Worried about excessive hair loss?

Our hair follicles go through a growth cycle, which has three phases - anagen (growing), catagen (transition), and telogen (resting) phase. On an average, 90% of our scalp hair are in the anagen phase all the time, and the rest of the hairs are in catagen and telogen phase. Because of this, one can lose up to 100 hair strands per day. But when the percentage of hair in the telogen phase increase, you may have hair loss more than the normal. This is known as Telogen Effluvium.It is usually noticed as more than normal hairs on your pillow or hairbrush.

There are many conditions which can precipitate telegenic effluvium. Some of the most common and important ones are -

  1. Severe illness or high grade fever
  2. Use non-irritating lip balm, lipstick, and other products that you apply to your lips. If you feel any tingling, stinging or burning sensation after applying any lip products, that indicates that you are irritating your lips, and that product should be discontinued immediately.
  3. Hospitalization
  4. Surgery
  5. Accident
  6. Post delivery
  7. Excessive stress
  8. Losing body weight more than 10 kg over short period of time
  9. Discontinuation of birth control pills

Hair loss usually starts a 2-3 months after the stressful event. Person who has had any such history, starts to experience sudden severe hair loss which can be very panicking. People experiencing telegenic effluvium usually report that they are losing the entire length of hair from the roots. But the good news is that this hair shedding is normal and temporary. As the body recovers from the stressor, the excessive shedding stops. Most of the times, this takes six and nine months, and then the hair tends to regain its normal fullness.

However, if the stressor stays with you, hair shedding can persist, like if you have constant stress or continue to lose body weight rapidly.

Telogen effluvium is a clinical diagnosis. As it is a temporary and self- limiting condition, it does not require active intervention. Counselling plays a crucial role in the management.

If the hair loss persists beyond six months, it is termed as chronic telogen effluvium.This is the time when you would require to undergo investigation to find out the persistent stressor, and take active treatment. The treatment for chronic telogen effluvium includes topical lotion which facilitates the conversion of telogen hair to anagen hair, and increases the duration of anagen phase. This restores the normal hair cycle balance and thus improves excessive hair shedding. Besides, nutritional supplements  may be added if they are deficient. Treatments like PRP Treatment  or Mesotherapy with hair growth factors, also help to boost the hair growth.

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