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Hair Loss Solutions for Various Kinds of Alopecia

Aug 17, 2007
Excessive hairloss may be caused by several factors and the choice of hair loss solutions should be targeted to these causes. Hair loss or alopecia caused by illness is temporary and usually requires no treatment. Hormonal imbalances can also lead to alopecia and the treatment of these imbalances also corrects the hair problem. An overactive or underactive thyroid gland, androgen and estrogen imbalances or pregnancy are examples of hormonal abnormalities that may lead to baldness. Certain medications, underlying diseases or infections, and improper hair care can also lead to alopecia.

The main kinds of hairloss are androgenetic alopecia, alopecia areata, telogen effluvium and traumatic alopecia. The hair loss solutions for each kind may overlap or may be entirely different depending on the stage of the disease. Of the four, androgenetic alopecia is the most common. Baldness of this type occurs above the forehead. The only effective treatment is minoxidil solution which can be applied to the scalp twice daily for several months. The most popular brand of minoxidil is Rogaine and most people using this treatment are able to get good results.

Alopecia Areata can present with one or two small bare spots. Sometimes, sufferers of this type of problem can lose all the hair in their head. This disease sometimes gets better on its own and might not require treatment. But for those who do, the treatment for this form of baldness is a steroid injection. Depending on the progression of the disease, patients may be given minoxidil, a steroid or anthralin cream or a steroid pill. For worse cases, patients would be referred to a dermatologist for a more directed treatment.

Telogen Effluvium is the sudden loss of hair which is usually not permanent. This kind of alopecia is caused by either emotional or physical stress. In this condition, a large amount of hair follicles become inactive for about a month or two before becoming active again allowing for new hair to grow. With this kind of alopecia, the cause should be identified. If medication caused the loss of hair, the medicine should be switched. If it is caused by stress, then the hair should begin to grow back a few months after the stressful event has passed and treatment then will be no longer necessary.

Some studies have shown that cosmetic practices, such as tying the hair too tightly, can cause traumatic alopecia. Other cosmetic practices include the use of brush rollers, curling irons and repetitive use of chemicals. All of these can damage hair follicles which can lead to hair thinning or loss. Obviously, the treatment is proper hair care. One other cause of traumatic alopecia is the condition called trichotillomania or the compulsive plucking of one's hair. Solutions for this condition may involve antidepressants or the combination of pharmacologic and behavioral therapies.

Hair loss solutions vary in forms and in the process of administration. Whatever type of alopecia a person is suffering from, it is encouraging to know that solutions are available and that there is no need for despair. A visit to a doctor is what's needed to understand how these different treatments and administration procedures work.
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