Hair Loss Advice

Does alcohol affect hair loss?

By Alex

Most of us enjoy a glass of wine with our dinner, or a pint of beer when the football is on and occasionally overdo it on a night out with friends. Something we’ve all experienced. But did you know that an excessive amount of alcohol can have an effect on many parts of our bodies? Today we’re looking at the effect alcohol can have on your hair.

Can alcohol cause hair loss? The short answer is no, there is no direct link between hair loss and exceeding the recommended units of alcohol. There are however several side effects related to heavy drinking that can in turn have an impact on hair loss.

Dehydration

Alcohol is a diuretic, so excessive alcohol can cause accelerated dehydration. Alcohol consumption lowers the natural level of anti-diuretic hormone (ADH) in the body. ADH helps the body regulate hydration, as these levels lower the body starts to expel liquid though sweating and urinating. A lack of body fluid causes dry and brittle hair making it prone to breakage, although this does not necessarily cause hair loss.

Loss of minerals

Zinc and iron are two key minerals for healthy hair, so the depletion of these two minerals can occur as a result of excessive alcohol consumption.

Zinc is an important mineral for the overall health of the hair as well as working to help the body absorb key nutrients. Alcohol can prevent zinc from being absorbed properly, when it really needs to be absorbed daily.

Iron is, yet again, a key mineral for the health of your hair and an iron deficiency can lead to the baldness condition telogen effluvium. This triggers hair to prematurely enter the resting stage of the growth cycle. The hairs then lie dormant for 90 days until shedding. If the loss of minerals isn’t dealt with the hairs can continue in the resting stage and lead to severe hair loss. If, however, you get your normal intake of minerals the hair will return to its normal growth process on its own within around 6 months.

Will my hair loss be permanent

Hair thinning and hair loss from heavy alcohol consumption should be temporary. If you have noticed your hair is getting dry, brittle and thin due to excessive drinking, we recommend assessing your daily intake and altering it, sticking with the guidelines of the recommended units. Your hair should get back to its normal healthy state within a couple of months.

If you have noticed thinning, damaged hair, which has lead to hair loss, and you don’t drink your hair loss could be related to a different condition. Some hair loss conditions do not resume normal growth and need some form of treatment. At the Harley Street Hair Clinic we offer hair loss treatments including FUE hair transplants. If you need any more information on hair loss or our treatments please feel free to contact us.

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