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LISTEN HAIR These are the six things you need to do now to prevent hair loss

Updated: Jan 5

There are many myths and forever-changing trends regarding hair care which can get very confusing and complicated.

Keep it Simple

The bottom line is shampooing is important to remove dirt, grease and dead skin cells from the scalp and hair, and conditioning your hair after shampooing nourishes the fibres. Incorporate a weekly deep condition/hair mask treatment especially if you dye or style your hair regularly.

How frequently you wash depends on your hair and scalp type - there is no one size fits all. Indeed if you have dry scalp you can easily worsen dandruff, flaking and dermatitis by over washing your hair.

Don’t over-do it

One of the commonest causes of hair loss, frizziness and breakage is over styling = chemicals such as dyes and relaxers destroys the protective cuticle of the hair, exposing it to further damage. A damaged cuticle allows water to enter the core of the hair fibre and if heat styling is then used on wet hair, these pockets of water will generate steam, expand and cause breakage along the hair shaft.

Extensions, weaves, braids, tight ponytails and man buns can all cause trauma to the hair and eventually lead to hair loss typically around the hair line as a result of prolonged and repeated pulling forces.

In the early phases this type of hair loss - also called traction alopecia - is reversible, but in the late stages the follicles scar and hair loss becomes permanent.

Ditch the Crash Diet

Hair follicle cells are the second fastest dividing cells in the body and require all the nutrients of a well-balanced healthy diet.

This includes lean proteins, good carbohydrates and fats, vitamins and minerals, but there is no one superfood for hair. As hair is not an essential structure for survival, the body does not prioritise the use of nutrients for hair growth.

Nutritional deficiencies and crash diets are a common cause of hair thinning and shedding.

Don’t stress about your tresses

Emotional and psychological stress is a major cause of hair shedding, also known as telogen effluvium.

However, because hair loss is a traumatic and stressful experience, this can itself drive further hair loss in a vicious cycle.

I recommend regular stress-relieving exercises such as yoga, meditation and mindfulness.

Nutritional deficiencies and crash diets are a common cause of hair thinning and shedding.

Watch your hormones

In women, hormonal changes can significantly impact hair growth.

Post pregnancy, menopause, polycystic ovarian syndrome and some forms of the contraceptive pill can all potentially lead to hair thinning and or shedding.

See your doctor if you suspect an underlying hormonal cause to your hair loss.

Speak up and get help

It is important to remember that there are many causes of hair loss and in order to get the right treatment and advice, the diagnosis needs to be established first, so see your dermatologist if your hair loss is getting worse or not improving.

As with most things, the sooner treatment is started the better the results.

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