How Stress Causes Hair Loss and What You Can Do About It

How Stress Causes Hair Loss and What You Can Do About It

Stress can affect many parts of your life both mentally and physically. While many things affect hair loss like age, gender, and genetics, there are different types of hair loss that are connected with stress. We’re about to get technical but don’t worry, we have advice and tips to leave you with. 

Hair loss connected to stress.

Alopecia areata involves the body’s immune system attacking the hair follicle causing hair loss. With this type of stress-induced hair loss, the hair usually falls out in patches. It’s also retroactive, meaning that this particular hair loss can be from stress from weeks ago. A lot of factors may be contributed to alopecia areata including severe stress. 

 

Telogen effluvium is the more common stress-induced hair loss and the less severe of the two but still significant. With this type of hair loss, the hair stops growing and lies dormant, leaving it to fall out 2-3 months later and then growing back within 6-9 months later.

 

Trichotillomania or hair pulling disorder is the irresistible urge to pull your hair out. The most common sites are the scalp and eyebrows but can be from other parts of the body as well. There are many causes of trichotillomania but is typically associated with a person's way of dealing with stress or anxiety. 

If you’re feeling stressed, your body is too.

While the three above is more on the severe side of the spectrum, experts are seeing more people seek treatment for hair loss and they’re finding extreme stress and anxiety to be the culprit. When you’re feeling stressed your body is too and it’s seen in your cortisol levels. Cortisol is the primary stress hormone. Dermatologist Dr. Jeanine Downie of Image Dermatology explains, “Cortisol is pumped out of your adrenal glands, which sit on top of your kidneys. Once this is in your system, cortisol interacts with your hormones and can cause your hair to go into the resting phase [The phase when hair is most likely to fall out].” 

Managing stress and expectations. 

Both stress and hair loss can be temporary but both require attention and TLC to both your mental and to your scalp. Instead of promising to get rid of stress all together, find ways to manage your cortisol instead. There truly are countless ways to do this like incorporating proper hair care products into your routine, daily supplements, meditation, acupuncture, breathing exercises, yoga, walking, or talking to someone. You have to find what works for you.

Create a healthy routine.

After you’ve concluded your hair loss is stress related and you’re in the process of taking the steps to manage your stress and cortisol levels, it’s time to give love to your scalp. 

Reduce inflammation

Blue Tansy Oil and Copaiba Resin in Daily Elixir help reduce inflammation. This helps prevent hair loss from stress and tension on fragile follicles.

 

Increase blood flow

"Studies have shown that scalp massage can increase hair thickness by stretching the living hair follicle cells and stimulating them to produce thicker, individual hairs." Dr. Jessica Wu, Los Angeles–based dermatologist. Our Scalp Clearing Massager makes it easier than ever.

 

Gently unclog hair follicles

Think of clogger hair follicles like clogged pores. Unaddressed buildup can damage the hair and cause it to fall out. Our H.A.P.I. Shampoo is formulated with clean ingredients that gently cleanse your scalp and hair.

 

Repair 

Curl hair is already more fragile and prone to easy breakage compared to non-curly hair. Protect the growth you have now with a vegan protein formula that imparts strength to your hair. Our Plant Power Mask does this while also addressing scalp health with Blue Tansy Oil.

If you experience patches of hair fall out, please talk to your doctor. It could be stress related but there also can be underlying health issues that require treatment. 

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Hannah Diop, founder + CEO of Sienna Naturals

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