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Hair loss and baldness may not seem like such a big deal, it’s a natural process that affects a lot of people and besides, hair is just there to look pretty right? Fortunately, our hair has more purpose than you may think. It can act as a warning signal to notify us of something wrong inside the body and any disruption in hair growth patterns should be addressed.

Not all forms of hair loss are the result of genetics or old age, in fact, excessive hair loss or unusual hair thinning can sometimes be a symptom of a disease, especially if you have always had healthy, thick hair.

Gluten Free

Coeliac Disease

Coeliac disease is a condition of the small intestine where a reaction to gluten causes inflammation in the lining of the gut. This stops the gut from working properly and absorbing foods properly and causes symptoms including abdominal pains, tiredness and weight loss. Another common symptom is hair loss. Coeliac disease has been linked to alopecia areata (an autoimmune hair loss condition where the body’s immune system mistakenly attack the hair follicles) but thinning hair and hair loss could also be a result of the nutritional deficiency caused by the disease itself as it can cause malabsorption of vitamin B12 and folate (pernicious anaemia).

Malnutrition

Malnutrition occurs when the body is not given enough nutrients to sustain normal function. Extreme dieting or problems with the body’s digestive and absorption processes can lead to hair loss through malnutrition, resulting in telogen effluvium and diffuse hair loss. Depending on which vitamins, minerals, and nutrients are lacking, many different symptoms can occur but iron, protein, biotin, sulphur, silica, B vitamins and zinc are especially important to hair health.

Cushing Syndrome

Cushing’s syndrome develops if your body makes too much cortisol. Cortisol is a hormone which is made by the adrenal glands. Symptoms usually develop gradually, and so the diagnosis may not be clear for some time. There are various causes, and complex tests are needed to find the root cause of the excess cortisol. The syndrome itself won’t cause hair loss but if Cushing syndrome is the result of a non-cancerous tumour on the adrenal gland, it can also produce excess amounts of androgen which can lead to hair loss. Other symptoms include high blood pressure, facial hair in women, muscle weakness, tiredness, low libido, excess thirst and periods may become irregular or stop in women.

thyroid-diagram

Thyroid Diseases

The thyroid gland produces hormones that help control metabolism and growth. If the thyroid is overactive (hyperthyroidism) or underactive (hypothyroidism), the body’s metabolic rate will become imbalanced, resulting in sluggish functions of major bodily systems. If the hair growth lifecycle is affected, thinning hair or hair loss can occur.

Systemic Lupus Erythematosus

Systemic lupus erythematosus, commonly called Lupus, is a chronic disease that causes inflammation in various parts of the body and affects about three in 10,000 people in the UK. Symptoms vary but the most common are joint pains, skin rashes and tiredness. In some instances the inflammation can interfere with the hair growth lifecycle, resulting in thinning hair or temporary hairloss.

Female Pattern Hair Loss ConsultationWhat Should You Do?

Sudden hair loss is never a good sign but the main problem with disease-related hair loss is that other symptoms may be rare.  If you’re the type of person who’s happy to accept their fate rather than look into the cause, a bad hair day might be the least of your worries.

In cases where hair loss is a symptom rather than a condition, the shedding can generally be cleared up once the cause is addressed. This can occur naturally within a few months for some cases, though if it is more long-term or permanent – for instance where a temporary hair loss condition in someone with a genetic predisposition has triggered permanent Male or Female Pattern Baldness, then there are various options for hair loss treatment courses.

Unfortunately, in a lot of cases, people experiencing thinning hair tend to make a self-diagnosis and high-tail it to the supermarket to pick up the latest herbal remedy for hair growth. Not only are they wasting their money on a product that probably isn’t clinically proven to treat hair loss, they’re avoiding dealing with a potentially much more a serious condition.

Prompt professional diagnosis is needed if you do notice a sudden increase in hair fall. A medical professional will be able to rule out any hidden medical disorders. Usually, once the underlying medical condition is treated, the hair loss will stop and hair growth supporting products may help to improve hair strength and quality, as well as promoting the maintenance of normal healthy hair growth.


The Belgravia CentreThe Belgravia Centre

The Belgravia Centre is the leader in hair loss treatment in the UK, with two clinics based in Central London. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the UK or the rest of the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which are the largest collection of such success stories in the world and demonstrate the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time for our hair loss helpline or to arrange a free consultation.


Bald ChimpThe unexpected death of Cinder the hairless chimpanzee at the St. Louis Zoo, Missouri, USA is being investigated by Zoo officials.

Cinder was 14 years old and suffered from alopecia universalis. The death is likely to be unrelated to that condition. She had recently recovered from a cold.

“Cinder’s unusual appearance never affected her relationships with the other chimps” said Curator of Primates Ingrid Porton.

The full story and photograph is reported in STLToday.com.

Related pages:
Belgravia on Alopecia
Experiences of women with Alopecia
Alopecia prognosis and treatment

hypnosis for hair lossHypnosis may play a beneficial role in the outcome of alopecia areata according to a study published in the International Journal of Clinical and Experimental Hypnosis. Hypnotherapy is a holistic form of medicine thought to improve a person’s health from the inside and out.

“Not only is hypnotherapy beneficial for those suffering from hair loss, but it can even improve the patients’ conditions both physically and mentally,” the authors of the study wrote.

The study, which included 28 participants between 15 and 66 years of age with severe alopecia areata, were given hypnotherapy sessions every two to three weeks and asked to practice self-hypnosis exercises at least twice a week. They were monitored over a six month period but during that time seven participants dropped out of the study due to lack of motivation. Along with hypnosis therapy for hair re-growth, the participants were given therapy to help reduce stress.

The results showed a significant decrease in the stress and anxiety levels of all participants however only 12 of the 21 participants showed significant improvement in hair growth. Interestingly though this included four participants who had alopecia totalis.

“Results demonstrate that hypnotic interventions may ameliorate the clinical outcome of patients with alopecia areata and may improve their psychological well-being,” the authors concluded.

Hair loss is more dynamic than you might think. Even the healthiest individual with no evidence of hair loss in the family can be subjected to the devastation it can cause.  Alopecia areata is a highly unpredictable condition but has been linked to the presence of stressful events in the period 6 months up to one year before the outbreak of the disease and appears to be more prevalent in people who are less able to deal with stress.

Alopecia areata, a condition that affects about one person in every thousand, is an organ-specific autoimmune disease which means, for one reason or another, the hair follicles come under attack by the body’s own immune system. The result is sudden, patchy hair loss on the scalp or body, usually starting with one or more, round, smooth bald patches. In extreme cases it can lead to complete baldness of the scalp (alopecia totalis) or even loss of all body hair (alopecia universalis).

Many people can identify that an increased level of stress can cause a higher chance of experiencing hair loss. For those suffering from alopecia areata, it`s a vicious cycle. Not only can the cause be due to stress, but so can the side effects. Other than the physical loss of hair, alopecia areata doesn`t affect any other part of a person`s health, but it can be socially debilitating which is enough to cause even more severe distress.

Dr. Elena Dimitrova, hair and scalp specialist at the Belgravia Centre says stress management is an important part in the treatment of alopecia areata.

“It has been proven that a couple of sessions with a psychiatrist can be beneficial in the treatment of alopecia areata. Individual therapy can help to pin-point the trigger so that problem can be addressed and the condition can hopefully be reversed,” Dr. Dimitrova said.

“Hypnosis is used to insert some other ideas because when you’re subconscious you can accept ideas you otherwise might not. Hypnosis could possibly be beneficial as part of a treatment course program.”

However, the study revealed treatment was unsuccessful in nine participants and five of the 12 successful participants experienced severe relapses in the four month to four year follow up period.

“Alopecia areata is an autoimmune disease. Stress compromises the autoimmune system but controlling stress may not be enough,” Dr. Drimitrova says.

“It is not harmful to try hypnosis but the main treatment for alopecia areata is steroid injections or MINOXIDIL.”

Related Info

Alopecia Areata – Condition and Treatment Information

Success Story: Female Hair Loss & Alopecia Areata – Total Regrowth

Extra-Strength Minoxidil – For Stubborn Hair Regrowth

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Wikipedia Says There’s No Treatment for Alopecia Areata

Alopecia Areata in Women – Don’t Suffer in Silence

Alopecia Areata Cleared up in Most Cases

What Are the Causes of Hair Loss in Women?If you had the power to stop and reverse your hair loss, would you? Hair loss is a common issue that can hold a different meaning for every individual.

There are lots of men who will be happy to tell you that baldness is a sign of virility or even that, “Bald is beautiful!” Very few women however are not distressed if they experience excessive hair loss and many cover it up with hairstyles, makeup, hats or scarves.

Others choose medications – particularly in the case of female pattern hair loss which is a permanent condition but can usually be easily be managed with on-going treatment– or hair replacement systems, or sometimes even surgical procedures to deal with the problem.

However not all forms of hair loss are permanent. So how do you know when and if you should do something about it?

Let’s take a look at some of the temporary conditions and what can be done to correct them.


Temporary Hair Loss:

Chronic Telogen Effluvium / Diffuse Thinning

Diffuse thinning is frequently seen in women. It is not the type of hair loss where you wake up in the morning and your hair is gone. Rather it is the kind that sees extra hairs in your comb, a few more in the sink and will eventually cause your hair to become noticeably thinner each time you look in the mirror.

Chronic Telogen Effluvium, as diffuse hair loss is also known, results in a general thinning all over the scalp and a detailed clinical history must be taken as there are a number of factors that could be linked to the condition. Diet should be checked for adequate intake of nutrients, clinical investigations should be made for thyroid, haemoglobin and hormonal problems; stress may also be a contributing factor.

Treatment for Diffuse Thinning once the underlying cause has been identified and dealt with, has produced many encouraging regrowth results as can be seen in our Success Stories.

Telogen effluvium

Telogen effluvium is a form of diffuse hair loss many women experience, especially after giving birth. It can be brought on by emotional distress, such as a death in the family, or after a physical stress, such as a high fever, sudden or excessive weight loss, nutritional deficiencies, surgery, or serious illness. It causes thinning hair all over the whole scalp.

Normally, the hair goes through cycles of growth (lasting about two or three years) and rest (lasting about three or four months). During anagen (growth), hair grows about half an inch each month and when it reaches telogen (rest), the hair strand falls out and a new one grows in its place. Most people shed 50 to 100 hairs per day and this amount of hair loss is considered normal and does not cause noticeable thinning of the scalp hair.

However telogen effluvium causes the timing of the resting (telogen) phase to be reset. A couple of months later, too many strands fall out at the same time resulting in overall hair thinning and the sufferer who by this stage, may find it difficult to pin-point a cause, is left in a panic. Hair typically grows back once the condition that caused the hair loss corrects itself, but it can takes months.

If the stress was a one-off, then telogen effluvium will often correct itself,Leonora Doclis, senior hair loss specialist at The Belgravia Centre’s flagship clinic notes. “However, treatment for the loss of hair can help to minimize the damage, particularly if there is a tendency toward female pattern hair loss, whilst the body is dealing with the crisis.”


Other Causes of Hair Loss in Women

There are a number of things that can prompt increased shedding and affect the condition of the hair, such as having inadequate protein or iron in your diet. This is often seen with fad diets, crash diets, and illnesses, such as eating disorders like bulimia and anorexia.

Illnesses like diabetes and lupus can also cause hair loss as a side effect, as can some prescription medications used to treat a number of unrelated health issues including gout, arthritis, depression, heart problems and high blood pressure. Taking birth control pills also may result in hair loss for some women.


Causes of Baldness

Instead of thinning, some people develop bald patches.

Traction Alopecia

This can occur if you regularly wear certain hairstyles, such as ponytails, braids, dreadlocks or if you use tight rollers. Hair loss typically occurs where hair is pulled tightly but if the pulling is stopped before there is scarring of your scalp and permanent damage to the root, hair usually grows back normally. The problem is that when the hair starts to thin, most people cover it with weaves or add hair extensions until the condition gets so bad that very little can be done.

If the hair starts to thin and becomes an issue for the person, instead of adding artificial coverage they should consult a professional,” Leonora recommends. “At least that way they can be educated on hair styling if that is what the problem is.”

The hair loss may also be linked to female pattern hair loss in which case it’s best to catch as early as possible. “If the follicles have shriveled and the area has gone smooth, then it’s very unlikely the condition can be reversed,” Leonora explains. Treatment for Traction Alopecia is available and a personalised plan can be formulated to address simultaneous hair loss conditions should two, or more, be present at the same time.

Traction alopecia should not be confused with trichotillomania, which is a obsessive condition in which people have an irresistible urge to pull out their hair, from their scalp, their eyebrows or other areas of their body. Hair pulling from the scalp often leaves them with patchy bald spots on their head, which they may go to great lengths to disguise. No specific cause has been found for trichotillomania but psychiatrists regard trichotillomania as a psychological disorder and treatment will usually involve therapy. Trichotillomania sufferers have also been known to eat the hair that they pull out – this is a condition called Trichophagia.

Alopecia Areata

In alopecia areata, hair loss usually occurs in small, round, smooth patches on the scalp, but hair loss can crop up on any area that has hair, including the eyebrows, eyelashes and beard. It is a condition that might cure itself or might progress, possibly even leading to complete baldness over the head (alopecia totalis) or even over the whole body (alopecia universalis), however both of these cases are extremely rare. No-one knows much about what causes alopecia areata but it is classified as an autoimmune condition and can be triggered by stress.  People who develop the condition are generally in good health but some may have other autoimmune disorders such as a thyroid condition.

They are of similar nature, so the genetic tendency is always there,” Leonora says. “For instance, psoriasis is a condition where the immune system attacks the skin, but in alopecia it’s the hair.”

The hair will frequently grow back by itself with no treatment or if not there are effective Alopecia Areata treatments that help to regrow hair lost from moderate cases of patchy hair loss.

The rule of thumb is that if it hasn’t grown back in six months, then it’s time to consider treatment,” Leonora advises.


Effective Treatment for Hair Loss

Minoxidil DropperMost of the time, in the conditions mentioned above, the situation will correct itself and the hair loss will stop. Unfortunately however, this is not always the case and the problem won’t go away by simply combing and pinning the hair to hide the loss or wearing a headscarf.

There are plenty of miracle cures on the shelves to choose from but there only two options (for women) that are clinically proven, and approved by the FDA, to be the best hair loss treatment products. These are of course minoxidil and the HairMax LaserComb.

Whilst not a proven treatment for hair loss, it is usually recommended that women use a herbal supplement to complement one or more of the proven treatments. A supplement will supply the body with a number of vitamins, minerals and nutrients to ensure healthy hair growth. No supplement has been proven to effectively stop hair loss or generate new growth but they work to improve the strength and quality of the hair.

The effective treatment of female hair loss requires a combined approach that tackles all possible causes. A professional treatment course aimed at halting the shedding and encouraging regrowth should start with a diagnosis of the problem by a hair loss specialist nurse along with a discussion and a search for contributory lifestyle and health factors. On-going monitoring and advice is important so that progress can be checked and the treatment can be adjusted if necessary. With a combined, professional programme, women’s hair loss can often be stopped and often reversed.


The Belgravia CentreThe Belgravia Centre

The Belgravia Centre is the leader in hair loss treatment in the UK, with two clinics based in Central London. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the UK or the rest of the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which are the largest collection of such success stories in the world and demonstrate the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time for our hair loss helpline or to arrange a free consultation.


Related Stories


Alopecia areata sufferer Julia Crittendon has written a book in hope it will offer encouragement to other female Alopecia Areata sufferers, after she found no literary or any support other than her family when she was diagnosed seven years ago.

Her recent self published book, “Metamorphosis: Inspirational Stories of Women Living with Alopecia”, charts the experiences of 22 women as the dealt with hair loss and what it’s like to be a bald woman.

Bald is beautifulAutoimmune hair loss

Hair loss is not a male-restricted domain, it can affect up to 40 per cent of women and alopecia areata specifically, can affect as many as one person in a thousand at some time in their life and spares no regard for age or gender.

It is a condition of hair loss which falls into the category of autoimmune diseases, which means for one reason or another, the body’s own immune system mistakenly attacks the hair follicles. The result is rapid and patchy hair loss, usually starting with one or more small, round, smooth bald patches on the scalp which can, in extreme cases, progress to alopecia totalis (total scalp hair loss) or alopecia universalis (complete body hair loss).

Alopecia areata is an autoimmune condition which, with monitored treatment, can see results. However there is no prognosis to determine its success.

If hair loss is still in the patchy stages there is better chance of regrowth,” trichologist Leonora Doclis said. “Very often it grows back spontaneously by itself but if it hasn’t after six months it might be worth considering treatment.”

Psychological impacts

Despite the statistics, baldness in women remains a very hush-hush issue but the impact cannot be written off as mere vanity.

For all sufferers the condition can be a shocking and traumatic experience,”says Leonora.

A study on the psychosocial impact of alopecia areata found that the condition causes dramatic and devastating emotions in patients, which can negatively affect their self-esteem, body image and self-confidence.

Sometimes doing something about it might be enough to make you feel better,” Leonora explains. “But it is discretionary and sometimes people need further help when general family support isn’t enough. In these cases I would recommend counseling.

The psychological impact can be heightened in women because of social pressures on them to be attractive.

People are still hiding from it,” Julia from Mansfield, Ohio said. “These women are standing up to what was meant to destroy and depress them and are turning it into positive, productive energy so that the next woman who loses her ‘crown and glory’ won’t fall victim to what society deems as ‘normal’.”

Wig‘Take me as I am’

The women who contributed to the book described it as a therapeutic journey. Jenn Pendergrast from Florida who was diagnosed in 2006 said she has finally accepted that she is totally bald.

“It was actually the first time I put my story into words and I cried the entire time I was writing,” she said. “It felt awesome to put all that had happened into words for others to read.

Netherlands resident Tamara Cramer Bornemann, who also contributed to the book, was diagnosed with alopecia areata when she was five years-old. “I only wore a wig once, when I was about seven years-old, and I didn’t feel too good about it,” she said. “So from that moment I went through life without a wig. The teenage years were pretty difficult because I wanted to be normal. In my 20s I felt in bloom and enjoyed life.”

Julia said it took her five years before she went bald in public. At one point she tried wearing a $3,000 wig but these days she shaves her head. She recalls telling herself before her first outing, “This is me, take me as I am.”

(Images courtesy of arianne… at flickr)

Related Articles

Alopecia Areata Condition and Treatment Information   |   Alopecia Areata – Cleared up in Most Cases    |   My daughter has alopecia areata – what can be done?


Circ The Belgravia Centre Hair Loss Treatment for Alopecia Areata

The Belgravia Centre

The Belgravia Centre is the leader in hair loss treatment in the UK, with two clinics based in Central London. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the UK or the rest of the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which are the largest collection of such success stories in the world and demonstrate the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time for our hair loss helpline or to arrange a free consultation.


 

Has anyone ever told you wearing a hat all the time leads to baldness, or do you think if there’s no sign of hair loss on your mother’s side you’ll be safe? Hair loss is a condition that can cause a lot of sleepless nights and with so many myths surrounding the issue it can be hard to get a straight answer to these old wives’ tales and get to the bottom of what can be done to prevent and treat the loss of hair.

Here to debunk the myths and lay down the facts are Dr. Elena Dimitrova and trichologist Leonora Doclis, both experts in hair and scalp care.


Bald old man

True or false?
Hair loss is an old man’s ailment

False
There are many different types of hair loss and none of them are limited to the elderly or men in general. Alopecia areata, traction alopecia, trichotillomania, pseudopelade, and diffuse hair loss are just some forms of hair loss that are seen frequently in women and sometimes children. Yet the most common form of hair loss is male and female attern baldness which can affect up to 80 percent of men and roughly 40 percent of women.

“All the hair loss sufferers I see think they’re too young for this to be happening to them,” Leonora said. “However, male and female pattern baldness are progressive conditions and can begin as early as puberty.” Still, baldness is not imminent if treatment for the condition is taken early enough.

 


True or false?
Hair loss is inherited from the mother’s side of the family

False
Hairloss, in the majority of cases, is a hereditary condition in which the gene can be carried on both sides of the family.

“In 1946 an expert claimed premature baldness, before the age of 40, may be linked to the mother’s side,” trichologist Leonora Doclis said, “but this was disputed shortly after. There was no research to support the dispute, it was merely a suggestion.”

It wasn’t until recently that two genetic variants were identified that can be inherited through either parent. If these two variants are present, along with the gene which has always been recognised from the mother’s side, the risk of baldness, in men at least, increases sevenfold.

“Male and female pattern hair loss is polygenic,” Leonora said. “The tendency can come from either side of the family and can even skip generations. If your father is bald it does not necessarily mean you will go bald but your chances are significantly higher.”


True or false?
Does blow-drying cause hair loss?Excessive washing and blow drying causes hair loss

False

Regular hair care and maintenance such as washing, combing, dyeing and blow-drying will not result in hair loss. It is good hygiene to wash hair frequently and whilst dyeing and blow-drying can damage the hair itself by pulling on it and burning, it will not cause hair to stop growing.

“High heat from blow-drying will result in dry and brittle hair but not hair loss,” Dr. Dimitrova said. “Using heat protecting serums will prevent this.”

If you’re worried about the amount of hair you see in the sink or your comb after washing or combing, take heed in the fact that shedding about 100 hairs a day is normal. If you think it could be more, take the DIY hair loss test.


Balding man

True or false?
Stress causes hair loss

True
Diffuse thinning and telogen effluvium are forms of hair loss which are directly caused by stress. These conditions are characterised by an overall thinning of the hair on the scalp when certain hair follicles prematurely stop growing and enter into the telogen (resting) phase before falling out after about three months.

“There are many things that can cause hair loss,” Dr. Dimitrova said, “such as thyroid problems, polycystic ovarian syndrome, severe illness, fever and medication.” Acne treatment such as Roaccutane, Omeprazole (used to treat dyspepsia, stomach ulcers and reflux) and most anti-cancer medications can all cause hair loss.

In cases of male and female pattern baldness (the most common form of hair loss), stress will not cause hair loss. It is a condition where its sufferers carry the gene which will eventually cause them to lose hair but there are a number of factor which may trigger its onset. Stress could be one of these. Other triggering factors could include hormones (which is why hair loss can sometimes occur as early as puberty or as late as post-menopause), physical trauma, infection and even smoking and other chemicals.


True or false?
Wearing tight braids, ponytails or buns causes hair loss

True
Traction alopecia is a hair loss condition that is caused by excessive amounts of tension on the hair shafts which can damage the hair follicle. Over long periods of time under these circumstances, Traction Alopecia will cause the production of hair to slow down and finally stop growing all together. Early treatment for this condition is vital if natural regrowth is to occur.

“All hair loss problems have to be treated at the right time, that is, early,” Dr. Dimitrova said.


Do hats cause hair loss?

True or false?
Hats and caps cause hair loss

False
Though wearing a tight fitting cap or hat can interfere with blood circulation to the hair follicles, there is no scientific proof that they are capable of causing hair loss.

“This myth comes from the pattern of hair loss which is most likely to be seen on the crown,” Leonora said. “I’ve also heard myths about water and high pressure when washing your hair but of course these are not true causes for hair loss.”


Tried and true hair loss treatments

With literally hundreds of hair loss products on the market today, the truth of their claims can be as difficult to verify as the myths stated above. Mousse, gels and shampoos all promising to help hair grow thicker, supplements and all other types of potions claiming to be the miracle cure and increase hair growth are all simply scams with no scientific evidence. These potentially unsafe remedies are targeted at people who are desperately seeking a true solution.

The fact is there are only two FDA approved treatments and one FDA cleared device for hair loss which are medically and scientifically proven to stop hair loss and promote regrowth. It’s time to stop worrying about hair loss and sifting through the shelves for a cure when we already have one – or technically three. More information on HAIR LOSS TREATMENTS.

Did you know..?

British men in th 17th century were told to slap on some chicken dung to keep from going bald! Thank goodness we’ve come a long way since then.

(Images courtesy of J Wynia, malias and Steven Fernandez at flickr)


Related Articles

Mythical Hair Loss Treatments

Skull Expansion – Does a Big Head Mean a Bald Head

The Hair up There: Pollution Linked to Baldness

Tooth Infection Linked to Hair Loss

Lifting the Lid on Hair Loss

Is it a myth that nothing can be done about hair loss?

Name: Jay

Belgravia Centre VictoriaQuestion: I am a male aged 26 and losing hair at a fast rate. I was so concerned that I visited a clinic that advertises in the paper (not yours) and was shocked when they told me the cost would be £1200 for six months treatment. When I completed one of your online diagnostic forms I found out your costs are lower compared to other companies I have enquired with.

Does this mean the treatment isn’t as good? To be honest I felt I was being ripped off at the first centre I visited as the guy was a bit pushy and that also put me off. Can you help as I am nervous and quite sceptical even though it was a friend who mentioned your name?

Answer: When costs are low, the first thing that most people naturally think is that the product purchased won’t be as good as a more expensive option. In the case of Belgravia’s hair loss treatment courses this is not the case and I will explain why.

It’s an unfortunate fact that many of the hair loss organisations in the UK aim to make as much money as possible with little effort. Most of the centres do not offer the medically proven treatments for hair loss as they don’t have the medical facilities to do so (pharmacy / medical staff). These facilities take a lot of time, money and effort to set up and in the case of a pharmacy, need to be overseen by certain regulatory bodies.

The fact is, as well as having all of these facilities, which ensures we are able to provide the optimum level of treatment and service, Belgravia genuinely aims to make the products offered as reasonable as possible to the consumer. We’re not looking to make maximum profits from individual patients, but prefer to help a higher number of people at lower costs; this is why Belgravia has the largest client base of any single medical hair loss centre in Europe.

We guarantee that the Belgravia Centre offers the most effective hair loss treatment courses available whilst ensuring safety. These treatment courses include the medically proven treatments for hair loss specially combined to suit the individual, treatment course boosters and other services for which you can find more information on the hair loss treatments page.

In November 2008 the Belgravia Centre recorded its first set of video diaries from a patient using a specialised Belgravia combination treatment course – we believe his results to be the best for hair loss ever recorded on video – you can view his videos here – hair loss video diary. Our site also features hundreds of success stories that are updated and added to on a daily basis. They include comments and before/during treatment photos of Belgravia Centre treatment users. Our Facebook Page is also inundated with frequent wall posts from happy patients.

If you would like to arrange a free consultation at the Belgravia Centre to begin the process of hair loss prevention please contact us by message ot call the centre on 020 7730 6666.  Alternatively, you can complete our online diagnostic form for mail-order if you are unable to visit the centre.

It may seem bizarre that a tooth infection could cause hair loss but according to research, if you’re like the one in every thousand who suffers from seemingly random bald patches on your scalp or even your beard, eyebrows and eyelashes, you may need to consult your dentist.

In most circumstances hair loss is genetic, in fact an estimated 80 percent of cases are hereditary. However, sudden patchy hair loss with no apparent cause may be due to alopecia areata – an enigmatic autoimmune condition. Alopecia areata can be triggered by a number of factors and new research reveals a tooth infection may be one of them.

ToothacheTooth infection and alopecia areata

The study conducted by the professors at the University of Grenada uncovered a close relationship between tooth infection outbreaks and the presence of alopecia areata. Doctor Elena Dimitrova of the Belgravia Centre says it is possible that alopecia could be connected to dental infection.

Alopecia areata is an autoimmune disease and there are a number of factors that could cause the immune system to weaken. If the tooth infection were extreme it could have an effect on hair loss,” Dr Dimitrova said.

It is understood that alopecia areata occurs when white blood cells mistakenly attack the hair follicles, weakening them to the point where hair growth can no longer occur. When a tooth becomes infected, white blood cells work overtime to attack and destroy the infection. These cells can sometimes migrate to nearby cells, such as those found in the hair follicles.

The association of alopecia areata and tooth infection is often detected close to the affected area. Hair loss may be seen in the beard, eyebrow and neck area, on the crown or lower portions of the scalp. In about 50 per cent of alopecia cases patients will experience spontaneous hair regrowth without any treatment within a year, but the likelihood of total regrowth diminishes as the severity of the condition increases. A study reported in the European Journal of Dermatology also estimates that seven to 10 percent of patients may experience more extensive and chronic forms of the disease.

Treating alopecia areata

In light of this recent discovery, many dentists are now being trained to look for sudden patchy hair loss in patients experiencing tooth infections. The good news about infection-induced alopecia is that, because a cause is linked, it can be treated and reversed. If the symptoms are caught in early stages of development, both the infection and hair loss can be easily treated.

Whilst science has not yet demonstrated a cure for alopecia, there are some options available to help treat the symptoms (that is, sudden patchy hair loss). A course of steroid injections into the scalp can help in cases where the bald patches are quite small. The treatment involves several injections about 1cm apart (however the number of injections is often limited by pain) and is repeated every four to six weeks.

However, Belgravia patients have found alopecia areata treatment based around regular, non-invasive applications of high strength minoxidil – a topical drug available from our clinics’ in-house pharmacies – to be as effective, if not more so than these injections.

This approach also provides a much more comfortable alternative, with clients frequently seeing significant regrowth results within three to six months of starting their bespoke treatment course, instilling a renewed sense of confidence.


Circ - The Belgravia Centre Treatment for Hair LossThe Belgravia Centre

The Belgravia Centre is the leader in hair loss treatment in the UK, with two clinics based in Central London. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the UK or the rest of the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which are the largest collection of such success stories in the world and demonstrate the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time for our hair loss helpline or to arrange a free consultation.


(This blog is by guest contributor John Allsopp). As a man, I didn’t think I was going to like Breaking the Silence on Women’s Hair Loss. I mean, I’ve read Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus: How to Get What You Want in Your Relationships
, so I’m comfortable being uncomfortable when the book jacket talks about “women who struggle with hair loss and its accompanying emotional toll and shame”. The third sentence in chapter one is “Fairy tales, myths and legends abound with hair central to the story”.

women's hair loss

It turns out, though, that Hoffmann herself, a ‘seasoned medical journalist and editor’ also seems uncomfortable with that and soon gets into her stride talking about what causes hair loss and what you can do about it. Journalists aren’t flowery by nature, they like to report the facts as they see them. That’s their job. I love it.

So, I think what’s happened is the flowery stuff has been forced there by the publisher in order to satisfy their model of what sells the books to women. That’s fine, just don’t get the impression the book deals only with the emotional and social side of hair loss. There’s a load of great information in here that I haven’t seen elsewhere.

I’ve taken a step back. And that’s very slightly annoying 

 

Hoffmann gets serious with hair loss, providing, for example, the biggest list I’ve seen anywhere of reasons to see your doctor first, from Lupus to statin drugs and SSRIs like Prozac with hair loss as a possible side effect.

There’s advice on who to talk to and how to build a ‘hair loss team’ around you. The largest chapter is probably the one covering a wide range of hair loss treatments. Then it’s hair nutrients, wigs and finally she reaches the book’s basic conclusion which feels like: you may improve your hair but you probably won’t get back your teenage years. You need confidence in you, and your hair isn’t you. The major battle isn’t your hair, it’s you and your attitude towards it.

It’s in the treatments part of the book, however, that I think it falls down. Basically, I’ve read the book and I learned a whole lot about hair loss causes and treatments. But I still don’t know what to do.

If I have hair loss, why should I have to learn about it? 

 

What I really wanted was for Hoffmann to write a book titled “John’s hair loss, what it is and what he should do next”. I’ve spent maybe four or five hours reading the book and I know more about hair loss, I’m better equipped, I have a more rounded appreciation. But I’m nowhere nearer making a decision about getting my hair back. In fact, whereas before I was looking for a hair loss solution, now I’ve reverted to wondering whether I should just accept me for who I am. I’ve taken a step back. And that’s very slightly annoying.

But isn’t that how life is now? We’re suffering under a weight of choice. Want broadband? You’ve got to understand it before you can buy it. Want a mobile phone? May your God help you. Want something to calm your nerves? First, you have to deal with more information than you can shake a stick at, and nowadays the first place people turn is the Internet. Anyone, even stupid people, can write articles on the Internet.

I have a different view. I think there will be a backlash against the herd, against stupid people you don’t know or trust making stupid online comments. Against DIY. Against information overload. I think the pendulum will swing back towards the expert.

If I have hair loss, why should I have to learn about it? Surely I just want to turn up to an expert, get it treated, walk out and get on with what I want to do.

Our life is just the hours we get given. We shouldn’t waste them. Do what you want with your life. Learn about hair loss if that’s what you really want to do. Otherwise, consult a hair loss expert, get it sorted to the best of their ability (and let them worry about that), then get on with your life. Hair loss can’t stop you.

(Pic courtesy Dawn Ashley on Flickr, some rights reserved)

Name: Mina Peshawaria

Question: My daughter is 13 years old and I noticed a small bald patch on her scalp at the front in February this year. Her patches (she has about 10) have grown since then and she has suffered great hair loss.

She is having treatment privately and her Dermatologist started her on a steroid cream (Dermovat) which she is still using once a day. Because her patches had not stopped growing and I had noticed new ones last at the beginning of this month, the Doctor has now prescribed Steroids to be taken orally for one month. I am really concerned and desperate and want her problem treated. For about 3 weeks she was also using Minoxin, Topical Solution in spray form which contains Minoxidil 2%. The dermatologist has told me that this is no good and asked me to stop using this. Please can you suggest any treatment, especially on how to get her hair growing back. It is very difficult for her to cope at school with this problem as she cannot hide the bald patches and other children do tend to isolate her.

Please help.

Answer:  Continue with your recommended treatment and if you do not get any results then it is time to try another form of treatment. Your Doctor may have said that Minoxin is not good because it has a very low dose of Minoxidil to be effective. Generally, some Doctors do not think highly of Minoxidil in treating Alopecia Areata while some use it extensively.

For treatment of mild Alopecia Areata Belgravia uses a high strength minoxidil very successfully, but the more severe the case the more unlikely it is that treatment will be effective. Minoxidil and steroids in any form are both used to treat Alopecia Areata. Your daughter can also use a hair replacement unit to hide the bald patches while waiting for her hair to grow back.

Always bear in mind that Alopecia Areata is a condition where there is a chance the hair can grow back on its own at any time due to the fact that the hair follicles are not dead, just dormant.

More information on ALOPECIA AREATA

Alopecia Areata
Click on the photo above to see regrowth results from the use of an alopecia
treatment course from Belgravia. Alopecia Areata is a condition that can affect
anyone at any age. There are effective treatments available to stop mild
Alopecia but success from treatment for more severe Alopecia is less likely.