Monday, June 5, 2017

Underlying Medical Factors of Hair Loss

Aside from genetics, female hair loss can result from a variety of medical reasons.  This blog post
looks at a few of those causes, from the general to the more specific, including postpartum and menopausal hair loss.

Underlying medical factors

In women, many medical conditions may cause hair loss, including the following:

o       A variety of autoimmune diseases
o       Thyroid disease
o       Weight loss caused by severe starvation, dieting or eating
disorders
o       Iron deficiency
o       Medication use (especially oral contraceptives, beta blockers,
Vitamin A, thyroid drugs, tranquilizers and sedatives, Coumadin and prednisone).

As someone experiencing hair loss, I suggest and evaluation and consultation from a trichologist or dermatologist to make sure that no underlying skin conditions are contributing to the hair loss.
They may require a different treatment and may require a biopsy to rule out the presence of certain skin diseases like diffuse alopecia areata.  Your family physician can do required blood tests for the various diseases that may be present.

Blood tests check the following common contributors to female hair loss and can help rule out some identifiable medical conditions:

o       Antinuclear Antibody (ANA): Used to test for lupus or other
autoimmune diseases.  This test is either positive or negative and further testing may be required if the initial screening tests are positive.
o       Iron: Levels serum iron, total iron binding capacity (TIBC),
and ferritin deficiencies in iron.
o       Estradiol: This sex hormone indicates the status of ovarian
output.  This hormone reflects the status of a woman's ability to ovulate.
o       Luteinizing Hormone (LH): This sex hormone indicates the
status of ovarian output a woman may be in her overall aging process.  When she ovulates, this hormone stimulates the production of eggs.
o       Free testosterone: May help the doctor understand a
woman's ability to convert testosterone into estrogen.  Most testosterone is bound to proteins in the blood and the free testosterone is easily converted into estrogen.
o       Sex Hormone Binding Globulin (SHBG):  Level indicates the
status of male hormones.
o       Thyroid-Stimulating Hormone (TSH): Level indicates the
presence of hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism.
o       Total testosterone:  Largely bound to proteins in the blood.

It is imperative to understand that even after a medical condition has been corrected, hair loss may still persist possibly because of a "change" in your genetic makeup that occurred when the medical insult happened.  After the hair loss starts, it may be difficult to remedy this.  The hope is that your hair loss will slow down after the medical condition is treated or cured and any deficiency of overall hormone balance is corrected.

Earlier, I mentioned that we would cover the general to the more specific, including postpartum and menopausal hair loss.  Check out the continuation of this article next week.  Until then, have a blessed week!

Wishing You the Best in Health and Life!

Stephanie Anderson
Trichologist/Natural Health Professional 

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Healing Hair, Naturally

This article is not an indictment of the "evils" of chemical hair services.  I provide healthy hair services for my clients with natural (no chemicals) hair as well as those whose tresses are chemically treated.  A healthy head of hair is not just indicative of chemical free tresses.

With that being said, in today's times, it is obvious to me that there is a link between the chemicals used on the hair, the chemicals in foods consumed and hair loss.  It is my opinion the ladies of my generation seem to be caught up in the hustle and bustle of life a little more than women of generations before.  So many of us do not take time to eat the right foods let alone maintain their hair without the use of harsh products, sprays or other chemicals.

There has been a revolution of women returning to natural hair styling.  There are those women who opt to wear braids, thermal straightening, dreadlocks or even committing to the "big chop" and sporting a teeny weeny afro (TWA) and starting their own personal natural hair journey.  Even with this, many are still experiencing hair that is thinning and falling out.

Why?  There is a link between the chemicals in food and the chemicals on hair.  One major reason is that their bodies have been so contaminated with toxins that their organs have been compromised.  Without proper nourishment the organs (specifically kidney, liver and the spleen) are failing to provide sustenance to the body so it can enrich the hair.

It is a little known fact that the requirement for healthy hair means several body functions must be running properly.  The body systems of digestion, absorption, waste and enzyme distribution and usage must work together harmoniously.   The body will suffer from malnutrition, when nutrients are not absorbed through the organs.  Through my Trichology practice I have discovered that statistically a lot of women (in the United States) are experiencing hair loss as a residual effect of malnutrition.  In some other countries the diets of women are more balanced nutritionally.  These diets include fresh fruits, vegetables, grains, seeds and few meat products.  It has been proven that in addition to having beautiful, healthy hair they also suffer from fewer female problems.

It is interesting that rarely these women experience any hair or scalp maladies.  The reason for this is because their organs are being well fed and consequently providing nourishment to the hair.  Many times women from other cultures experience hair loss once they come to the United States.  Why?  Interestingly enough, once they are introduced to the diet of the ordinary US consumer which is packed with all kinds of food additives and chemicals, they will start to exhibit problems with not only their hair but their skin (with acne, blotches and blemishes) and other organs.

Additives in food create toxins in the human body and are a major contributing factor to organ dysfunction.
For so many years we have taken for granted the importance of healthier eating and a low stress lifestyle.  Due to this, we are now seeing the consequences.

I have always said that I am more successful at prescribing topical hair solutions to my customers for their hair problems than convincing them on eating better, supplementation and minimizing stress.  It is important that we all take a step back to examine what we can do for ourselves to make our lives better.

Women need to eat foods that harmonize and nourish their bodies.  Next, installment we will continue this topic by examining the little changes that will mean a lot.

Until then, if you are interested in learning more about healthier living visit Nature's Sunshine page at http://manehealth.mynsp.com


(photo courtesy Pinterest)

Friday, April 7, 2017

WARNING - They're Using What?! (Hair Replacement/Gorilla Glue Rant!)

If you are a licensed professional wanting credibility in the hair loss industry, you need training.
If you are a client needing professionally installed lace wigs, frontals, cranial prosthetics, etc. make sure your technician is licensed AND trained!!!!

They are doing some DANGEROUS stuff out there! Don't get caught up in the new trend. Know what you are using and why!

I recently saw this photo on social media AND yes...I am ranting!
Let's keep the integrity in the beauty industry.
 WARNING: The photo is a little hard to watch
Photo: not mine, I found it on Facebook...

Monday, February 20, 2017

Hair Loss (Part 1)

Losing your hair can be unpleasant and difficult to cope with.  Your best defense on how to deal with these side effects which are causing your hair loss is consulting your medical health team. It may also be difficult to cope with your personal reaction to hair loss. After all, you have lived with your hair for a long time. It is a part of who you are. Now, your hair loss will be a visible sign that something is happening to you. How do you explain it? Do you have to explain it at all? And how will you react to the change in your self -image as a result of hair loss? Dealing with these questions is a challenge to most people. It is a challenge you can now face, and face confidently. For one thing, you know in advance that the hair loss is likely to happen. And you know why. You will not have to explain your hair loss when you plan in advance to do something about it. Take care of this as soon as possible, before the hair loss occurs. Considering hair prostheses or wigs now will allow you to make adjustments to it on your own terms, not when you do not have the choice. It will make the transition easier.

Hair Loss due to Chemotherapy:
Hair loss (alopecia) is a common side effect of chemotherapy, but not all drugs cause hair loss. Your doctor can tell you if hair loss might occur with the drug or drugs you are taking. When hair loss does occur, the hair may become thinner or fall out entirely. Hair loss can occur on all parts of the body, including the head, face, arms and legs, underarms, and pubic area. The natural hair usually grows back after the treatments are over. Some people even start to get their hair back while they are still having treatments. Sometimes, hair may grow back a different color or texture. Hair loss is not always immediate. It may begin several weeks after the first treatment or after a few treatments. Many people say their head becomes sensitive before losing hair. Hair may fall out gradually or in clumps. Any hair that is still growing may become dull and dry.


How can I care for my scalp and hair during chemotherapy?
  • Use a mild shampoo.
  • Use a soft hair brush.
  • Use low heat when drying your hair.
  • Have your hair cut short. A shorter style will make your hair look thicker and fuller. It also will make hair loss easier to manage if it occurs.
  • Use a sun screen, sun block, hat, or scarf to protect your scalp from the sun if you lose hair on your head.
  • Avoid brush rollers to set your hair.
  • Avoid applying dyes, perms, or relaxers to your hair.

Some people who lose all or most of their hair choose to wear turbans, scarves, caps, wigs, or hair pieces. Others leave their head uncovered. Still others switch back and forth, depending on whether they are in public or at home with friends and family members. There are no "right" or "wrong" choices; do whatever feels comfortable for you. If you choose to cover your head, purchase your wig or hairpiece before you lose a lot of hair. That way, you can match your current hair style and color. You may be able to buy a wig or hairpiece at a specialty salon just for cancer patients. You also can buy a wig or hair piece by contacting us, TrinityLacewigs.Com, online at www.trinitylacewigs.com or by phone at 210-858-8554. Take your full lace wig to your hairdresser for styling and cutting to frame your face.



Some health insurance policies cover the cost of a hairpiece needed because of cancer treatment. It is also a tax-deductible expense. Be sure to check your policy and ask your doctor for a "prescription." Please see the Medical and Insurance Claims information within our blog for more information. Losing hair from your head, face, or body can be hard to accept. Feeling angry or depressed is common and perfectly understandable. At the same time, keep in mind that it is a temporary side effect. Talking about your feelings can help. If possible, share your thoughts with someone who has had a similar experience.