Hair fall happens to everyone. According to the American Association of Dermatology, it is normal for someone to experience hair fall anywhere between 50-100 strands on a daily basis. Anything in excess is considered hair loss and not hair fall. However, most of us tend to assume that the problem of hair loss will just magically go away with minimal intervention but that’s not true at all. Data suggests that by the time men turn 30, there is a 60% chance of them going bald and by the age of 50, the percentage rises up to a solid 80%.
What Is Causing Genetic Hair Loss?
What many of us believe is that hair fall is just hereditary. We then blame this on our parents for giving us the wrong set of genes that cause hair loss but don’t really take any measures to stop this hair loss. Sure, we do resort to anti-hair fall shampoos and home remedies but let’s face it, none of this actually helps and this is because we don’t know what is actually causing hair fall. We’re here to tell you just that.
Genetic hair fall is scientifically called androgenic alopecia. This is because of the androgen hormones like testosterone and Dihydrotestosterone (DHT) that are involved in it. Dihydrotestosterone or DHT is a hormone that is present in our body be it, males or females. It’s basically like a younger brother of the hormone testosterone, this means that DHT and testosterone have more or less the same responsibilities. Ideally, it is mainly involved with bringing out male characteristics like muscular strength, a hoarse masculine voice, and beard hair growth. In the body, testosterone is converted to DHT by an enzyme called 5 alpha-reductase.
According to Dermatologist - Dr. Siddhi Sonawane, a spike in DHT levels has a reversal effect on scalp hair and beard hair. When DHT levels rise in the body, they increase beard hair growth but as for hair on the scalp, they begin to thin and fall off. Now you might be wondering how DHT increases in the body. Well, Genetics. If anyone in your family has hair loss, then you should know that you are twice as likely to have a genetic sensitivity to the hormone DHT. This means it is very likely that by simple triggers, DHT levels can rise in the body and cause hair loss.
Now, what DHT does is it attacks the roots of the hair follicle and shrinks the diameter of the follicle. This causes the hair to get thinner and thinner with every hair cycle and eventually it falls off.
But DHT Is Not The Only Reason That’s Behind Genetic Hair Fall
Agreed that the sensitivity to the hormone DHT is a genetic factor but there are also a number of factors that directly affects the rise in DHT levels. More than 90% of the time these factors are internal and need to be treated from within. These include.
Lack Of Sleep: The Circadian cycle also called the sleep-wake cycle plays an important role in hair health. This is why sleep is of utmost importance when it comes to literally any organ activity. Irregular sleeping patterns also aggravate stress and cause hair thinning. A hormone called melatonin is released during sleep which is very essential for the smooth functioning of the hair cycle. This melatonin also works against DHT - the main hormone responsible for hair fall where it causes DHT to unbind from the hair follicle receptors. Lastly, if melatonin is not produced in equal amounts due to not getting proper 8 hours of sleep, this can hamper the cycle and cause genetic hair loss.
- Stressful Events: When stress builds up in the body, cortisol a.k.a the stress hormone takes control. Be it work stress, the loss of a loved one, or a serious traumatic event, in other words, both short-term and chronic stress hampers the regular functioning of the hair growth cycle and causes hair loss.
- Low Energy Levels: The body's ability to convert the food we eat to energy is what determines how much or how less energy we have. This is called metabolism. A good metabolism is required for the body to break down nutrients from food and supply them through the blood to the follicles. If the metabolism is slow that means most of the body's energy is being utilized to break down nutrients and supply them to other parts of the body other than hair. This is when hair gets neglected and causes DHT to carry out its regular activity of causing hair thinning in men.
- Hormonal Imbalance: The fact that hormonal issues cause hair fall is something that is new to everyone. Conditions like PCOS, thyroid imbalance, diabetes, menopause, and pregnancy all involve fluctuating hormones, and along with other hormones, it also takes a toll on the hormone DHT which causes it to spike and leads to severe hair shedding. In reality, hormonal-triggered hair loss is one of the leading causes of genetic hair loss.
- Nutritional Deficiencies: Hair needs food too. Biotin, iron, zinc etc as in all macro and micro nutrients are required by hair for it to grow in an ideal manner. This means that when any of these nutrients falls short in the body, it aggravates the hormone DHT and the excess of it has a negative effect on the hair strands and reflects as hair thinning along with looking dull, lifeless.
The 7 Stages Of Hair Loss One Must Know About.
Genetic Hair fall is also called pattern hair loss. Why “pattern” ? This is because this type of hair fall occurs gradually over a span of years and not months. And this gradual hair fall is visible in patterns which are different for men and women. Men notice more of a receding hair line and crowning at the top while women experience a widened partition.
Stages Of Hair Fall As Seen In Men
Stage 1: In men, the initial 2 stages are considered to be very mild where hair starts to become weaker with every hair cycle and stops growing at the temples also called as a receding hairline. This could start anywhere from teenage to early adulthood and the trigger factors for the same are listed in this blog.
Stage 2: At this stage the receding hairline gets extended further back to form an M shaped hairline. This is observed towards mid-adulthood in the life of a man i.e.between the ages 25 to 32.
Stage 3: This is the stage wherein hair thinning gets more visible not at the frontal hairline anymore but now at the crown area of the head which is called the top portion of the hair. Along with this stage, the receding hairline still keeps progressing.
Stage 4: It is between Stages 3 and 4 that balding can be easily diagnosed. This is the spot where now the shape of the remaining hair on the head begins to look like a ‘U’ and the hair thinning at the crown has reached its max.
Stage 5: From this stage onwards is when it gets difficult to regrow hair with the help of a hair treatment. This is because the amount of actively growing hair follicles begins to reduce to 30% and goes on reducing as the stages progresses. The advanced stage is when the follicles if not taken care of properly start sealing and closes completely. This stage is when balding becomes very advanced and is very visible as a horse-shoe pattern.
Stage 6: A fine thin strip is what is visible at the back of the head indicating advanced form of hair fall. The number of sealed follicles now overtake the number of actively growing follicles.
Stage 7: The 7th is the most advanced and severe stage of hair fall with very fine hair strands. This forms a horse-shoe pattern of hair which was earlier visible in stage 5 then becomes severe at the 7th stage.
Stages Of Hair Fall As Seen In Women
Stage 1: Women do not experience the same pattern of hair loss as compared to males. Women notice the first signs of thinning around the hair partition. How do you know if there is thinning? Just wet your hair or oil it and see if your scalp is more visible than it was earlier.
Stage 2: At this stage, in men, you will see your hairline has gone back quite a bit. And you are thinning in the top portion of your scalp or around your vortex (the spiral portion at the back of your scalp). In women, the partition will be wider and your hair loss would have increased.
Stage 3: Now your hair thinning and hairline recession has become noticeable enough for people around you to notice it. In men, you see the formation of an M-shape along with some scalp visibility. In women now your partition has become a wide strip and your hair quality has become poor. Your hair looks dull, lifeless and your poor growth.
No! Don't reach out for hair loss shampoo or oil. They will not help to resolve your hair loss. Look for a proper hair loss treatment like the one at Traya instead.
Stage 4: This is the final stage where you have a high chance of seeing improvement through medicinal treatments. The best treatment after this stage will be an invasive procedure like a hair transplant.
At this stage, in men, you can no longer see a defined hairline and even the crown area has significant hair thinning. Making your scalp quite visible. In women, your partition might have a small strip where the hair follicles have become inactive and your hair thinning has become widespread. You will also notice poor hair growth at this stage.
Stage 5: This is a phase of a maturing hairline which means the stage begins to advance with very little active follicles as also the follicle count for both men and women begins to decrease and the scalp visibility is very high. Here you also begin to notice frontal baldness and makes it difficult for hair to grow back to normal.
Stage 6: At this stage, hair thinning and hair fall are both happening rapidly. So your scalp is quite visible even when dry. For men, the hairline and crown area will have very few strands. In some people, the hairline will have bald patches on the sides. In women at this stage, there is baldness in the parting and the hair after the patch of balding has started to thin as well. At this point, hairline regrowth becomes difficult and the only treatment suitable for this is a hair transplant or a plasma therapy.
Stage 7: This is the stage where you have partial balding and hair density is normal only at the sides and back of your scalp. The hair strands exist in the middle of your scalp and they begin falling and thinning.
It is very important to note that hair fall that occurs anywhere between Stages of 1-4, can be easily treated using a hair treatment but if you fall under stages 5-7, the hair follicles are not very active and would need something like a hair transplant to revive them.
The Power Of 3-Sciences To Reverse Genetic Hair Fall
While prescription medications such as minoxidil, or finasteride work well to resolve the androgen-related implications on hair cycle, follicle health and hair thickness. They are not capable of tackling the internal health triggers listed above in a manner that ensures a long-term solution. This is why Traya brings in a 3x Formula that is a blend of 3 powerful sciences - Ayurveda, Dermatology and Nutrition together on one platform to treat something as stubborn as hair fall.
Ayurveda: Based on data collected from customers at Traya who filled the hair diagnosis form Dx, 52% suffer from hormonal imbalance, 76% suffer from constant stress and more. Since the internal root causes cannot be tackled by dermatological products, here is where Ayurvedic therapies and principles come into play, allowing us to not only fix present-day health issues that are aggravating your hair loss but also improving these systems to boost your overall health. Our Ayurvedic products contain 112 natural Ayurvedic herbs to heal the internal factors behind hair fall holistically from within.
Dermatology: Hair follicles are severely affected when you have hair loss due to DHT and other internal health triggers. Your hair follicles start shrinking and turn unhealthy due to reduced blood flow to the follicles. However, dermatology offers FDA approved serums like minoxidil, redensyl and finasteride that when applied directly to the scalp promotes nutrient-rich blood flow to the follicles and stimulates new hair growth. These help to increase hair thickness, manage hair loss and regrow healthier hair.
Diet: Ultimately, everything hair and skin comes down to a good and well-balanced diet. However, not all healthy foods are created equal. Certain foods are healthier for some but not recommended for those experiencing hair loss. For example: Diary is very good for calcium but is not suited for hair loss as it builds pitta or heat in the body and aggravates hair loss. This is why a healing diet is very important, something that targets your specific concerns.
How Long Does It Take To See Results / Regrow Hair?
Hair undergoes a hair cycle in a span of a few months. This means you can’t simply use just a shampoo or serum and expect that your hair will grow back in a month. If you are regular with the right treatment and maintain a healthy lifestyle and diet, it will take you a minimum of 2-3 months to get your hair fall under control and within 5 months you will definitely see new hair growth provided you are consistent.
How To Get Started With A Treatment?
Hair loss can be definitely managed if it is firstly diagnosed the right way, next by treating the internal root causes and lastly by staying true to the regime. You can follow the 3 simple steps to get started.
Step 1: Take the free hair test
With the help of a proprietary algorithm with 99% accuracy, you can get the right diagnosis which will help you identify the internal root cause and stage behind your hair fall.
Step 2: Buy your customized kit
Once you purchase the kit, our team of doctors - Ayurvedic Practitioner, Dermatologist and Nutritionist will build your prescription based on this root cause and stage of hair fall.
Step 3: Start your hair growth journey with a free diet plan and a hair coach
Once the kit arrives at your doorstep, you can simply start your treatment with a free diet plan and hair coach that will help you stay on track.