Everything you need to know about seasonal hair loss
If you’re one of the many women (and sometimes men) that experiences considerable hair loss in Autumn, especially October and November, you aren’t imagining it. Researchers in Sweden have discovered that seasonal hair loss actually exists.
Shedding between 50 and 100 hairs each day is normal and the average strand of hair has a life cycle of between 2 and 6 years, during which normal growth occurs. At any one time, 90 percent of the hair is in the growth or anagen phase and around 10 percent of your hair can be in its ‘resting’ or telogen phase, where the hair follicle rests and the hair falls out.
What the research says
The Swedish research suggests that women experience higher rates of telogen during the summer, especially in July, and as a result, this hair falls out about 100 days later in the Autumn. A study of 800 women found that a higher than normal proportion of hair follicles entered the telogen phase in July and released the hair strands 100 days later, so it appears that seasonal hair loss is more common and noticeable in women.
At this time, hair can fall out up to 4 times faster than normal. It’s not known exactly why this happens, but there are some theories. Stress caused by the summer heat is one theory (pretty relevant at the moment!). Researchers think that our hair grows more in the summer to protect the scalp from the sun’s UV rays, and when they cooler weather comes, it’s no longer needed so it sheds.
Is your hair loss seasonal or is it something more serious?
So some seasonal hair loss is possible, but sometimes this is not hugely noticeable and regrowth does occur. When the hair grows back as soon as it sheds, hair loss won’t be too obvious. But if you’re losing more than the usual 50-100 hairs per day and your hair growth has slowed, it might be a sign of something a bit more serious. If your hair loss is excessive, you might notice that it sheds in a pattern, such as at the temples or at the crown. Your parting might look wider and if you wear a ponytail, it will feel thinner.
If you’re noticing hair loss all year round, and it’s shedding in patches in specific places you should speak to your doctor and a trichologist so they can investigate and treat the cause of your hair loss.
Are you worried about hair loss?
Being concerned about hair loss is not about being vain. Losing your hair can be a sign that you have an underlying health condition, it might be a side effect of medication, or it can be a reaction to stress, and whatever the cause, it can be very emotionally distressing.
If you are suffering from hair loss and the cause has been diagnosed by a trichologist, come and talk to us to find out how we can help.
We’ll discuss your hair loss and your options in a compassionate and understanding environment where your privacy is assured.
Contact us to book a consultation.