When it comes to hair loss, the signs of it can creep up on us completely unwelcomed. However, it doesn’t just happen overnight. These signs can show themselves well before you can even be classified on the Norwood Scale. Knowing what these signs are early on can help you develop a counterplan to fight off baldness. This is assuming the cause for hair loss is Male Pattern Baldness (Androgenetic Alopecia) and not due to a more serious underlying medical condition. It is always best to check with your doctor or a hair loss specialist to find out what is your root source of hair loss before attempting any plan or procedure. If you are interested in more articles like this, feel free to check out all our other ones here. On to this week’s topic; the following are 5 signs you may be going bald.
1. Changes In Hairline
One of the main early signs of incoming baldness is a change in your hairline. Though it is not a 100% guarantee for baldness, it is still a common sign of it. For the most part, the change in hairline for men is seen in the receding frontal hairline, specifically the corners. The result of this corner recession usually ends up being what is known as a widow’s peak. During the initial phase, your hair will begin to thin at the temples and the front of your hairline. This change in the frontal hairline is a characteristic sign of male baldness. Widow’s peaks can be aggressive, and if yours is very prominent or receding, it could mean future hair loss is looming. Another type of hairline is similar to the V shape, but is more of a half-moon pattern. This half-moon pattern can be seen when the entire front hairline recedes back without a widow’s peak. However, there is also the possibility that it could simply be a maturing hairline and not necessarily due to incoming baldness.
Men may first notice recession at their hairline, whereas women may see it around their temples. If this occurs, your hair in these areas may be much less prominent where the thinning is occurring. This is called Hair Miniaturization. When enough terminal hairs are in a state of miniaturization, there appears to be a visible thinning of the hair in the affected areas. As more hairs in each follicular unit become miniaturized, the process may lead to complete baldness in that area of the scalp.
2. Excessive Hair Loss After Showering or Brushing
The average person sheds about 50 to 100 individual hairs a day. This happens throughout the day, not just when brushing one’s hair. However, if you feel like every time you run your brush through your hair or are noticing a ton of hairs in your hands while shampooing, then this may serve as early signs of hair loss. Another place to look for shedding hair is on the pillow you sleep on. While we sleep, many tend to move a lot throughout the night. Thus, this causes friction between the pillow and scalp which can result in shedding.
It is important to note that temporary hair loss can happen and that shedding a lot of hair for a day or two isn’t necessarily a cause for alarm. Hair loss can occur due to many causes, ranging from high fevers to psychological stress to medication use. This type of hair loss is usually temporary, meaning you’ll notice a larger number of hairs in your hands and on your brush for a week or two. If you notice a large amount of hair loss every day for a long period of time, you should seek out help from your doctor or specialist. After all, it may not take as long as you’d think for a modest amount of daily hair loss to turn into a receding hairline or a visible bald spot on your crown. Which leads us to the next sign…
3. Thinning Of Crown Area
Another common characteristic of Male Pattern Baldness is if you notice thinning in the crown area of your hair. Aside from your frontal hairline and temple regions, the crown area is a main victim of MPB. In many cases this can occur even before thinning hair in front. Not all people go bald from their hairline. Some men experience what’s called diffuse thinning. This is a type of hair loss that either affects the entire scalp or specific areas like the crown. This results in baldness that starts from the back or top, rather than from the hairline. This can be self-diagnosable by simply holding a mirror above your head while looking into another mirror, or even taking a picture of the top of your head. Taking pictures over a course of time will also help determine the rate of hair loss, if there even is any.
4. Your Partings Are Getting Wider
One of the earliest signs of hair loss is a widening of the middle part of your hair. This is more apparent amongst females who may have androgenetic alopecia. At Least 50% of females will deal with this type of hair loss at some point in their lives. In this case, the space between the hairs increases, thus giving the look of a balding line down the middle of the scalp. There is much variation in the diameter and length of hairs – some and thick and long while others are fine and short. This variation in size represents the gradual miniaturization of hair follicles – they become smaller and smaller.
The precise reasons for Female Pattern Hair Loss are not yet fully understood. For women, hair loss is usually not as drastic as it looks like in men. Whereas for men, the possibility of full-on baldness is likely, for women it tends to be more milder and diffused. Psychosocially, however, hair loss tends to cause more stress for women, negatively impacting their self-esteem and self-image. For those concerned about the possibility of their thinning, one way most can tell if it’s occurring or not is by the Ponytail Test. For women, and for those men who love the man bun, if you see the circumference of your hair decrease when pulled back into a ponytail, your hair probably is thinning.
5. Mitigate Self-Inflicted Damage To Your Hair
If you’re one to aggressively blow-dry your hair in the mornings or use a ton of hair products to keep your style in shape no matter what gets thrown at you today, you can bet that great hair won’t come without a cost. Heat damage can make straight hair appear dry and brittle. It can also exaggerate the appearance of split ends and make it harder for your hair to lie flat. This isn’t to say that you should never continue to style your hair. It’s just a good idea to take extra steps to keep your hair healthy despite whatever heat tools and hair products you choose to use. Your hair will thank you.
If you so choose to continue styling your hair using heat and products, there are ways to mitigate the damage you may do to your hair in the long-run. One simple way to safeguard your hair if you tend to use a blow-dryer is to get yourself a good heat protectant. If the name isn’t dead giveaway to its purpose, essentially what it does is add a barrier between your styling tool and your hair, sealing in moisture and fending off frizz. They also work to smooth the cuticle, making your hair look smooth and feel soft. Instead of your hair being suddenly exposed to heat, it will gently heat up. This lowers the damage done to your hair and scalp. Keep in mind that heat protectants only reduce the amount of damage caused by heat styling. At most, they reduce the damage by 50% even with high end heat protectants.
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