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With the majority of men living hectic, stressful lives, it’s no surprise that there has been an ‘explosion’ in anxiety since 2008. Coupled with a tendency for men to close up around discussions of mental health, it can be tough to deal with anxiety and its consequences. Among other symptoms, recent studies have suggested that anxiety and hair loss could be connected. So - can anxiety cause hair loss?
Why does hair loss occur?
Hair loss occurs when the growth cycle of your hair is disrupted. This cycle is extremely delicate and regimented, so when something - whether it be an illness, DHT or stress - warps the cycle, hair loss can get worse. For those with a sensitivity to DHT, hair follicles can get damaged and eventually die off, which is the most common form of hair loss.
How are anxiety and hair loss connected?
While there are still plenty of questions about how anxiety and hair loss are connected, the relationship between the two is quite complex. The good news is that with a reduction in anxiety and the use of hair loss treatments, you have a good chance to drastically reduce the impact of your hair loss. In general, there are three types of anxiety-associated hair loss:
The condition Telogen Effluvium develops when physiologic stressors force hairs that are in the growing stage of the cycle to enter the resting stage. As a result, hair growth can stop for an average of three months and, when the hair growth cycle continues, hair shedding can happen.
Clinically defined as an autoimmune disease, Alopecia Areata can be exaggerated and exacerbated by high levels of stress and anxiety. The disease functions by attacking your hair follicles and causing excessive shedding as a result. While scientists are still conducting research into why this occurs and on the best available treatment, it has been accepted that stress can be common triggers for Alopecia Areata.
Trichotillomania is another condition that can cause hair loss and is actually considered a type of obsessive-compulsive disorder. People with Trichotillomania often experience an overwhelming urge to pull the hair from the head, eyebrows or other areas of their body. This can be a method for some to subconsciously deal with their anxiety, stress or even boredom.
Opening up to others about your stress, anxiety or depression is an essential part of getting back on the right track. Practising mindfulness, getting outdoors and regularly exercising are all important ways to manage your stress levels and improve your mental health. The bonus? The rate of your hair loss could decrease too. If you’re interested in taking more action against your hair loss, take a look through our clinically approved treatment plans and get in touch with us for a free consultation today.