Are you noticing more hair in your hairbrush? Is your shower clogging up with stray hair?
You are not alone.
Hair loss is natural. At any given time, about 90% of our hair is growing, about 5% is resting and 5% is shedding. But at times when you have a major stress event or shock, or extended periods of living at higher stress levels, up to 50% of hairs can be pushed into the shedding phase. This results in excess shedding and thinning hair.
While we’re still learning about the long-term effects of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), we’re also beginning to see many other consequences the virus causes even for those who don’t contract it. Stress is one of those. And after 5+months of living with lockdown, emotional stress and fears of the disease and the economic fall-out, we are all starting to feel and see the effects of the extended stress. Stress is a major trigger for hair loss.
Three types of hair loss that can be associated with high stress levels are:
- Telogen effluvium: here significant stress pushes large numbers of hair follicles into a resting phase. When we’re stressed, our adrenal glands produces a hormone called cortisol, and then the cortisone signals our hair follicles to shift out of growth phase into catagen, a transition phase, and then hair will fall out. Within a few months, affected hairs might fall out suddenly when simply combing or washing your hair.
- Trichotillomania is an irresistible urge to pull out hair from your scalp, eyebrows or other areas of your body. Hair pulling can be a way of dealing with negative or uncomfortable feelings, such as stress, tension, loneliness, boredom or frustration.
- Alopecia areata. A variety of factors are thought to cause alopecia areata, possibly including severe stress. With alopecia areata, the body’s immune system attacks the hair follicles, causing hair loss.
But you may ask… Why worry about hairloss when there is so much else to concern us? Well our hair is part of our identity and how people perceive us. When people start losing their hair, especially for the first time, it can be very emotionally distressing and upsetting to them. So it does need to be addressed.
The good news is, those hairs that were shed are replaced with new healthy hair. People might feel like their hair is thinner but, eventually, their hair density goes back to normal, assuming the hair loss isn’t from medication or an illness.
But what can you do to recover your healthy mane sooner?
Step one is obvious, curb your stress. Learn and practice relaxation techniques (such as deep breathing, meditation, or yoga) regularly. Find an outlet, whether it is reading or watching movies, whatever helps you cope.
But obviously, currently, totally getting rid of stress is easier said than done.
So what else can you do?
Exercise… It helps with stress and blood circulation.
Drink lots of Water
Water is a key ingredient that supports vitamins, which contribute to your hair growth. Believe it or not, but water makes up almost 25% of the weight of a single strand of hair. Drinking at least two liters of water a day will help the strength of your hair, increasing growth. By drinking the water that your body needs, your skin, scalp and body will function significantly better than it would without enough hydration.
Change your shampoo
One of the things that increase inflammation and oxidative stress in our hair follicles is coming from the outside world, and sometimes directly, from our shampoo and the chemicals they contain. When we’re using products that have chemicals in them it can disrupt our hormonal balance and have a negative effect on our hair. Try switching your shampoo to a natural, sulfate free product.
Like any other part of your body, hair needs a variety of nutrients to be healthy and grow.
Start of with a really good Multivitamin (TLC-Multivitamin) to supply all the essentials like Vitamin A, C, Zinc and Iron, then make sure you add addutional B Vitamins (TLC-Smart IQ). Add a Collagen Supplement (TLC-Collagen in capsule or powder form). Collagen is rich in amino acids that your body needs to build keratin, the protein that makes up hair, and aids hair growth and hair health on many levels.
A combination of the above measures can help your hair grow back longer and stronger in as little as a few weeks. The key to getting the best results? Be consistent with your supplement intake and commit to them daily for at least six months.
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