Lifestyle

Could your mental health be the reason for your hair loss?

By Alex

What causes hair loss?

Hair loss can be caused by a number of different factors and there is not one defined cause. Your hair could be falling out for a number of different reasons, including hormones, genes, age and stress.

These are the four main factors within hair loss, however, certain aspects of your life can also have an impact on hair loss. Your lifestyle, including your diet, where you live, alcohol intake and how much you sleep can all play a part in your hair loss.

Sometimes it can be hard to determine why exactly you are experiencing hair loss, we’re going to take a look into hair loss and see if mental health could have anything to do with it.

Depression and hair loss

If you suffer from depression you could be experiencing other symptoms that include hair loss. Depression and hair loss are linked and depression can affect the quality of our hair, hair can become dry, and break very easily.

The physiological states of depression such as low mood, discouragement, low self-esteem and feeling drained can be a factor in reducing the hair growth phase, leading to hair loss.

Some anti-depressant medications such as Prozac can have side effects that cause hair loss. In some cases depression will not have an effect on hair loss, however, certain medications can play a part in hair loss. If you’re worried about the side effects of your medication talk to your GP about changing medication.

Anxiety and hair loss

If you suffer from anxiety you might experience hair loss, however, this is never the only symptom of anxiety and it is rare to experience hair loss if your anxiety isn’t severe.

Anxiety and stress are technically two separate conditions, however, they do overlap. The key issue between anxiety and hair loss is stress. In a lot of ways, anxiety is long term and persistent stress, which can affect the growth phase of your hair.

Anxiety can, however, cause trichotillomania, this is a habitual condition that is caused when a person is anxious and the person beings to pull our hair’s without even realising they’re doing this. If you continue to pull large quantities of hair out from your scalp this can lead to hair loss.

Chronic stress and hair loss

Stress plays a big part in hair loss and is one of the four main factors. Emotional stress can significantly slow, or even stunt your hairs normal growth cycle. Once the hair has stopped its growth cycle it lies dormant and eventually sheds after around two months.

Stress is a huge part of a variety of different mental illnesses including depression, anxiety and insomnia. In most cases, it is the stress that will cause you to lose hair. The most common type of stress-induced hair loss is telogen effluvium, which is not permanent and your hair can grow back.

Can my hair loss be treated?

Hair loss caused by mental health issues can in most cases be treated. The underlying problem of hair loss for most mental health issues is stress. Stress related hair loss, in most cases, stops it’s growth phase during a stressful period and lie dormant, causing the hair to shed. If the stress continues, the hair continues not to grow.

However, if the stress does stop your hair will resume its normal growth phase and after a month or so you’ll notice your hair loss would have stopped and new hair will begin to grow.

Other factors, such as side effects from medication can’t be stopped, however, it is a possibility that you can talk to a GP about changing to medications that have different, and maybe fewer side effects.

If you’ve been suffering with hair loss, which you don’t think will stop and would like some advice on possible treatments please contact us for a no obligation consultation. One of our hair loss specialists will be more than happy to look into your condition and find the right treatment for you.

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