While Christmas for children is usually the most wonderful time of the year, for adults things can be somewhat different. And for those who let the festive season and all the expectation that comes with it really get to them, a surprising side-effect could be hair loss.
This is because certain forms of hair loss are directly influenced by stress. Every year, many people are affected by a temporary hair loss condition called Telogen Effluvium, which manifests itself as a generalised thinning from all over the scalp. The tell-tale signs are a sudden increase in hairs in the shower tray and a glance in the mirror that tells you something is amiss.
Hugely stressful time
Christmas can be a hugely stressful time. For every person who loves the festive season, there is another who can’t really afford it or who finds the period depressing because it reminds them of lost loved ones, or even just makes them think that Christmas just isn’t as good as it once was.
Things like over-commercialisation can play a part in blue moods, too, as can the all-pervading sense that December 25th has to be the most amazing day ever for you and your family and that the responsibility to make this happen is all yours.
Then there’s Christmas parties, extra work duties to allow you to take a week off, late nights causing a lack of sleep, plus the depression that often follows excessive drinking. Not to mention the changes to your diet – often festivities will cause you to miss regular meals then binge on convenient ‘hangover food’.
What might be a good idea is to take a moment right now to pause and put things into perspective. Web MD, writing about Christmas depression this month, suggest keeping expectations modest, trying something different (such as Christmas dinner at a restaurant), and going easy on yourself.
Keeping stress to a minimum plays a vital part in being able to enjoy Christmas, and it really could help to prevent hair loss. Telogen Effluvium – which affects a lot more women than men – can be treated with a bespoke hair loss treatment course and usually clears up on its own in around six months. But it can also last a lot longer: after 12 months, it is reclassified as Chronic Telogen Effluvium or Diffuse Hair Loss. This can also be treated.
The body can be greatly affected by multiple external influences – some good, some bad. Stress, smoking and poor diet all fall into the latter camp, and can all impact on overall health and, in turn, the scalp’s ability to maintain “business as usual.” Whilst the odd late night or Christmas pig-out is unlikely to do any harm, it is interesting to know how getting into a regular pattern of these types of bad habits can affect the hair.
What is especially surprising is that there is some evidence that factors such as smoking, poor diet and stress can even exacerbate the genetic hair loss conditions Male Pattern Baldness and Female Pattern Hair Loss in those who already have them. If can also accelerate the onset of these hereditary forms of hair thinning in people with the ‘balding gene’.
If hair loss is an issue and you fear that Christmas stress could make things worse, it’s probably a good time to visit a hair loss specialist for a diagnosis, some advice, and a quick lesson in how personalised hair loss treatment courses featuring clinically-proven components may help.
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.