Are You at Risk for Hair Loss?

La Jolla plastic surgeon discusses hair loss and who may be at risk.

Hair loss can occur at any age and affects both men and women, so it’s worthwhile to know the risk factors involved and what solutions are available if your hair starts to thin. At my La Jolla hair transplant surgery clinic, patients’ hair loss is usually hereditary, but other factors are sometimes involved.

The causes of hair loss in men and women differ. For example, hormonal changes in a woman during and after a pregnancy can cause excessive hair loss. Research also suggests that severe stress is more likely to cause hair loss in women than men.

But both sexes have some risk factors in common besides a genetic history. Hair treatments such as coloring products or styling methods that pull your hair too tight can result in hair loss. Additionally, poor nutrition habits can contribute to thinning hair. Not getting enough iron and protein in your diet contributes to hair loss, which is associated with eating disorders and crash diets.

Thyroid conditions also play a role in excessive hair loss. The thyroid regulates hormone levels, and a thyroid disorder that causes certain hormones to fluctuate can result in hair loss.

Fortunately, hair loss solutions are more effective now than ever before. Medications such as minoxidil (Rogaine®) and finasteride (Propecia®) are approved by the FDA to treat hair loss. Hair restoration surgery options include various techniques that transplant hair follicles from the back of the head to the balding areas in precise procedures. The best way to determine the most effective treatment is to schedule a consultation with an experienced hair transplant surgeon.

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Doctors' posts and comments are not meant to constitute a doctor-patient relationship. Any type of surgical procedure carries risks, so readers should always consult with their own physician to help them understand their risks, choose a surgeon, and prepare themselves for the results of their procedure.