For ages, men and women have flaunted their mane with pride and honour. More than anything else these have been an extension of their personality. Needless to say, this has led to quite some obsession over time.
In times when brains are just as important as brawn, one’s hair has definitely come into the spotlight. And there have been some issues with hair that have been recurring quite often. Though each person’s hair is different from the other in length, texture and colour, some of the problems seem to remain the same.
Our hair has an important structural as well as social function in a person’s life. It is composed of a tough protein called keratin, just like that of nails and hooves. The hair follicle anchors itself to the skin and gets all of its nourishment from the living cells beneath. The cells divide to build the hair shaft. There are blood vessels in the hair bulb which modify hair growth and structure during the different phases of one’s life.
There are a number of factors that come to play a role in the way our hair turns out. Besides just being a reflection of one’s health, hair remnants also give us a clue about the diet and lifestyle of those passed away. It is almost as if the hair is a record of all the activities undertaken by the individual. This includes exposure to tobacco and environmental toxins. The hair is a protective sheathing to the softer, delicate portions of the body, they are directly exposed to the environment. When an individual is exposed to tough environmental conditions, it is seen to clearly reflect in his/her hair growth. Besides that product accumulation is one of the hidden causes for most of the common hair problems.
Following are some of the common hair problems we face today:
1. Hair Loss:
This is one of the most widespread issues that people face with regard to hair. Thousands of people are worried sick only due to the amount of hair they lose, and worrying is only making matters worse. This is seen to be particularly a nightmare for women, but men are not too far behind. With male pattern balding on the rise men are just as worried.
There are a number of factors that lead to hair loss including stress, hormonal fluctuations, and menopause. Prescription medicines for depression, birth control and high blood pressure are known to have hair fall as side effects.
Spot Baldness or alopecia areata is another form of hair loss. This is usually seen in individuals suffering from autoimmune disorders. During the onset of this condition, all hair is lost from a small surface area. This often results in bald spots on the scalp or on the body, approximately the size of a coin. The hair loss during these conditions more often than not is permanent. Under these conditions, the body fails to recognize its own cells and the immune system destroys the developing hair follicle.
Surgeries could also lead to hair loss. Particularly those associated with infections, over or underactive thyroid and fungal infections.
With the present day, even hair care and styling products are known to play a role in hair loss. Hair care practices such as bleaching, wearing tight ponytails, and perming the hair too damages the hair to a great extent.
2. Graying Hair:
Now we all know that it is common for hair to lose its pigmentation with time. A study showed that across the world almost 74% of people aged between 45 and 64 suffer from graying. Both the rate and onset of graying seemed to vary with geographical and ethnic origin. Those with African and Asian descent seemed to show less graying than those of Caucasian origin.
However, graying is a problem even for much younger individuals. Premature graying as it is known is believed to be the result of a deficiency of Vitamin D3. Malnutrition, electric dryers, hormonal imbalances and chemicals present in hair lead to graying.
Some studies show that certain minerals such as copper, vitamin B, iodine and iron play a role in premature graying. Some people also have a genetic predisposition to early graying.
3. Lack of Volume:
Lack of volume is an issue that is coming up with both men and women. There could be various contributing factors to this problem. Thyroid imbalances, hormone-related conditions, low iron levels and nutrition also lead to a lack of volume in the growing hair. Wrong shampoos and inappropriate conditioner at times accumulate and make the hair too heavy resulting in lack of volume. To reverse, use products that reduce the stress on the hair.
In addition, you might want to add some probiotic supplements to your routine. As explained in an in-depth analysis by Hair Loss Revolution, good microflora goes a long way in supporting hair follicles during their longest phase of their life cycle, the anagen phase.
The anagen phase is a formative one for hair follicles as it determines the total length your strand will end up being. As Hair Loss Revolution found while researching scientific journals, probiotics support the growth of more hair follicles during the angen phase. Therefore, the more hair follicles propped up during the formative stages of hair growth means more strong hair strands to sprout up on your scalp.
4. Dry, Brittle Hair:
This is often thought of as a hair type and hence unchangeable. But that is not true. While some hair types are inclined to be more dry and brittle than others, this is a condition seems to affect all hair-types equally. This problem is faced by both men and women alike.
One of the main causes for dry brittle hair is deficient moisture and oil on the scalp. Excessive exposure to wind, sun, dry air makes the condition worse. Using various appliances on the hair is prone to make the hair more dry and brittle than usual.
This could turn out to be serious if not tended to at the initial stages. At later stages it leads to frizzy hair, split ends, thinning, hair loss, and early breakage.
In order to avoid this condition, it is important to keep scalp moisturized and oiled at all times. Essential oils help make the hair shiny and soft. And it is best not to comb the hair when it is wet to avoid breakage and split ends.
5. Split Ends:
This normally seen when there is damage to the outermost protective layer of the hair, making follicle tip to peel back. It is more often in women than men. Heavy usage of chemicals, including colouring, and excessive styling are known to cause split ends.
Using a gentle, mild conditioner helps a great deal. Keeping away from harmful chemical products stops the conditions from getting worse. Trimming the hair every 8 – 12 weeks is one other way to keep split ends in check.
6. Flaky Scalp:
A flaky scalp is often mistaken to be dandruff. Unlike dandruff flaky scalp inhibits hair growth altogether. This is one of the conditions that if allowed to progress to a greater degree, leads to hair loss. There are various factors that lead to flaky scalp.
Lack of moisture, cold weather, product build-up, strong detergents or soaps are some factors that promote flaky scalp. Inflammatory conditions such as eczema and psoriasis may just be gut-related.
As explained by Hair Loss Revolution, “Hair follicles are affected by inflammation just as any other organ in the body.” In their in-depth analysis, Hair Loss Revolution came across a scientific journal that concluded long-term inflammations on the scalp may slow down the hair growth process. In some cases, hair loss may happen as well.
If you see the signs of a flaky scalp, eliminate styling products that contain harsh chemicals. Avoiding these sorts of irritants is a step that would alleviate flakiness. Increasing intake of vitamins and minerals in daily diet helps reduce its incidence. Hydrating and massaging the scalp with oil, yogurt and other herbal ingredients helps prevent flaky scalp.
7. Dull Hair:
The only issue with having dull hair is that it makes you look older than your age. Dull Hair is the result of chemical damage, heat styling, stress and other environmental factors that make the cuticle go rough. Many people try to artificially make the hair shiny. But this only makes it attract more dust and dirt, making it worse than before.
The best way to get rid of dull hair is to use the right kind of conditioner. And make sure that there is no buildup of chemicals on the hair.
8. Frizzy Hair:
This is a common problem particularly for those who prefer shiny, bouncy and silky hair. One of the main causes of frizzy hair is dehydration. When the moisture level is lower than normal, the hair gets frizzy.
Water accounts for about 15% of the hair composition. When natural oils and sebum are present in the right amount the hair will go back to being smooth and shiny again.
One of the ways to avoid frizzy hair is to avoid brushing dry hair. Avoiding over processing the hair in any manner also helps the cause.
Ensuring that the scalp is well-moisturized helps in this regard. It is best to use natural conditioners that are wheat protein based or soy based. These are known to help with hydration as compared to others.
Dandruff is one of the most embarrassing issues from the whole lot of hair issues. Just a few dots clinging to the hair can destroy one’s appearance and confidence. It is often the result of infection, poor diet, yeast, and/or a sluggish metabolism.
Anti-Dandruff shampoos work in the short. But improving your health overall and ensuring that your scalp is healthy is the key to solving this issue long term.
One of the ways to deal with dandruff is to wash the hair with a gentle shampoo in order to control the sebum production.
Remember, hair is just a reflection of your overall health. And its definitely not easy to have naturally great hair with all its shine all day long. With all the chemicals in the modern day, it has become that much harder to keep your hair prim and proper. The best way is to go natural and avoid any strong chemicals on the hair. Besides, that just watch out for these common problems so you can surely avoid anything become too difficult to handle.
Disclaimer: The above article is sponsored by Thyrve, the world’s first Gut Health Program that incorporates microbiome testing and personalized probiotics to ensure a healthier gut, happier life, and a brighter future.