Articles on hair follicle

6 Tips for Better Care of Your Hair

Dr. Vinod Sonawane, Hair Transplant Surgeon
There are several hair product  advertisements, for different types of hair and different types of hair problems, but we miss on the very simple and basic things that can give us lustrous hair. Following are some simple lifestyle changes you can make to improve your hair health drastically-  Wash your hair at least 3 times a week.  Most people use styling product or gel, so it is necessary to clean the buildup. Regular washing keeps the hair follicles clean so new hair growth has a clear path to your scalp’s surface. Most people use way too much shampoo to wash hair, only a small amount, the size of a coin is the right amount of shampoo that is required to wash the hair properly and clean the scalp. Dry the hair naturally. Any soft cotton cloth should be used for drying the hair, heavy towels should not be used for tying the hair. Trim the hair regularly every 6 to 8 weeks,this will help in getting rid of split ends.Drink at least 8 to 10 glasses of water everyday . Your diet should be rich in protein, iron, zinc.Massage the scalp, with your finger tips for 5 minutes, 2-3 times a day.  This increases the blood flow in the scalp region and aids hair growth. In India, the tradition of massaging oil in the scalp before bathing is followed, this improves blood flow and helps in conditioning the hairs. Even when you are not washing or applying oil to hair, still you should massage scalp everyday for 5 minutes.Blow drying and styling hair should be limited for special occasions.A few changes in routine life and habits can make a huge difference to the health of your hair. If you try these changes, you will witness them yourself!

Know More About Your Hair

Dr. Sameer Kumar Singh, Homeopath
GROWTH OF HAIR AND FACTORS THAT INFLUENCE HAIR GROWTHWhen a new baby is born, he or she has soft, fine and downy hair called lanugo that disappears shortly after the birth. Normally hair on the scalp and other parts of body becomes thicker and coarser. In middle age, hair growth can be seen on the ears of men and women develop the same on face at the time of menopause. This is due to change in endocrine pattern.Stages of hair growth-ANAGEN HAIR (Period of Active Growth)The stage when the growing is in process, the hair is called ‘Anagen’ hair. Anagen hair keeps on growing from two to five years. In Anagen hair, the cells of follicle grow, divide and are keratinized in order to make hair grow. Having keratin means that the base of the hair shaft is moist and soft and the rest of hair shaft above hair bulb is dark pigmented.CATAGEN HAIR (Period of Transition or Breakdown and Change)When the hair is under transition stage, which is from root to end, the hair is called ‘catagen’ hair. Catagen hair, begin transitional, live for about 7 to 15 days. During this transition phase, the growth activity of the hair stops. Growth of hair is not a continuous affair as some people think. Hair growing takes a resting phase during which no growth takes place and the roots of the resting hair become club-shaped. It is this condition that is called club hairs.TELOGEN HAIR (Resting Stage before Resumption Of Growth)Catagen hair live for some time and when they are in the state of rest without any change, they are called ‘Telogen’ hair. Telogen hair are also called club hair. They are in the state of rest for three to four months before they grow or are pushed from follicle due to growth of another hair or due to some harsh combing/ brushing or hard massaging/continuous drying of hair by hot hair-blower or in fight etc. All these are mechanical reasons.Factors that Influence the Hair GrowthAge: – Growth of hair is fastest from the age of fifteen to late twenties. The hair grows faster and the rate of growth slows down when the hair have grown to its maximum. There is no limit to maximum but some doctors are of the opinion that this limit is three feel which means that when the hair are over three feet long, the growth rate drops to half the former growth rate. Nervous and circulatory system: – The hair is affected by the state of the nervous system and circulatory system. This means that hair have a direct relation with functioning of the entire human organism, mind, sentiments, emotions and the body. Any such stimulation in the body by grief, emotions, etc. makes impact over the opulence of the nerve and blood supply to the head. If grief or emotions continue for some days, it affects the growth of hair.Chemicals & Drugs: – Chemical and drug reactions also affect the growth of hair. The coloring of hair and dyeing of hair are virtually exposure to chemical reactions and many persons who dye or color their hair have retarded hair growth or encounter falling of hair.Heredity: – The heredity/genes actually determine the hair density, growth and color of hair.Hormones: – Hormonal change is one of the reasons for growth of hair.Your Hair – An Index  to your Health….Our hair is not just ‘dead’ protein it is a pointer to what is happening deep inside our body and mind. Hair has more to it than what appears on the surface.  It says a lot more about us than what the stars foretell. The health of our hair and scalp provides us with insightful cues about a host of ‘latent’ health disorders.In addition, our hair, like our psyche, responds to both physical and emotional stressors, including underlying health deviations,  much before apparent clinical symptoms manifest.DRY, LIMP, THIN HAIR:-This may be a ‘cursor’ for hypothyroidism. In some cases, the ‘tell-tale’  sign is hair loss on the eyebrows, especially in the outer area of the eyebrow.SCALY  OR CRUSTY PATCHES ON THE SCALP:-This indicates psoriasis, a common skin disorder. It occurs when the skin for a ‘toss,’ sending out flawed signals that accelerate the turnover and growth of skin cells. The detection of psoriasis can help us prevent and treat more serious condition- especially psoriatic arthritis, or painful swelling of the joints with scaly psoriatic distress.OVERALL THINNING:-It’s customary to shed about 50-100 hairs a day. But, when hair appears to be coming out in ‘clumps,’ it’s time for action. Any extreme stress can be the reason for hair loss, liking losing a job can cause extreme hair loss. Likewise, about of flu or fever, illnesses like jaundice, typhoid and malaria can cause hair loss. Most importantly, diabetes and hypertension can also cause such hair loss, much before they may be clinically diagnosed. DRY, BRITTLE HAIR BREAKS EASILY:-This kind of hair loss can be a sign of autoimmune disorders, early onset diabetes and thyroid disease.

Hair Hair Everywhere!

Dr. Dilip Hemnani, Dermatologist
What is hair fall?Normally hair sheds daily from your scalp so that new healthy hair can grow from the root. This hair shedding is normal when you shed 50-100 hairs per day depending upon individual hair cycle and density. But if you are losing hairs more than 100 per day then it is a warning sign. You are definitely having hair fall.Who can have hair fall?Anyone from a 6 months old child to old age person can experience hair fall. It's just that reason for hair fall and pattern of hair fall is different for different age group, sex and disease you are suffering.Warning signs!You should get alert when u starts seeing your hair on pillows, comb, sinks, working station. If you feel that the volume of your pony tail or braid is decreasing day by day it is the time to consult the doctor. In males receding hair line with balding is the sign to start your treatment.What are the causes of hair fall?Synchronous hair shedding- Suddenly all the hair of an infant may shed at a time and child may become bald overnight. Nothing to worry. It is a physiological phenomenon and hair will come back soon.Nutrition related – This type of hair fall can be seen in any age group and sex. Due to iron, protein, vitamins deficiency patient may experience stunted growth and hair fall.Male and female pattern hair loss- In males this type of hair loss is seen because of hormone named testosterone. In these cases, patient start losing hair from the frontal area slowly extending to crown and if proper care and treatment not taken on time may lead to complete baldness leaving only few cm of fringe of hairs at back of scalp.In females this type of hair loss may be seen due to hormonal imbalance either due to poly cystic ovary syndrome or androgen excess. In this type of hair loss female starts losing hair from frontal, midline and finally from the crown area. Hair line is shifted away from the forehead.Hair styling related hair loss- excessive blow drying of hair, hair straightening, colouring of hair all can lead to severe hair loss. So beware and think twice before using any hair styling tools.Stress related- stress may be of different types either mental or physical any type of stress can lead to hair loss and is called as telogen effluvium. Even post pregnancy, post any surgery you can lose lot of hairs.Alopecia areata- this is a condition where immune balance of the body is disturbed and patient starts losing hair in patches. Round to oval bald patches measuring from few mms to cm are seen at any part of scalp. In severe cases this may lead to loss of hair of whole bodyDisease related hair loss- many a time many systemic diseases are associated with diffuse hair loss.Medication related hair loss- few medicines also lead to hair loss after taking for few months. Most notorious being anti-cancer drugs.How can you avoid hair loss?Healthy eating habits: sufficient quantity of fruits, proteins and vegetables should be consumed dailyHealthy life style: regular sleep pattern, less stress and exercise will keep your hormones balanced and cause less hair fallTreatment of underlying cause: unless and until the cause of hair loss is not treated hair loss cannot be controlledHow can hair loss be treated?Multiple treatments are available for hair loss. The doctor evaluates the type of hair loss patient is suffering and accordingly the treatment is givenMedical therapyDepending on the underlying condition many times medical line of treatment is enough for hair fallOral tablets/capsules and lotions to apply can be used to treat hair fallSurgical therapyTotal loss of hair follicle cannot be treated with help of medicines. Hair transplant is the last resort. We remove hair from the back of scalp which are resistant to fall and is transplanted in the front and crown area. We even design proper hair line to give it a natural look.  Newer modalities of treatmentPRP and MESO therapy are the new therapies in the basket. Here we inject the cocktail of growth factors in the scalp, which boost up the faster hair growth as well as it helps to sustain longerGEOHAIR- is another new modality where in scalp is subjected to infra red light system boosting up the blood supply and hair growthInvest in your hair it is the crown you will never take off!

Top Causes of Hair Loss and Hair Thinning in Women

Dr. Jolly Shah Kapadia, Dermatologist
For women, hair means way more than a bundle of fibres. Long or short, bouncy or straight, it's an expression of your style and personality. Losing those lovely tresses can really freak you out. Hair Loss, a nightmareWhether it’s short- or long-term, women lose hair the same way men do. It might thin all over, or your centre part could get wider and wider. You might even get a bald spot at the crown of your head. Rarely women also have a receding front hairline.How Does Hair Grow?Your scalp has about 1,00,000 hair. Each one has its own life cycle. A follicle produces a single hair that grows at a rate of half an inch per month. It stays for 2 to 6 years, then stops for about a month. When the next cycle starts up, that hair falls out. At any given time, most of your hair are in the growth phase.How Much Hair Loss Is Normal?Most people shed about 50-100 hair every day. Don’t worry if you find a few in your hairbrush or on your clothes. But if it starts to fall out in clumps or if you notice it getting thinner over time, check with your Dermatologist.What are the root causes of Hair Loss?There’s no single cause. Triggers range from medical conditions, to stress and lifestyle factors, like what you eat. Your genes play a role, too. Sometimes there may not be a specific reason.Major Hair Loss Triggers in women: Thyroid Problems: If the thyroid makes too much or too little thyroid hormone,your hair growth cycle might get affected. You may develop progressive thinning of hair all over the scalp.PCOS: If you have polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), your hormones are always shaky. Your body makes more male hormones, or androgen, than it should. This can cause extra hair on your face and body while the hair on your head thins out. PCOS can also lead to ovulation problems, acne, and weight gain. But sometimes thinning hair is the only obvious sign.Childbirth: You might notice your hair seems fuller during pregnancy.That’s because high hormone levels keep resting hairs from falling out. But after the baby comes, things go back to normal and those strands will fall out quickly. You could lose a lot of hair at once. It could take up to 2 years for your lovely hair to return to normal.The Pill: The hormones that suppress ovulation can also thin out your hair.You can also lose hair when you stop taking the pill. Medicines: Drugs like blood thinners those which treat high blood pressure, heart disease, arthritis, and depression; methotrexate, cholesterol lowering medications, chemotherapeutic agents etc. can cause hair loss.Crash Diets: You may lose more than weight with a fad diet. And if you lose weight more rapidly, you might also lose hair in a couple of months. Deficiency: A longstanding deficiency of Iron, Folic acid, and other nutrients can also trigger off hair loss and thinning.Tight Hairstyles: Wearing tight ponytails can irritate your scalp and cause hair to fall out. Long-term use of these styles can scar your scalp and lead to permanent hair loss.Cancer Treatment: Chemo and radiation therapy, two of the most widely used therapies, can take a toll on your hair. In their quest to kill cancer cells, both can harm hair follicles and trigger dramatic hair loss. But the damage is almost always short-lived. Once your treatment is finished, hair usually grows back.Extreme Stress: High-level physical or emotional stress can cause you to suddenly shed huge amounts of hair. The process may last 6 to 8 months. Examples of extreme stress are: - Serious illness- Major surgery- Trauma involving blood loss- Severe emotional distressHope this gives you a fair idea about the possible reasons for losing your crowning glory.The good news is, there's often a way to fix it. I will deal with the same in my next health feed. Till then, take care of your Hair!

Patchy Hair Falling - Alopecia Areata

Dr. D.Senthil Kumar, Homeopath
Alopecia areataAlopecia areata means hair loss in small, round patches any where in hairy parts of the body. The most affected part is  scalp. Alopecia areata can cause tremendous emotional and psychosocial stress in affected patients and their families. Alopecia areata can progress to complete loss of all body hair. Causes of Alopecia Areata,There is no specific causes for alopecia areata. But some factors may considerGenetic factors play an important roleThere is a higher frequency of a family history of alopecia areata in people who are affected.Autoimmune factor causing the patient to develop antibodies to different hair follicle structures.Some chemicals that are a part of the immune system called cytokines may play a role in alopecia areata by inhibiting hair follicle growth.Emotional stress may also cause alopecia areata.Appearance of Alopecia AreataThe typical patch of alopecia areata is usually round or oval, and is completely bald and smooth."Exclamation-mark" hairs may be seen at the margin of the patch.Some broken, short hairs that taper at the base.Nail involvementNail involvement found most commonly seen in patients with severe forms of alopecia areata.Pitting is the most common finding.Several other abnormalities have been reported (e.g., trachyonychia, Beau lines, onychorrhexis, onychomadesis, koilonychia, leukonychia, red lunulae).Fingernails predominantly are affected.Alopecia Types and DefinitionsAlopecia Areata - Patch like hair fallingAlopecia Partialis - Hair falling in one half side of the scalp or in limbs or in face.Alopecia totalis - complete falling of hairs in scalp (not baldness)Alopecia Universalis - complete loss of hair all over the hair (complete hair falling in scalp, face, arm pit, pubic, and limbs)Alopecia areata can be classified according to its pattern.Patchy alopecia areata - Hair loss most often is localized and patchyOphiasis pattern of alopecia areata - A reticular pattern occurs when hair loss is more extensive and the patches coalesce. An ophiasis pattern occurs when the hair losses is localized to the sides and lower back of the scalpSisaipho pattern of alopecia areata - Conversely, sisaipho (ophiasis spelled backwards) pattern occurs when hair loss spares the sides and back of the headAlopecia totalis - Alopecia totalis occurs with 100% hair loss on the scalpAlopecia universalis - Alopecia universalis occurs with complete loss of hair on all hair-bearing areasDiffuse alopecia areata - Alopecia areata usually is focal; however, it can be diffuse, thereby mimicking Telogen effluvium (TE) or the type of androgenetic alopecia seen in womenHomeopathy treatment for Alopecia AreataSymptomatic Homoeopathy medicines acts well in Alopecia Areata, Alopecia totalis, Alopecia partialis cases. Homeo medicines works well without any side effects. 

Hair Transplant - How to Decide for or Against

Dr.MK AGARWALA, Dermatologist
Hair Transplant industry is the next big financial revolution happening in our country. The profits involved are large and the risk minimum as compared to most of the other organ transplant. It has made every Tom, Dick and Harry thinking that it is in their domain and when a complication happens such unlicensed clinics get the limelight as the recent death of a medical student post hair transplant in Chennai. The prospective patients should utilize their wisdom before making such an important decision. DO NOT FALL PREY TO CHEEKY HEADLINES AND BIG ADVERTISEMENTS.  The cause of hair fall needs to be established before proceeding for a hair fall therapy and it is easily done by a clinical examination alone most of the times. In a minority of cases, where clinical dilemma happens, a skin biopsy should be performed to prognosticate the success of hair transplant. Hair transplant is mainly performed for a condition called pattern baldness. There are certain things to understand before deciding for or against the procedure. Most of us would have done a basic research before thinking of the procedure. If you have done your research & understanding and are willing to step ahead with surgery, then the surgical options of FUE and FUT has to be discussed with your doctor. There are minor modifications done in these two techniques in an attempt to increase end results but technically they fall into FUE or FUT. You can take opinion from the hair transplant surgeon or there are various websites to make you understand the same. FUE and FUT are good standard protocols with independent merit and demerits; you should discuss this during your consultation. Coming back to pre-transplant decision stage, hair transplant is not a treatment to the core cause of male pattern baldness and you must understand this. The hairs from the back of your scalp are redistributed to the front and sides to cover those bald areas. The hairs from the back of the scalp have an advantage that they are not affected by hormones which cause hair loss in form of male pattern baldness. However they do have a natural life and will die out eventually. Second the hair follicles removed from the back will not re-grow. You may have apprehensions that the areas from which hair have been plucked will appear bald but this is not true as your hair transplant surgeon does the art that even after removing a few thousand follicles, the baldness is not evident. Third, the standard medications for baldness will still have to be continued for many reasons- to increase the life of transplanted hair, to preserve other hairs and the most obvious reason that hair transplant is not a cure for the underlying pathology. It is good to have a few sessions of platelet rich plasma (PRP) treatment along with a hair transplant as they increase the likelihood of graft survival. Certain centers offer them in package and you can strike a bargain. Hair transplant centers have mushroomed in our country, so be careful in your choice of a hair transplant surgeon. It also involves good amount of cost, so discuss and understand all pros and cons. Having said all that, cases where hair transplant is needed and if done perfectly, final results are encouraging and make a huge difference to the personality. Complications in hair transplant can happen in any part of the operative procedure, during anesthesia or later but that is so for all other transplant operations as well. Discuss the same with your doctor.

A Complete Solution for Hair Fall by Ayurveda

Rekha Kumar Naidu
Although hair fall is considered as a common problem, it is one of the complex problem. Hair fall has to be dealt from the roots; understanding the root cause.In some cases modifying your daily diet and lifestyle helps to put an end to hair loss.                     DIET RECOMMENDATIONS FOR HAIR LOSS  Aloe Vera - Positive results can be seen by consuming aloe vera juice with 1/2 spoon of cumin powder 2 times a day for 3 months.Yogurt - contains lots at good bacteria , zinc and minerals. Consuming it daily in the afternoons can reduce hair fall.Curry Leaves & Green Leaves Vegetables - Include curry leaves and green leafy vegetables in your daily diet. They are rich in fiber Nuts - Include nuts and dry fruits like dates, almonds, pistachios. A few pieces of nuts daily can be very helpful in hair and skincareLemon & Oranges - Vitamin C helps in iron absorption thereby strengthening the hair follicles preventing hair loss. Including them regularly in your diet helps in detoxification bringing glow to hair and skinProper sleep, Adequate water intake, balanced diet including fresh and bright coloured fruits and vegetables is essential to prevent all disorders including hair lossAYURVEDA HAIR REMEDIES1. Hair packs for shiny hair 10 Hibiscus flowers (petals only)½ tablespoon of finely powdered fenugreek ½ to 1liter of waterSoak all the ingredients in water overnight Morning crush with hand and filter the content. Apply it on hair and soak for 20 min Wash with plain cold water thoroughly  2. Hair pack for Dandruff and Hairfall1 cup yogur1 eggP1 lemon Mix the above to make a pastApply in hair for 20 mins and cover with shower cap. Wash hair with warm water and a mild herbal shampoo.GENERAL IDEAS TO PREVENT AND CARE HAIR FALLMassage hair with a mixture of coconut oil (4 tablespoon ) + sesame oil (2 tablespoon ) + castor oil (½ tablespoon) Massaging hair with olive oil or Vitamin E oil is also helpfulApplying freshly grinded   Bhringaraja paste (karesalakanni) on hair delays the process of greying hairApplying the juice of Indian goose beery (Amla) on the scalp with a mild massage can help in reducing hair fall and dandruffRubbing small onion on bald head can promote hair growth .  

5 Things Your Parlourwali Wont Tell You About Hair Care

Dr. Rashmi Joshi, Dermatologist
Each strand of hair consists of a root, shaft and the tip of the hair follicle. Our hair comprises of complex parts and its growth and regeneration are part of a constant cycle of new hair growth and shedding of old strands. Majority of the hair are in the anagen (growing) phase whereas 1 to 2% are in the catagen(shedding) phase. The remaining hair are in telogen or resting phase.Hair is an integral part of a beauty of a person. Our hair are often not given much attention until it is lost. The common tips that any parlour wali will give you is regular oiling of hair and use of a good conditioner, but so here are few tips for hair care that neither your friends or your parlour wali will tell you:Hair needs nutrition mostly in the form of proteins and vitamins. Hair is easily affected by the lack of keratin protein. One must have adequate intake of pulses, carrots, spinach leaves, soya, paneer, gram, papaya,mango, coriander leaves etc. These foods taken even in moderate quantity will improve the quality of the hair. Keratin contributes to the strength and endurance of the hair shaft.“Amla”/”Indian gooseberry” is one of the richest sources of vitamin C and can be consumed daily for natural dark hair colour and thicker hair growth.Oiling provides nutrition to the roots. Hibiscus flowers also called as“jaswand” in India is one of the most nutritive flowers for the hair. Soak 4 to 5 hibiscus flowers in a cup of hair oil for 10 days in the sun and then crush the hibiscus flowers till they are uniformly mixed with the oil. Use this as your hair oil and watch hairfall and dandruff curtail dramatically.Fenugreek seeds are not thought of in context with hair nutrition but are a great additive to your hair care regime. Soak fenugreek seeds in a small cup of water and grind it into a smooth paste. Apply this paste all over your hair once a week to improve shine and conditioning of the hair. This will remove traces of dandruff and bring back the bounce of your hair.Use a hair mask once a week to restore the lustre of your hair. Mix equal quantities of gooseberry powder with sandalwood powder in rose water and apply over the entire length of the hair along with scalp. This will bring about effective regeneration and increase in volume of hair.

5 Important Nutrition Choices to Prevent Hair Loss

Ms. Swati Kapoor, Dietitian/Nutritionist
Just like your skin, the condition of your hair also shows the status of your internal health.The cells that make up each strand of hair require a regular supply of key nutrients. Here is a list.Importance of proteinThe most important component of each hair strand.If you are not consuming enough protein, you can face hair problems like hair loss,thinning of hair etc.For lustrous and healthy hair, opt for good sources of protein like egg , fish,chicken , milk and milk products, legumes and nuts.IronIt is one of the most important mineral for hair. Too little iron in your diet is a major cause for hair lossWhen iron levels (serum ferritin) fall below a certain point, you may experience anaemia. This disrupts the nutrient supply to the follicle, affecting the hair growth cycle and may result in sheddingVegetarians can raise their iron stores by including lentils,spinach and other leafy green vegetables such as broccoli, kale and salad greensNon vegetarians can include chicken, fish and egg in their dietOmega 3 fatty acidsThese are essential fats which you need to get from external sourcesOmega-3s are found in the cells that line the scalp and also provide the oils that keep your scalp and hair hydratedEat fish, seeds like pumpkin, nuts and avocadoZincZinc Deficiency leads to changes in the protein structure of hair follicles leading to weakening of their structural integrity. This means new hair will fall off much more quickly than their normal paceTo avoid hair loss or greying of hair, include seeds, nuts, eggs and soy productsVitamin CVitamin C aids the absorption of iron so food items high in vitamin C are good to eat in conjunction with iron-rich foodsThe best sources of vitamin C are oranges, kiwis, guavas, strawberries, broccoli, papayas and sweet potatoes