Hair loss, which is the problem of one in every three people, is divided into different types according to their characteristics. Hair loss types are classified according to the reasons for the shedding, whether it is permanent or not, how it starts and how it progresses.
You can get information about treatment methods after you learn your hair loss type and according to your hair loss type, you can search for the solutions in a more convenient way. There are mainly 2 types of hair loss classified as permanent and temporary hair losses.
Permanent Hair Loss Types
The common feature of permanent hair loss is that the hair follicles, which have weakened after structural deformations, do not grow again. Nowadays, for permanent hair loss, there are various techniques to slow down the speed of shedding as well as hair tightening and hair growth methods which are used to make hair look natural. There are 3 types of permanent hair loss.
- Male Pattern Hair Loss
- Female Pattern Hair Loss
- Permanent Regional Hair Loss
1- Male Pattern Hair Loss (Androgenetic Aleopecia)
Male pattern hair loss is the most common type of hair loss. It is caused by excessive secretion of androgen hormone. Androgen hormone, known as the male hormone, causes narrowing of the capillaries which deliver blood to the hair follicles. In this way, the hair follicles cannot be fed and get shrunk in time to take the form of feathers.
The main characteristics of male pattern hair loss (Androgenetic Alopecia) among the permanent types of hair loss are as follows;
- It begins with shedding in the forehead. It continues with spills on the top of the head.
- It is the most common types of hair loss.
- Although male pattern hair loss is seen mostly in men, women can experience it in some cases as well.
- It is caused by genetic reasons.
- It is definitely permanent.
- It can start in the 20s and be completed quickly or it can start at a later age and have a slower course.
- The most prominent feature of male pattern hair loss is the similarity of the pattern and the course of hair loss. In male-type hair loss, although there is intense hair in a specific area (eg in the nape area), complete balding can be seen in another region (eg peak area or forehead).
2- Female Pattern Hair Loss
Although it can be seen both in men and women, it is often seen in women and caused by genetic reasons. In female pattern hair loss which is among the types of permanent hair loss, some of the hair follicles stay in the sleep phase where they do not grow or develop. During the sleeping phase which is one of the hair growth cycles based on the hair structure and characteristics of the hair, hair follicles rest and stay at the same length. In this way, the hair becomes increasingly thin. The main problem here is that the shed hair strands are not replaced by the healthy new hair strands.
General characteristics of female pattern hair loss are as follows;
- The hair follicles begin to decrease evenly in each area of the head. Hair strands are generally quite thin and there is a sparse appearance. This situation increases over time and spread to each region of the head so that the scalp can easily be seen.
- It can be seen in both women and men.
- It begins at an early age and shows heavy progress.
- Since the number of follicles entering into the sleeping phase is increased with age, the female pattern hair loss also intensifies.
- In some cases, hair follicles can be reduced to 20-30/cm2.
- It is caused by genetic reasons.
- It is permanent.
3- Permanent Regional Hair Loss
The main reason for permanent regional spillage is that the scars, burns, etc. have permanently damaged the hair follicles in certain parts of the scalp. In such cases, the hair does not grow in the damaged area and regional hair loss occurs.
Regional hair losses, which are among the temporary hair loss types in some cases, are also experienced due to alopecia disease known as ringworm among the population. Alopecia disease causes the hair to fall out of certain areas in the form of a coin. This type of hair loss caused by ringworm disease is eliminated when the disease is cured and but it can remain for a lifetime if the disease is not treated.
- Regional hair loss can be seen in both men and women.
- It is permanent as well.
Temporary Hair Loss Types
Temporary hair loss is a type of hair loss which emerges due to various reasons and enters a period of self-healing after those reasons are treated or fixed. Both men and women may experience it. It may occur for many different reasons. Types of temporary hair loss are as follows:
- Hormonal Hair Loss
- Disease And Treatment-Induced Hair Loss
- Hair Loss Due To Nutritional Disorders
- Stress-Induced Hair Loss
1- Hormonal Hair Loss
Hormonal imbalances can cause hair loss. Hormone disorders are among the problems that some people experience during certain periods and these hormonal imbalances in the body are one of the causes of temporary hair losses. Hormonal imbalances can be caused by various diseases or at some special times such as pregnancy and menopause periods.
Hormonal hair losses can be healed over time, and they can also be cured with a specific treatment process after undergoing a hormone test under the supervision of a physician.
2- Disease And Treatment-Induced Hair Loss
Various diseases can cause hair loss. With the elimination of the disease, hair loss can also be eliminated in a short time. Disease induced hair losses, such as hairworm, can be directly related to the structure of the hair. Besides, many diseases which tire the body’s system for a long time may cause hair loss. Hair loss can be a harbinger of different diseases. You should consult your doctor if you are experiencing intense hair loss for a long time.
Some types of hair loss are caused by medications and similar treatments taken during the treatment of diseases. For example, cancer patients have hair loss due to chemotherapy during the treatment period.
3- Hair Loss Due To Nutritional Disorders
Nutritional disorders are one of the common causes of hair loss, especially in women. Hair follicles are connected to the vascular system of our body with capillaries. Our bodies carry nutrients to the hair follicles through this capillaries so that our hair will be fed. All other organs and structures of the body are also faced with problems when the individual’s diet is unbalanced and/or he/she is undernourished.
As our hair structure is sensitive, it is one of the most rapidly affected areas due to an inadequacy in nutrition. For your hair to be strong and healthy, you can choose a balanced diet as well as foods that are useful for your hair structure.
4- Stress-Induced Hair Loss
Stress-induced hair loss is very common in people with intense daily stress, especially in large metropolitan areas. Stress is known to rapidly disrupt the structure of our body. The stress we experience in our daily lives may cause certain diseases as well as hair loss.
Stress-induced hair loss among temporary hair loss varieties may occur at certain periods when the stress increases or it may occur suddenly due to certain reasons such as the loss of a loved one or in the event of great destruction or pain. When the stress source is eliminated, the rate of hair loss slows down and the hair structure returns to its normal state over time.
All in all, there are permanent and temporary ones among the types of hair loss. To find out the reason for your hair loss and help to minimize the damages, quickly seek a doctor to start treatment as soon as possible.
Other Hair Loss Types
Hair Loss in Children
The cause of hair loss in children is usually the ringworm disease. After treatment, the hair will regain its old structure and quality. Those who are late for treatment may permanently lose their hair.
Hair Loss Due to Drug Use
Taking excessive medication or vitamins harm our body as well as cause damage to the scalp and the hair follicles, even further results in hair loss. Some cholesterol-lowering drugs, blood pressure medications, thyroid hormone-related drugs, some drugs used in psychiatry, birth control drugs, vitamin A and some similar drugs may cause hair loss. Hair loss after birth can also be included in this group.
Excessive hair loss for more than 2 months must be followed closely. Hair loss itself can also increase the level of stress and cause a vicious circle. In particular, hair loss lasting longer than 3 months is risky and an expert doctor should be consulted considering the various underlying diseases.
Hair Loss Due to Vitamin Deficiency
After birth, especially after the first to the fourth month, hair loss and skin disorders may occur due to hormonal changes. They usually last less than 7 months. Female patients should make sure their level of sex hormones is checked, especially if they experience hair dilution, acne, menstrual irregularity, increase in hairing.
Iron deficiency is detected in 70% of women complaining of hair loss covering all scalp. Therefore, especially during pregnancy, women should take an iron supplement prescribed by a doctor.
Hair Loss Due to Thyroid Hormones
In the case of hypothyroidism, hair loss may be experienced. Generally, the thyroid glands are observed to be slower than they should be or completely stopped. After 5 to 7 weeks of thyroid hormone treatment, the hair begins to return to normal. Prolonged hypothyroidism develops permanent hair loss. On the other hand, hyperthyroidism can also cause hair loss.
Male Pattern Hair Loss in Women
Male pattern hair loss, called “Androgenetic Alopecia” in the medical language, is a hair loss type caused by hormonal factors which are generally based on genetic predisposition and can be seen in women as well. As in men, 80 percent of the baldness and permanent hair loss seen in women is due to male pattern hair loss.
The effect of the androgen hormone secreted in women may cause narrowing of the hair follicles. Hair follicles that are not fed well become smaller and shrink and male pattern hair loss may be initiated. Male pattern hair loss characteristics are as follows:
- Starts from the top of the head,
- Continue with the dilution on the forehead area,
- Nape regions are the last and least shed parts,
- Although its progression can be slowed down, it is permanent,
- Occurs due to familial predisposition. For male type hair loss seen in women, it is not necessary that a woman in the family had experienced it before.
Why Is the Male Pattern Hair Loss Seen in Women?
The main cause of male pattern hair loss which is seen in women is the androgen hormone that is secreted more than normal. There are several hormonal imbalances that occur in women for a variety of reasons, but it means there is familial predisposition if these conditions are due to the structure of DNA. This causes a permanent effect. In order to understand male pattern hair loss in women, it is necessary to understand male pattern hair loss firstly.
There are two main reasons for male pattern hair loss in women.
1- Secretion of Androgen Hormones More Than Normal
It is the main reason for male pattern hair loss.
Male-type hair loss, androgen hormones D Testosterone and Dihydrotestosterone (DHT) and negatively affect and weaken hair follicles.
Androgen hormones are secreted in both women and men. However, women are less likely to release male hormones like testosterone than men.
In cases where the hormone testosterone is excessively secreted in women when the balance of sexual desire is excreted in a balanced and sufficient amount, the hair follicles are affected by this condition and begin to spill from the peak.
2- Hair Follicles Which Are Not Resistant to the Androgen Hormone
The hair follicles are prepared and resistant to a certain amount of androgen hormone, but due to their genetic properties, the hair follicles that are not susceptible to these hormones shrink and turn into hairs that do not grow. In addition to hormonal problems, this effect can be caused by the fact that hair follicles are not resistant to these hormones.
Although the early diagnosis of male pattern hair loss in women can be done with hormone testing, the most common symptom is hair loss. The fact that the hair is intensely shed and the region becomes apparent (starting from the peak point) is the precursor of male pattern hair loss. The Norwood scale for women can also help in the early diagnosis of hair loss.
Male pattern hair loss in women can manifest itself starting from a young age. There is no definitive treatment method for male pattern hair loss in women, but an early diagnosis can delay the shedding with various medications and serums.
Male pattern hair losses, although varying from person to person, results in mid-level balding after a mean period of 5 to 10 years. After this point, the best and lasting solution is hair transplantation.
Hormone Balance in Women Is Very Important
A woman who has male pattern hair loss (certainly verified after a hair analysis and hormone tests) can be given a variety of drugs by her doctor in the early period to slow down the hair loss. In such cases, the doctor may start hormone therapy if necessary.
Important Information for Women Suspected of Male Pattern Hair Loss
- To be able to understand the type of hair loss, have a hormone test.
- Find out if your hair loss is temporary or permanent type.
- Keep in mind that the factors causing hair loss will accelerate the male pattern hair loss.
- For early diagnosis of hair loss, apply regular treatment methods such as certain medications and shampoos. Know that these applications delay balding especially in early periods.
- The most precise method to cure permanent hair loss is hair transplantation. Get information from hair transplantation centers for more information about the procedure.
- Keep in mind that your hair loss level must have reached a certain point in order for hair transplantation.
- Hair transplantation for women is not different from the hair transplantation for men. The same procedure is followed for both.
- Note that stress accelerates hair loss.
Hair Loss Types in Literature: A Medical Approach
Hair loss (ringworm) stands out as one of the biggest problems of our age. Hair loss is often associated with men, but nowadays it is a problem that affects women and even young people. Although the causes of hair loss and the treatment methods to be selected differ from individual to individual, there are also types of hair loss that can be easily diagnosed in humans in terms of their symptoms and course.
Under this topic, I will give information about all of the hair loss types in literature, which are:
- Androgenetic Alopecia
- Alopecia Areata
- Alopecia Totalis
- Traction Alopecia
- Skatricial Alopecia
- Telogen Effluvium
- Involutional Alopecia
- Alopecia Barbae
- Anagen Effluvium
- Alopecia International
We can say that the general name of these diseases among the people is expressed as the ringworm.
- Androgenetic Alopecia
Androgenetic Alopecia, also known as male pattern hair loss, is the most common type of hair loss in both men and women. This hair loss type, which is known to be triggered by androgens (the male hormones), can occur at any age (usually after adolescence) and known to have a genetic predisposition, manifests itself as 3 stages, namely: the regression of the hairline, hair loss at the top of the head and complete balding at the top of the head. This hair loss type can also be experienced down the hill.
5 alpha-reductase converts testosterone to Dihydrotestosterone which causes hypersensitivity on hair follicles. Over time, the hair follicles cannot be fed and weakened and get thinner, in other words, hair shortens in diameter and length (hair miniaturization) and then the loss of hair begins. When the advanced stages are reached, hair follicles may disappear completely. It is difficult to prevent and treat, therefore the effective solution is to have hair transplantation.
- Alopecia Areata
It is known that this type of hair loss, which is the most common in the world and seen equally in men and women, is the result of the immune system seeing its own cells as foreign substances and attacking the hair follicles. The expression of ringworm describes this disease as a literature response. Although the causes cannot be determined precisely, it is estimated that genetic factors, as well as psychological and physical stress, play a role in this type of hair loss, which is thought to be an autoimmune reaction.
The hair loss, which appears suddenly and as patches in certain areas, may not only be limited to the scalp but may also affect the beard area, eyebrows or any part of the body that contains the hair. Eyebrow cultivation in women, beard cultivation in men is the solution for such cases. There is no definitive treatment for Alopecia Areata, which is likely to be recurrent, but in exceptional circumstances, shedding is usually temporary and after a while, the person’s hair will start to grow again.
- Alopecia Totalis
Alopecia Totalis is the advanced phase of the immune system seeing the cells as foreign substances and attacking the hair follicles. The causes of Alopecia Totalis, which result in the loss of all or a very large part of the hair, are generally thought to be caused by stress, although it is not known exactly.
It is one of the most feared hair loss types since it may lead to Alopecia Universalis, which is a condition of loss of all scalp and body hairs. There is no permanent treatment, but the use of immunomodulators is generally recommended. These include the plants and vegetables containing Vitamin A, B2, B6, C and Selenium such as garlic, onions, tomatoes, carrots, and broccoli.
- Traction Alopecia
The main reason for this type of hair loss, which is very common especially in African and American women, is the tightly attached ponytail models and fine braids. Traction Alopecia, also known as a traumatic hair loss due to prolonged tightening and stretching of hair follicles, progresses from the hairline to the temporal regions and causes oval-shaped hairless areas over the head.
This type of hair loss is a treatable condition, but the hair should not be tied so tightly, otherwise, it may not be possible to recover damaged hair follicles in later stages.
- Cicatricial Alopecia
Hair loss experienced in this type of shedding, which can be seen in all age groups in both men and women, occurs because of the serious damage of hair follicles due to skin injuries. 3% of the people experiencing hair loss is exposed to this type.
Cicatricial Alopecia is divided into two groups as primary cicatricial and secondary cicatricial alopecia.
-Primary Cicatricial Alopecia
It is a condition in which the hair follicles are damaged due to inflammation and permanently shed as a result. The reasons are not fully known.
-Secondary Cicatricial Alopecia
Hair follicles are lost due to secondary causes such as trauma, accident, and infection. As with other types of spillage, it is not limited to the hair follicles dying and shedding, there may also be rashes, dandruff or acne in the affected scalp area. It is a permanent type of hair loss, its prevention and treatment are very difficult, therefore, the most effective solution is to have hair transplantation.
- Telogen Effluvium
This hair loss is one of the most common types seen in women. This disease is usually experienced in women who are in postpartum or menopause periods. Other possible causes include malnutrition, psychological and physical stress, hormonal changes, inflammatory diseases, and medications.
- Involutional Alopecia
It is a natural condition where hair gets thinner gradually and fall eventually. Both women and men may experience it depending on their age. As age progresses, the number and density of hair follicles decrease. The growth rate of the hair follicles slows down, the capillaries will be unable to feed the hair sufficiently and causes it to shed in a short time.
This is a natural phase of the life cycle, which is usually inevitable and experienced in old age. However, it is possible to delay hair loss for a while if regular care is given to the hair starting from the early stages.
- Alopecia Barbae
Alopecia Barbae is a type of hair loss which is seen in men as a dilution in the beard area. Alopecia Barbae, which may develop suddenly or progresses slowly, can be caused by genetic or autoimmune diseases. In some cases, factors such as stress or depression are thought to trigger and accelerate this hair loss type by affecting the immune system.
- Anagen Effluvium
It is a hair loss type caused by the drugs and methods used in various treatments of hair. The most important feature of this shedding, which can be seen in everyone and at any age, is that the hair is shed without thinning.
- Alopecia Universalis
In Alopecia Universalis which is defined as an advanced phase of the Alopecia Areata, the hair loss is not limited to the hair, eyebrows, and eyelashes, but the body hair is completely shed. If we look at the causes of this type of hair loss, which is known to be seen in 0.001% of the people at all ages, it may be described as an autoimmune reaction, as in most Alopecia diseases, where the body attack person’s own cells and as a result damage the hair follicles.
The Role of Stress in Hair Loss
The role of stress in hair loss is now known. Stress, which negatively affects the mental health of a person, can affect not only the person but also the environment of the person in the same way. Personal problems, financial difficulties, intense work tempo, traffic or even a simple gossip can stress the person immediately.
Research has shown that stress can cause many diseases or accelerate the course of disease progression. In addition to many psychological disorders such as depression, schizophrenia, and panic attacks; the role of stress in hair loss is also essential.
The Effects of Stress on Hair and Skin
The most well-known example of stress on hair follicles is seen in movies. Because of sorrow, we saw a lot of actors whose hair get whitened over a single night. But this is not scientifically correct. In fact, the person loses the colored hair follicles due to stress. That is, because of stress, the hair does not turn white overnight. Stress, which causes the hair follicles to become weak and a process of rapid shedding, can lead to situations that will not be easy to recover when it lasts for a long time. However, the role of stress in hair loss has been investigated many times and different treatment methods have been developed. The role of stress in hair loss does not discriminate sex. I mean, it can be seen in both men and women.
You can witness some people struggling with baldness or hair loss, although they do not have a specific disease or a genetic predisposition. If there is no nutritional problem, it is necessary to look at whether these people are under intense stress because the stress causes the hair follicles to lose their strength and quickly shed.
You need to be very careful about chronic stress. We experience stress due to various reasons during the day. If we turn this into a character or a frame of mind, it may damage our body. The role of stress in hair loss can be seen as intensive shedding. For our own health and external appearance, we must stay away from stressful environments and maintain a calm and peaceful mood. Intensive work tempo is another factor that can stress people and cause hair loss.
Chronic Stress Accelerates Hair Loss
If the person experiencing hair loss does not have a hormonal, genetic or disease-related cause as determined by the doctor, he/she should abandon the things that cause stress. Learning to change your mood quickly and positively will provide a positive contribution to you in terms of health and aesthetics.
Ways of Protection from Stress
Protection from stress, which has many negative effects, may not be so easy. In every area of life, it is necessary to take big and radical movements, such as changing our way of life and our perspective, as well as simple measures that can be taken for long-term protection from the causes for stress and tension. However, minor changes and measures that appear simple will reduce the role of stress in hair loss.