If Your Hair Is Unhealthy, You Might Be Too
If you notice problems with thinning hair or hair loss that occurs in patches, your first thought may be to blame some product or process you tried recently or to put it down to stress. Those are common causes for hair loss, but it is always worthwhile to check with a doctor because hair loss, especially sudden or patchy hair loss, can indicate a medical problem that needs treatment. Don’t wait and hope it just grows back on its own – check with your dermatologist to rule out any underlying medical conditions.
You don’t necessarily have to feel sick to be sick. Some illnesses sneak up on you. You may feel a bit more tired than usual or have a general sense of unwellness but no clear cut, obvious symptoms.
What Are Some Medical Conditions Cause Hair Loss?
Being run down in general isn’t doing your hair any favors, but hair loss is a symptom of some specific illnesses that require medical care. While there are medical reasons such as ringworm or an infection of the scalp, your hair can warn you about more serious illness.
- Lupus is a serious autoimmune disorder more likely to people of African, Asian or Native American heritage than those of European descent, but all ethnic groups can develop lupus. While men can develop lupus, the overwhelming majority of sufferers are women. The symptoms are vague, and hair loss can be the first one that is really noticed. It is treatable, but a serious condition nonetheless.
- Polycystic ovarian syndrome is a hormone imbalance that can have a disastrous effect on a woman’s fertility. Everyone has both male and female hormones, but with PCOS, women have too much androgen, which can cause hair loss similar to male pattern baldness as well as facial hair growth. Genetics play a role in this condition so women with a mother or sister who have PCOS are at increased risk.
- Hyperthyroidism is mainly known for causing symptoms such as a rapid heartbeat, nervousness, shaky hands, weight loss and jitteriness, but it also causes thinning hair. The hair may become fine and soft and start falling out. Hyperthyroidism mostly affects women. Hypothyroidism occurs when the body produces too little thyroid hormone resulting in a slow metabolism, weight gain, feeling cold, tiredness & fatigue as well as changes in hair texture to greater coarseness and dryness with shedding and breakage.
- A crash diet is not a disease, but if you are on a severe diet and start to lose hair as well as pounds, you’ve gone too far and it’s worth talking to a doctor about a healthy way to shed the weight without losing your hair and otherwise damaging your health.
Hair loss is not always just a hair problem. If your hair starts to fall out, you may find it is a symptom of a serious problem that needs to be treated by your doctor. For more details about hair loss check out Dr. Weaver’s Black Hair Loss Guide: How to Stop Thinning Hair and Avoid Permanent Baldness on Amazon.com