Do you suffer from a form of hair loss referred to as “traction alopecia”? This term reflects to hair loss that is caused by scalp stress, specifically the stress created by traction or the repeated tight pulling and tugging on the hair shaft. This constant, tight pulling or tugging on the hair shaft loosens the grip of the hair shaft in the follicle and increased hair loss occurs.
Specific Causes of Scalp Stress
It is hard to imagine that a woman in her early twenties would consider hair transplants but this is happening in increasing numbers all over the world. The reason for the need to consider hair transplants is a condition called Traction alopecia. Traction alopecia is a hair loss condition that results from damage to the derma papilla and hair follicle from constant pulling and tugging on the hair shaft over extended periods of time. This tugging and pulling on the hair shaft can look like hairstyles that comprise tightly woven cornrows or neatly plaited braids or pigtails or any style that involves tightly weaving the hair and pulling it tightly and securely.
Not Just for Women
Traction alopecia is not just for women. While the number of women who suffer with the condition is great, especially among women of color, there are increasing numbers of men who are experiencing increased hair loss from traction alopecia. The hairstyles described above are being worn by males and females and it is not necessarily a condition that gets its roots in any particular ethnicity. Any person who subjects their hair to styles that pulls and tugs tightly on the hair shaft for an extended period of time can suffer damage to hair follicles that will cause the form of hair loss called Traction alopecia.
Another Cause of Traction Alopecia
Did you know that over processing your hair can also cause scalp stress that leads to this form of hair loss? When you chemically treat your hair with dyes, bleaches or straighteners, you disrupt the keratin structure of the hair in a way that reduces its tensile strength. The hair can then become quite brittle and you will notice a great deal more hair falling out when you comb or brush your hair.
The Best Traction Alopecia Treatment
The best way to protect yourself from this condition is change the way you style your hair. Changing to looser style is best, if you continue to wear your hair in tightly woven cornrows, tightly braided plaits or any type of tight hair weaving, you'll continue to cause damage to the very follicles you're trying to repair. Taking extra care to avoid the use of chemical dyes, bleaches and straighteners will also help reduce the scalp stress that leads to this condition.
No Cure Available
This condition is really not much different from many types of major diseases in that early detection is the best treatment option. There is no real cure or way to reverse late-stage traction alopecia and hair grafts have been identified as the only practical option for many who suffer from this condition.
When detected early, treatment should be focused on repairing damaged hair follicles, nutrition, and increasing scalp circulation to stimulate new hair growth. This can usually be achieved by using hair products that boost circulation and scalp massages.
It is important to understand that each of your hair follicles is pre-programmed to go through the three stages of the hair growth cycle and each is pre-programmed for this cycle to occur a specific number of times. The growth cycle of each hair strand can range from two to eight years and it will be shed after that time. If you are subjecting your hair to unreasonable scalp stress, you will cause damage to the hair follicles that will result in the form of hair loss called Traction alopecia. You do have some control and, if you wish to maintain a healthy head of hair as long as possible, it is in your best interests to exercise some of that control. The time it takes to recover from traction alopecia depends on how extensive the damage is.