They say that when you find yourself in a hole, stop digging. Unfortunately, many people who start to experience hair loss keep on digging and needlessly make matters worse for themselves. While many of the reasons behind hair thinning and baldness are out of our hands – genetics, primarily – plenty of styling, lifestyle, and diet choices can have a significant impact on the health, strength, and resilience of our hair. By doing the right things and not doing the wrong things, you can make great strides in slowing or preventing further hair loss.
If you notice more hair in your sink or shower and start seeing thinning areas on your scalp, keep these hair loss do’s and don’ts in mind:
Hair Loss Do’s
- DO eat healthy. As with other aspects of health, the health of our hair relies on eating the right foods in the right amounts to ensure we get the nutrients we need. A diet that includes a healthy amount of protein from various sources can be key to growing and healthy hair. Few foods are as rich in protein as nuts and legumes. Nuts also contain a variety of vitamins, minerals, and healthy fats. Try to make nuts like almonds, walnuts, and cashews a regular part of your diet. Additionally, a lack of iron can contribute to hair loss. Iron-rich foods such as spinach, kale, broccoli, and other leafy greens can increase your iron intake and help feed your hair.
- DO get enough sleep. Sufficient sleep is an indispensable part of overall health, as we expend tremendous amounts of energy every day and need the time to recharge so our bodies can function as they are supposed to. A lack of sleep keeps our bodies from repairing and regenerating hair follicles, causing hair to stop growing, weaken, and eventually fall out more than it otherwise would. Even hair that doesn’t fall out will suffer noticeably, losing shine and volume.
- DO manage your stress. Overproduction of stress hormones contributes to adrenal fatigue, which happens when the body produces too much cortisol. In turn, this excessive production leads to a corresponding underproduction of hormones like aldosterone and androgens. Since these hormones are needed for healthy hair growth, an insufficient supply will cause thinning or balding hair. Find ways to alleviate day-to-day stress that work for you.
- DO stay hydrated. Just as a plant won’t grow and will ultimately die without water, your hair needs to stay hydrated to stay healthy. Hair is one of the first parts of your body to show the effects of water, vitamin, and mineral deficiency. Make an effort to push fluids – at least 64 ounces of water per day.
Hair Loss Don’ts
- DON’T wear destructive hairstyles. Some hair loss problems are caused by the way we treat and style our hair. Tight ponytails, pigtails, or braids can lead to a condition called traction alopecia. Constant and severe tension on hair follicles because of such hairstyles will damage and weaken those follicles and eventually kill them, causing them to fall out. Avoid these styling habits, and also avoid hairstyles that require hair to be tightly wound for a prolonged period or hairpieces and weaves that must be affixed or clipped to the hair.
- DON’T smoke. Smoking limits the flow of blood in your body and reduces the amount of essential nutrients that make their way to your hair follicles. Without an adequate supply of those nutrients, your follicles will grow weak instead of just growing, and will ultimately fall out.
- DON’T let styling products build up. Despite concern to the contrary, there is little evidence that everyday styling products like mousse, gels, or hairspray have any adverse effect on our follicles if used correctly. The key is ensuring that you wash your hair regularly to prevent such products from contributing to any long-term buildup of sebum-based plaque. When combined with pollutants, oils, and sweat, this buildup could lead to a condition called scalp folliculitis which can make it impossible for hair follicles to support a normal hair growth cycle.
Schedule Your Appointment for a Hair Loss Evaluation Today
At the Miami Hair & Skin Institute, our skilled physicians diagnose and treat hair loss cases that can’t be reversed at home or through changes in lifestyle or diet. Through advanced hair transplant techniques and alternative non-invasive treatments, we can help patients who are ready to take action and restore their hair and self-confidence.
To receive a personalized evaluation and treatment plan, contact us online or call or office directly at 305-925-0222.