Sadly, stress is common in the UK.
Around 75 per cent of adults have felt overwhelmed and unable to cope with it, while 32 per cent have experienced stress-related suicidal feelings.
Stress has the power to make life incredibly difficult, whether you’re worried about money, family, work, a loved one, or any other problem.
But stress can also have an impact on your physical wellbeing by disrupting your immune system, increasing your risk of stroke, and more.
And one of the most well-known physical effects of stress is hair loss.
But how does this work?
Understanding the Different Types of Stress-related Hair Loss
Various types of stress-induced hair loss may be to blame for unusual or accelerated thinning/baldness.
This is the most common form of hair loss related to stress.
Anyone affected by this condition will stop producing new hair, and their existing hair will become dormant before falling out after two or three months.
Fortunately, in most cases of telogen effluvium, the hair will start to grow back between six and nine months later.
With alopecia areata, white blood cells attack the hair follicles.
White blood cells exist to defend the body against foreign substances and infectious diseases, but they can sometimes target aspects of the body they shouldn’t.
Alopecia areata can lead to fast hair loss, typically occurring in patches across the scalp.
It may cause full baldness and even extend beyond the head, prompting body hair to fall out.
Hair usually grows back over time, but extreme cases of alopecia areata can require treatment.
Extreme emotional stress or anxiety can lead to hair loss, particularly when sustained over long periods.
It may push hair follicles into the “resting” stage of the growth cycle and prevent them from creating new strands.
Hair may start to fall out when being shampooed, styled, or even touched.
Hair loss should end after the underlying cause of the emotional stress has been resolved.
While emotional stress is a well-known cause of hair loss, extreme physical stress may be to blame too.
This could be the result of drastic dietary changes, childbirth, illness, or even overly-vigorous hairstyling.
Hair loss resulting from physical stress may be reversed over time, but treatment could be necessary in some cases.
If you are experiencing hair loss related to any of these conditions (rather than as a natural part of the ageing process), it may be in your best interests to contact a doctor.
Emotional or physical stress can take a severe toll on your health, and should be addressed immediately.
Help is available if you need it.
A medical professional may recommend various treatments to help address your hair loss and restore your growth to its previous state.
Hair transplant surgery could be a viable solution if your hair loss is permanent and you have remaining strands to serve as “donors” for the procedure.
We’ve helped a wide range of men from around the world, using state-of-the-art hair restoration technology and techniques.
If you lose more than 50 – 100 hairs per day, you may have stress hair loss. Bald patches forming across your scalp could indicate alopecia areata, while feeling an urge to tear your hair out might suggest you have trichotillomania.
When caused by anxiety or stress, hair loss may be temporary only. Hair could grow back when your stress levels return to normal: try to bring them down to prevent hair loss and improve your overall health. If the cause is stress, hair loss should end and new growth may begin within a few months.
Increased stress levels are linked to three forms of hair loss. Telogen effluvium is the most well-known: this condition pushes more hair follicles than usual into the resting phase, so a number of hairs could fall out over following months.
When due to anxiety or stress, hair loss will often end and normal growth will eventually resume. However, shedding may continue and create patchy or extensive baldness. Telogen effluvium could occur.