What Causes Hair Loss?

microscopic follicular graftingHair grows from follicles in the dermis of the skin. Scalp hair grows as natural “bundles” containing between one and four hairs each. At the base of each follicle is the papilla, which is surrounded by nerves and blood vessels that maintain hair growth. Surrounding the papilla is the bulb, with actively growing cells that make new hair.

Hair is made of a fibrous protein, keratin– the same protein that is found in the skin and the nails. Hair can look healthy, strong and shiny or dull and dead. Dieting on a very low protein diet may result in fragile hair that is lifeless. Problems with the thyroid gland, aging, and over-treatment by chemicals and heat also lead to that dull hair appearance. There is no hair product that can feed or nourish your hair.

Humans grow two types of hair: vellus and terminal. Vellus hair is short, fine, and not pigmented. It can be found over much of the body. Terminal hair is found on the scalp and in areas of secondary sexual development.

Normal growth for the hair on our scalps is approximately one centimeter (a little less than half an inch) per month. Hormones generally regulate hair growth. Hair loss (alopecia) and excessive hair growth (hirsutism) can be caused by hormonal problems.

The most common cause of premature hair loss is pattern baldness, a trait frequently seen in men due to the influence of the hormone testosterone. The hair on the back and sides of the head remains, while causing balding on the front and top. This baldness is hereditary, progressive, and permanent. Typically, the earlier baldness starts in a person’s life, the more extensive it will be. At least half of all men will have some degree of baldness. Pattern baldness also affects women.

The Griffin Center provides state-of-the art hair restoration with the most advanced procedure available today: Neograft hair restoration surgery.

The Griffin Center also offers three solutions to the problem of unwanted hair: electrolysis, GentleLASE®, and EpiLight®.

What is normal hair loss?

Losing hair is a natural process for all of us. Each of us with a full head of hair has approximately 100,000 hairs on our scalp. Hair color often determines this exact number—typically light-colored hair is the thickest, dark hair is next thickest, and red hair is least dense. At any given time only about 90 percent of these hairs will be in the growing (anagen) phase, while the other ten percent will be in the resting (telogen) phase. On average, we lose approximately

Hair loss has many possible causes. Sudden temporary baldness can be caused by the flu, pneumonia, high fevers, or even severe stress. Systemic disorders of the pituitary gland, low thyroid activity, diabetes, nutritional deficiencies, tuberculosis, and cancer can cause gradual thinning of the hair. Scarring disorders, accidents, burns, and cosmetic surgery can also cause hair loss.

Wearing a hairstyle such as tight braiding on the scalp, cornrows, or a ponytail can result in a condition called traction alopecia, which ultimately can cause scarring of the scalp that leads to permanent hair loss. If the use of these hairstyles is ceased before scarring occurs, hair growth should not be affected. Hot oil treatments and hair care chemicals can cause swelling of hair follicles, which can also result in scarring and hair loss.

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"Dr. Griffin specializes in several areas, but he is best known for his ability to treat patients with hair loss. I have been seeing him for nearly 3 years and have seen tremendous results…" Read More