Treatable Types Of Hair Loss
Male-pattern baldness is the most common type of hair loss, affecting around half of all men by 50 years of age. It usually starts around the late twenties or early thirties and most men have some degree of hair loss by their late thirties.
It generally follows a pattern of a receding hairline, followed by thinning of the hair on the crown and temples, leaving a horseshoe shape around the back and sides of the head. Sometimes it can progress to complete baldness, although this is uncommon.
Male-pattern baldness is hereditary, which means it runs in families.
As well as affecting men, hair loss can sometimes affect women too (female-pattern baldness). During female-pattern baldness, hair usually only thins on top of the head, causing the affected area and portion of the hair to appear thin and wispy. The affected area appears to contain fewer healthy hair follicles and is understandably quite a stressful condition.
It's not clear if female-pattern baldness is hereditary and the causes are less well understood than Male-pattern baldness. Female-pattern baldness tends to be more noticeable in women who have been through the menopause.
Alopecia is a condition affecting the scalp in either patches or across the entire area of the scalp. The most common form of Alopecia is Alopecia Areata which causes patches of baldness about the size of a large coin. These usually appear on the scalp but can occur anywhere on the body. Alopecia Areata can occur at any age, but mostly affects teenagers and young adults.
In most cases of Alopecia Areata, the hair will grow back after a period of time (typically a few months). At first, hair may grow back fine and white, but over time this should thicken and regain a normal coloration. Some people go on to develop a more severe form of hair loss, such as Alopecia Totalis, (no scalp hair) and Alopecia Universalis, (no hair on the scalp and body).
Scarring or Scarring Alopecia, also known as Cicatricial Alopecia, is usually caused by skin damage or complications of another condition. With Scarring Alopecia the hair follicle is completely destroyed. Depending on the condition, the skin where the hair has fallen out is likely to be affected in some way.
Hair Thinning (Anagen / Telogen Effluvium)
Anagen effluvium is widespread hair loss that can affect up to 90% of your scalp and which is often caused by radiation therapy and chemotherapy. In most cases, hair loss in anagen effluvium is temporary. Your hair should start to grow back a few months after medicinal treatment has stopped.
Telogen effluvium is a common type of alopecia where there is widespread thinning of the hair, rather than specific bald patches. The hair may feel thinner, but it is unlikely that all hair on the body is affected. Telogen effluvium can be caused by your body reacting to hormonal changes, intense emotional stress, intense physical stress, short-term illness and / or some medications.