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The Roots of Modern Myths about Hair Loss

Rodolfo Valentino The Belgravia CentreOur ancestors had a number of quite exotic explanations (and cures) for hair loss, and cultures around the world still have a wide variety of beliefs about the cause of the condition. In the West, we might like to believe that in this modern, scientific age, our understanding of hair loss is entirely based on the facts – but the truth is that there are still many common misunderstandings about what can and can’t affect the growth of hair.

Popular myths about the cause of hair loss include wearing hats, washing hair too frequently or with hot water, or using too many hair products, whilst fictitious remedies involve standing on your head or cutting your hair. These incorrect assumptions are still prevalent in society, despite the clear lack of scientific evidence of their success.

Other theories, such as the belief that baldness is inherited along the female line or that losing a handful of hair every day is a sign of longer-term hair loss, appear to be more scientific than some, but are also entirely false. Although baldness is genetic, it can be inherited from both maternal and paternal sides of one’s family, and hair shedding is entirely normal – the only difference between those who suffer from hair loss and those who do not, is that in the latter case, new hairs replace those that grow out.

Urban legends

So where do these urban legends come from? In many cases, it is difficult to be sure. But the roots of some of these misconceptions are known:

  • The belief that cutting hair makes it grow back thicker comes from the perception that short hairs seem to be tougher and darker than long hairs. However, this is not the case – it is simply that longer hairs naturally taper towards the end, whilst short hairs have been shorn off and so seem rougher.
  • Confirmation bias seems to be the culprit behind the enduring myth that people lose their hair by shedding more of it. If you are already noticing a receding hair-line or thinning head of hair, you’re more likely to notice the hairs shed whilst showering or brushing, but this does not necessarily mean that there are more of them.
  • The connection between hats and hair loss was first made in the 1920s, when almost all men wore hats. In the days before male pattern baldness (Androgenic Alopecia) was properly understood, people assumed that male baldness was due to hat fabric rubbing on the scalp. Nowadays, this has been disproved by our increased scientific knowledge of hair loss conditions.

A better route to understanding baldness

Clearly, none of these common theories provides a factual or scientific basis for explaining, or treating, hair loss. At The Belgravia Centre, our techniques are wholly scientific, including expert advice, clinically proven medications and hair growth-boosting treatments that are proven to increase hair thickness and coverage in the great majority of cases. Have a look at some of our hair loss success stories for examples of people who have benefitted from our expert hair loss treatments.

To find out how we can help you to both prevent further hair loss and re-grow hair, simply message the centre or call us on 0800 077 6666 for a free consultation. Alternatively, you can fill in our online diagnostic form for a home-use treatment programme that we can post anywhere in the world.

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