The condition is known to leave small areas of baldness that usually recover after a short period of time.

Those who suffer from auto-immune conditions such as hyperthyroidism, diabetes, or Down’s syndrome have a higher likelihood of suffering from the disorder – although many experts believe that there is a hereditary link, as in 20% of cases, a family member has previously suffered the same affliction.

Causes of scarring alopecia

Accounting for less than 10% of all alopecia cases, scarring alopecia, or cicatricial alopecia, is a condition that leads to the total destruction of the hair follicle, preventing any regrowth in the future.

Current medical consensus dictates that it is brought about through complications with other conditions including scleroderma, and lichen planus.

Anagen effluvium

This form of hair loss can affect the entire body, including the scalp and face. Those who have had to endure chemotherapy or other invasive forms of treatment for cancer are often left with the condition for some time after the treatment is finished, with hair starting to grow back after a few months.

In all cases, anagen effluvium is temporary, and does not automatically lead to total hair loss – in some cases, it is not even noticeable without close inspection.

Telogen effluvium

Another common type of alopecia, telogen effluvium is in most cases a temporary condition brought about through a variety of stimuli.

It exhibits itself through thinning, rather than pattern baldness, and often resolves itself within six months or so. Common causes of telogen effluvium included intense emotional or physical stress, short or long-term illnesses, changes in diet, medication or simply hormonal changes.

Get Help For Your Alopecia

You may find that some of these problems require medical support. However, we find that people often approach us seeking a more suitable solution .  Please feel free to view our service which helps men & women and looks completely natural – you can view our success stories complete with pictures.  If you are ready to speak to someone now, why not call us on 01706 620 353 or contact us online now.