According to the AAA (American Academy for Dermatology), Alopecia (al-oh-PEE-shah) is a medical condition in which the hair falls out. Alopecia affects people differently.
Hair loss can be caused by a number of things including, heredity; stress; medications; diet, combing/brushing the hair too vigorously; and more.
There are a few types of Alopecia:
- Alopecia Totalis
- Alopecia Areata
- Postpartum Alopecia
- Androgenic Alopecia
- Traction Alopecia
You can also watch the YouTube video for hair thinning here.
Note: Keep in mind, you should be losing 60-100 strands of hair a day (give or take). If you begin to notice more, take a picture of the hair loss and track it for a few weeks. After a few weeks, start to compare photos of the hair you are losing and if you're noticing more and more, make an appointment with your dermatologist.
What is Traction Alopecia?
Traction Alopecia comes from constant pulling, tugging, yanking, etc to the hair. This constant strain to the hair follicles causes them to become weak, thin and malnourished.
When the scalp is consistently not allowed to have proper circulation and provide nourishment to the follicle, it causes the hair to thin and fall out.
How do I get Alopecia or Traction Alopecia?
Well, one thing is for sure, Alopecia is not contagious! People that experience traction alopecia frequently wear hairstyles like ponytails; braids (on the scalp and off the scalp); weaves (sew-ins, wigs, clip-ins, etc); they may wear hats and headbands often; bobby pins; hair clips; and more!
How do I prevent Traction Alopecia?
Traction Alopecia can be prevented by giving the hair a break in between hairstyles that cause pulling, tugging or tension.
Take ponytails out at night or as soon as you get home and don't sleep in clip-ins. Hair is meant to move and when it cannot move because of the ponytail holder/clip it starts to weaken the hair strand and can cause the hair to break.
Tie your hair up with a silk scarf at night or sleep on a silk pillowcase. If you are wearing a hairstyle such as a sew-in, braids, or wig that prevents you from being able to comb your hair or take it down every night, be sure to give your hair a "tension-free" 2 weeks in between hairstyles to breathe, move and recover!
Be sure to get a good haircare routine that includes,
- Consistent cleansing (cleansing of the hair depends on your scalp and hair type but NEVER every day and no less than every 2 weeks);
- Deep conditioning treatments;
- Regular hair trims;
- Professional brand of shampoos and conditioners;
- Drinking the proper amount of water;
- Eating healthy;
- A good/healthy sleep schedule;
- A healthy balance of stress (I know easier said than done)