Monday, 17 November 2014

Cause Of Hair Loss - A Comprehensive 13 Point Checklist

 

 

Cause Of Hair Loss - A Comprehensive 13 Point Checklist

By Mike Jones

There may not be a single cause of hair loss in many cases but rather a number of factors may contribute to thinning or losing hair.

The following 13 point checklist will help you identify which causes of hair loss may apply in your case. But first a word about hair growth cycles.

Hair Growth Cycles

Hair is constantly going through cycles of growth, resting, shedding. When hairs that are lost are not replaced, or when more hair follicles go into the resting phase, hair loss becomes noticeable.

While there is ongoing debate regarding causes of hair loss, the list below shows many of the common contributing factors:

#1: Ageing

The period for hair loss is between the 20 and 50 years of age. Some individuals arrive at the advance stages of hair loss sooner than others although it becomes increasingly evident as people advance in age.

#2: Cosmetic Chemicals

This can be an unrecognized cause of hair loss, especially bleaching, permanents, and coloring products.

#3: Drugs/Medications/Radiation

This cause of hair loss can include anticoagulants, antidepressants, contraceptive pills, amphetamines, some arthritis medications, some antibiotics, some blood thinners, medicines for gout, drugs derived from vitamin-A, certain drugs for ulcers, beta blocker drugs for high blood pressure.

Cancer treatments such as chemotherapy and radiation therapy halt the growth phase of hair follicles which results in a sudden hair loss as those follicles all shed their hair at about the same time.

#4: Heredity

Androgenetic alopecia is the term used to describe a genetic predisposition in men and women for pattern baldness or pattern hair loss. Although there is a dominant tendency for male pattern baldness, female members of a family can be transmitters as well.

#5: Hormonal Imbalance

If the male and female hormones, androgens and estrogens, are out of balance, hair loss may result. Also an overactive or underactive thyroid gland can contribute to hair loss.

#6: Illness and Severe Infections

These can include scalp fungal infections, Thyroid disorders, Hyperthyroidism, Hypothyroidism, Diabetes, Lupus.

#7: Immune System Disorder

Alopecia areata is an immune system disorder which causes hair follicles to stop producing hairs. Advanced forms of the disorder are identified by the terms alopecia totalis when all head hair disappears, and alopecia universalis which results in all body hair disappearing.

#8: Menopause

This can be a main cause of hair loss in women. Due to hormonal changes after menopause, some women find their hair begins to thin.

There are a variety of treatments available involving hormone replacement therapy (HRT). There may be side effects in some cases and experimentation may be necessary under the guidance of a physician.

#9: Poor Blood Circulation

Poor blood flow to the scalp, insufficient nutrients in the blood, or poor drainage of waste products through the lymphatic systems can all contribute to hair loss.

#10: Pregnancy

Three to six months after delivering a child, many women notice a degree of hair loss as the hair goes into a resting phase because of the physiological impact of the pregnancy on the body.

#11: Pulling

Traction Alopecia is the term used to describe loss of hair from constant pulling, as with tightly braided hair styles such as pony tails.

Also the improper use of curling tongs or rollers can tug the hair so it weakens.

#12: Sebum Buildup

A basic cause of hair loss is sebum buildup in the follicles which attacks the hair bulb, the rounded area at the end of a hair strand which is rooted in the follicle. Sebum causes the hair bulb to shrink so the hair is not as well rooted.

After the hair falls out the new hair strand growing in that follicle is weaker and thinner and the process is repeated until the hair follicle is so damaged it dies. (Sebum is a fatty substance secreted from the sebaceous glands most of which open into hair follicles.)

#13: Stress and Nervous Disorders

Telogen Effluvium is the term used for a slowing down of new hair growth because of sudden or severe stress. The stress triggers a large number of hair follicles to enter the resting stage, so a few months after the stressful event, those follicles shed hair at about the same time.

From the list above you may be able to identify the main cause of hair loss in your case. Don't hesitate to get professional advice from a medical practitioner if the reason is beyond your direct control. Early action can save much anxiety later!

 

 

 

Hair Loss In Men - The Warning Signs

With hair loss in men, hair at the temples recedes and the crown can also begin to thin.

Eventually a horse shoe pattern around the sides of the head appears.

The main signs of hair loss in men:

  1. Receding hairline
  2. Moderate to extensive hair loss, particularly on the crown of the head

About ninety-five percent of hair loss in men is attributable to Androgenic Alopecia also know as male pattern baldness.

Some believe this condition includes three factors:

  • age
  • heredity
  • the male hormone testosterone

As hair loss in men progresses, the hair becomes finer, does not grow so long and the bald spot at the crown widens.

Finally, the thinning crown and the receding points may meet forming a horseshoe pattern with hair around the sides of the head.

Hair loss in men can begin as early as 20 although for the majority of men, hair loss is more noticeable from the age of 35 to 40.

The Main Culprit For Hair Loss In Men - DHT

DHT (Dihydrotestosterone) is recognized as a main culprit. DHT is a combination of testosterone and androgen receptors mixed with sebum and dirt particles. Some hair follicles are particularly sensitive to DHT and tend to shrink when exposed to it. Finally the hair follicle may shut down altogether and the hair falls out.

Another condition is called Alopecia Areata, in which hair comes out by the roots in one or more spots. It is much less common than Androgenic Alopecia.

Other causes of hair loss in men can include scalp infections, nutritional deficiency, systemic illness, and severe stress.

Monday, 3 November 2014

Understanding Mood Disorders

 

 

 

Understanding Mood Disorders

By Jay Miller

Its shocking to note that mood disorders these days are not uncommon. In the United States alone it is estimated that between 15 and 20 million people suffer from depressive disorders. Most symptoms of depression would be characterized as overwhelming sadness and loss of joy and pleasure in daily activities. Depression has been called the "common cold of mental illness," not indicating that symptoms of depression are mild, but because they are widespread.

Bipolar disorder is one of many types of depression that affects many individuals. More recently this disorder has been given more public light. Symptoms of this disorder often include mixed states of mania and depression. Often times during the depression phase of bipolar disorder patients are plagued with thoughts of suicide, while during the manic phase the patient has far more energy than normal. Often times they are very talkative, and experience a huge boost in self-confidence.

It is estimated that bipolar disorder affects about 2.3 million adults in the United States in any given year. A worldwide accounting of bipolar disorder in adults is a lot higher. Statistical numbers of mood disorders cannot, however, descibe the pain and suffering that such ones go through.

Depression

Everyone experiences a "case of the blues" from time to time, but most often it only lasts a relatively short time. This would not be considered clinical depression, which is far more serious than a "case of the blues."

What causes clinical depression? While it is not fully understood as to all the causes of clinical depression it is noted that there are many biological and emotional factors that contribute to the development of a severe depressive disorder. It effects more than 19 million American's a year, and it is estimated that approximately 3% to 5% of teenagers suffer from clinical depression every year.

Those suffering from chronic depression often fail to realize the seriousness of their condition. Just how serious is it? It has often been linked to lack of performance, alcohol and drug abuse, severe feelings of worthlessnes and guilt, and in many cases suicide.

Often times having an empathetic friend that will lend a listening ear can bring great relief. However because the biochemical factor that is involved with the disorder it is not often realistic to rely solely on your friends listening ear.

Mood disorders such as clinical depression often have a great impact on family members. However, there are things that family members can do to help those ailing from the condition. Wholehearted support is vital when a loved one is suffering from this disorder. It is often helpful to study up on the condition and become thoroughly familiar with the disorder. This will allow ones to be able to better cope and deal with the sufferer.

The study results conclude that mood disorder and depression are two Faces of the same coin. We can call depression as a symptom of mood disorder. Feeling of hopelessness, apathy and low energy are indications of depression. Mood disorder is also characterized by failures and rejections in ones life. It is both a psychotic and a neurotic condition.

Depression is mainly because of the consequences of life such as the death of kin etc. Most of these kinds of depression (bipolar) fade away with the time and as one takes the new situation in his/her stride. It is not for nothing that they say time is the best healer. The chronic mood disorders (unipolar), in some cases genetic, require medical attention as they can be life threatening (suicides). The unipolar mood disorders are major types and clinical attention is necessary. No amount of love from kin, positive thinking or counseling can help. Medical assistance is imperative to cure the depression spread over sessions. Lack of treatment can result in permanent behavioral disorder.

Off late is believed that depression is connected to deficiency of norepinephrine and serotonin. Drug therapy uses various antidepressants. Caution needs to be exercised in administration of drug supplements in bipolar patients. Mood disorders or depressions of unipolar type has benefited from electroconvulsive therapy.

Psychologists have argued in recent years that the depression or the mood disorder is a result of learned helplessness when a person understands his actions have been useless and looses hope. It is also found that such people are emotionally dependent on others for morale boosting.

The most determinants of mood disorder are tackled even without medication. But non-negligence and timely diagnosis (initial diagnosis need not be even at the psychiatrist's site) can result preventing physical and physiological disorders and alcoholism etc.

Bipolar Disorder

Living with depression can be a great challenge, but the challenge is even greater when it is coupled with mania, a mood swing in bipolar disorder. Family members may often be confused as to the erratic behavior of those suffering from bipolar disorder. States Becky, "Its hard to see my brother switching from a happy person to such a sad person so suddenly. It's very hard on all of the family, we all feel helpless like there is nothing we can do."

Bipolar's effects are not just directed one way. Often times the pain is reflected inwards as well to the sufferer. The patient suffering from bipolar disorder may often be left confused at the lack of stability in their life.

What is the cause of bipolar disorder? Through several studies scientists are trying to uncover the cause of bipolar disorder. While there is no known single cause of bipolar disorder it is know that genetics plays a big part in the cause. Family members that are directly related to ones who suffer from bipolar depression have a greater chance of developing the bipolar or major depression in your lifetime.

Bipolar disorder knows no gender, and has an equal opportunity of affecting both sexes. Most often the disorder starts developing in young adulthood, however cases studies have shown development of the disorder in younger age groups. Since the symptoms are so wide in their range it is often hard to detect, especially when intervals between mania and depression can last years.

While living with depression or bipolar depression may be hard, and equally as hard to diagnose there is hope for those that suffer from them.