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What Causes Beard Hair Loss? (Alopecia Barbae)

While it is rather uncommon relative to scalp hair loss, beard hair loss (alopecia barbae) is something that many people suffer from. Similar to hair loss of the scalp (alopecia areata), beard hair loss can leave your facial hair looking patchy or incomplete. While the causes can be different for each person, we’ll go over how to catch it early on and what you can do to best treat it.


Understanding Alopecia Areata


To best understand beard hair loss, we have to go over what alopecia areata is and its causes. Alopecia Areata is characterized as an autoimmune disease in which one’s body attacks its own hair follicles, as if they are foreign dangers to the body. This effect results in temporary hair loss which can become permanently damaged if not properly addressed.


According to the American Academy of Dermatology Association, Alopecia Areata can occur in many ways, with the hair loss being patchy in one location or widespread. 


While Alopecia Areata is not contagious, it can occur during a person’s later teenage years and be a main cause of early hair loss. Moreover, it can occur once or multiple times throughout a person’s life. This type of hair loss is not limited to just the scalp, but can also occur in other areas of the body, hence why alopecia barbae is considered a type of alopecia areata.


What Is Alopecia Barbae?


Alopecia Barbae is a particular type of localized hair loss due to alopecia areata affecting just your beard. It is caused by an autoimmune process in the body. 


There are certain health conditions that can make one more prone to having alopecia barbae. Some of these include hay fever to vitiligo, thyroid diseases to atopic dermatitis, asthma and even Down Syndrome are at a higher risk of developing alopecia areata and, by extension, alopecia barbae. 


How Can I Treat Alopecia Barbae?


Currently, there are no FDA-approved treatment options for Alopecia Barbae. However, not all hope is lost…There are still treatment options available for the symptoms. One of the most popular routes include the use of Minoxidil.


Minoxidil (also sold under the brand name Rogaine® and Theroxidil®) is a topical solution commonly used as a treatment for hair loss.


It’s not FDA-approved for alopecia barbae, but has shown to be beneficial in some patients. 

It is best to consult your doctor or a hair loss expert before starting any medication. If you have any questions or concerns regarding your hair loss situation, feel free to contact us at 954-945-2909 to schedule a free consultation




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