Hair loss an issue that worries them Hair loss an issue that worries them

Genetics, stress and age are common causes of hair disease in men.

Advisor Juan Jaime Atuesta Negret
General Dermatologist

Losing from 100 to 150 hairs each day is normal with the possibility of renewal. Nevertheless, there are situations where this loss becomes continuous and more abundant without indications of replacement. This causes baldness, especially in men. The most frequent form of this disease is androgenetic alopecia (genetic and hormonal) and is responsible for 95% of the cases. In fact, as Dermatologist Juan Jaime Atuesta, MD explains, it accounts for the largest number of consultations on matters pertaining to diseases of the scalp; second place is for seborrheic dermatitis.

The Mayo Clinic indicates that stress, intake of certain medicines and suffering from certain pathologies such as cancer, lupus and diabetes can also cause abnormal loss of hair and disorders in the natural processes of regeneration. In any case, the specialist based on his diagnosis will determine the best treatment for each patient. Following is a review of the most common disorders.

40% of men over 40 suffer from alopecia according to the United States National Library of Medicine

Alopecia

Known as baldness consists of the progressive miniaturization of the hair follicle (hair of the scalp). In case of decisive genetic influence, it may present at 20 years of age. It begins with hair loss in the frontal area and crown until the person is completely bald in these areas. It is not preventable. If alopecia is slight it can be treated with topical (external) medication; if it is moderate, there is generally a combination of topical and oral medication. If severe or very advanced, surgical procedures are used. Included in among those are micro implants or micro grafting.

Seborrheic dermatitis

Defined as dandruff is a disorder that produces excess peeling of the scalp due to an inflammatory process caused by a fungus that all human beings have on their skin called Malassezia. Therefore, people susceptible to the action of this fungus present with this disease as there is no way of preventing it. It is treated with medicated shampoos but, according to severity, may require oral medication.

Psoriasis

Is an inflammatory scalp disorder that produces reddening and severe peeling much stronger than the one produced by seborrheic dermatitis as it depends on the person’s genetic predisposition. The severity determines treatment either with topical (external) or systemic (oral) medication.

Folliculitis

Is the inflammation of the hair follicle produced, in general, by bacteria and on occasions, by fungi. It presents as reddening, pain, itching and pustules (blisters) at the birth point of the hair follicle. For treatment one must first perform a bacterial culture to determine the type of bacteria and on that basis prescribe the antibiotics, generally taken orally and a shampoo with antibacterial action. This contagious disease can be prevented by attending only aseptic beauty salons, not sharing utensils for the hair such as hair brushes, combs, hats, hoods, washing of the hands and generally maintaining a good hygiene.

Symptoms of hair loss

Mayo Clinic lists some signs for alarm:

  • Gradual decrease in the thickness of the hair on the upper part of the head

It affects both men and women in the ageing process. The hairline begins to recede from the forehead in a shape that resembles the letter M.

  • Sudden

Physical or emotional shock may loosen our hair. Possibly tufts of hair fall out while combing, washing or even when pulling it softly.

  • Throughout the entire body

Some disorders and treatments such as chemotherapy cause the hair to fall out. In general, it grows back again.

  • Circular balding points or patches

Some people present with soft balding points no larger than the size of a coin. This type usually affects only the scalp but on occasions can also appear on the beard or eyebrows. In some cases itching or pain of the skin present before it falls out.

Related: Hair loss can be controlled