Beyond the Surface: 13 Reasons for Hair Loss  

Written by: Fahmida Hoque Rimti
Written by: Fahmida Hoque Rimti
Fahmida is an intern doctor in Bangladesh with eight high-impact publications in Q1 journals on emerging health issues and was awarded the “Inspiring Women Volunteer Award” in 2022 by the UN Bangladesh.
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Hair has always been important in conversations and how we see ourselves, as it reflects our attractiveness and uniqueness. Hair loss can significantly impact a person’s self-esteem and confidence, extending beyond mere concerns about physical appearance.

Alopecia, which means hair loss, is a complex condition influenced by factors like genetics and the environment. Hair loss is not just a cosmetic problem; it shows how genetics, lifestyle, and health are all connected in a complicated way. If you notice your have thinning hair or if they start falling out, you should see a dermatologist right away. They can figure out why you’re losing hair and help you discover effective ways to prevent hair loss or make it grow back.

If you’re unhappy with your hair, you can also consider a hair transplant. Hair transplants in Turkey have proven to be effective and cost way less than in the western countries. Our goal is to help you understand hair loss, boost your confidence, and acknowledge that everyone’s journey to healthier hair is different. So let’s dive into the 13 most common reasons for hair loss.

Different Varieties of Alopecia

Alopecia is the scientific word used to refer to the loss of hair. Androgenic alopecia, alopecia areata, traction alopecia, etc., are different types of hair loss commonly found in men and women. 

Androgenetic alopecia, also known as male and female pattern hair loss, is mostly caused by your genes and hormonal imbalances, especially having too many androgens.

Alopecia areata, an autoimmune condition, arises when the immune system attacks and destroys hair follicles incorrectly. 

Scarring alopecia, a less-publicized but equally important condition, causes inflammation that permanently damages hair follicles. 

Another cause of hair loss is traction alopecia due to continuous hair strain or tight hairstyles. Understanding the different kinds of alopecia is essential for identifying and managing hair loss causes.

Additional Autoimmune Diseases

Medical conditions such as Lupus and Hashimoto’s thyroiditis can also produce alopecia. This type of alopecia may be permanent. Moreover, there may be specific medications associated with these disorders that may hamper new hair growth.

So, it’s important for your doctor to closely watch for any new symptoms or health changes before considering hair restoration treatments.


Reasons for hair loss can also include infections and disorders. A high temperature or a severe infection might cause temporary hair loss. These may encompass fungal skin diseases and bacterial illnesses such as syphilis, both of which can contribute to hair loss or thinning hair.

Addressing the root cause of the disease can promote hair regrowth and mitigate the risk of further hair loss. Therefore, your initial action should be to seek medical assistance for the underlying health issue.

Disruptions in Hormonal Equilibrium

The primary reason for hair loss is an overabundance of androgens and hormonal imbalances. Androgens play a role in female and male pattern baldness. Androgens can weaken hair follicles in female-pattern baldness, resulting in excessive hair shedding. 

Male pattern baldness, however, is associated with an elevation in the androgen hormone known as dihydrotestosterone (DHT). DHT not only attaches to hair follicles and slows hair growth but may also lower a hair’s life span overall.

Thyroid Disorders

Additional hormone-related diseases can also contribute to hair loss. Certain cases may involve the utilization of thyroid hormones. Hair loss can occur due to either hypothyroidism (an underactive thyroid) or hyperthyroidism (an overactive thyroid), as both conditions lead to a hormonal imbalance. 

Thyroid hormones are crucial in controlling various bodily functions, including hair growth. Appropriate treatment for either of these thyroid problems will effectively regulate hormone levels, halt hair loss, and facilitate hair regrowth.


Hair loss in women can occur during pregnancy and childbirth. Postpartum hair loss is a prevalent condition that impacts women around the world who have just delivered a baby. During pregnancy, there is a significant increase in estrogen levels, leading to temporary changes in hair growth cycles. 

It is not unusual for mothers in the postpartum period to observe hair loss or even areas of baldness. Postpartum alopecia often occurs within two to four months following childbirth and can last for up to 18 months. Hair loss associated with postpartum is particularly prominent along the hairline, especially in women with long hair.

As the other parts of your body heal, your hair follicles will also undergo recovery. Although postpartum hair loss cannot be prevented entirely, you can reduce the issue by being gentle with your hair and consistently taking prenatal vitamins.

Specific Pharmaceuticals

Hair loss can also occur due to medications prescribed for common health conditions. This condition is known as “drug-induced alopecia.” Drugs such as anticoagulants, birth control pills, antidepressants, anti-inflammatory medicines, beta-blockers, and calcium channel blockers have the potential to cause hair thinning or baldness. 

Excessive usage of retinoids is another reason for hair loss. Certain chemotherapy medications employed in cancer treatment can induce complete alopecia as they function to eradicate cancerous cells. However, it is essential to consult a doctor before discontinuing prescribed medications. The doctor may want to switch you to an alternative medication to assess if it improves hair loss.

Low Nutrient Intake

Insufficient vitamins and minerals is one of the common cause for hair loss and impaired growth due to their role in the hair growth cycle and cellular regeneration. Low protein, biotin, zinc, and iron intake can cause hair loss. Vitamins, minerals, and protein in a balanced diet help all organs and systems work correctly, ensuring overall health. 

Insufficient nutrition or excessively restricted crash or fad diets can cause nutrient deficiencies and hair loss from thinning to bald patches. Before resorting to over-the-counter supplements to treat suspected deficiencies, it is advisable to consult with your doctor.

Body Injury

Intense physical stress can disrupt the average hair growth and rest cycle, leading hair to fall out in clumps. Any abrupt disturbance to the body, such as a traumatic accident, surgical procedure, thermal injuries, or grave disease, can also cause a shock to the hair follicles.

This form of hair loss is known as telogen effluvium. It has the potential to resolve spontaneously within a period of six to eight months.


A significant level of psychological stress can cause hair loss. Many people suffer from acute telogen effluvium, a condition in which a substantial proportion of hair follicles, up to 70 per cent, enter a resting (telogen) state. 

These statistics contrast the usual range of
10 to 20 per cent of hair follicles that are ordinarily in the telogen state. Typically, this form of hair loss is transient. Effective management of stress can reinstate regular hair growth.


Trichotillomania is a psychiatric disorder characterized by the compulsive need to pull off one’s hair. Obsessive-compulsive disorder and other forms of anxiety disorders may exacerbate this condition. In addition to compulsively pulling one’s hair, there is an experience of relief or pleasure following the hair-pulling behaviour, leading to conspicuous areas of hair loss. 

Trichotillomania may also occur in stressed people with a history of hair-pulling and hair loss. If you suspect this mental health issue, cognitive behavioural therapy and habit reversal training may help establish alternative coping mechanisms.

Air Pollution

Polluted air in urban areas can cause hair damage. Airborne particles and pollution can cause problems with your scalp and make you lose hair. These contaminants have the potential to clog hair follicles, upset the oil balance of the scalp, and cause hair breakage.

Another factor that can cause hair damage is oxidative stress, which specific contaminants can cause. Exposure to air pollution for an extended period may exacerbate hair issues and lead to bald spots.

Hard water

Minerals produced by hard water, such as calcium and magnesium, have the potential to accumulate on the scalp after washing the hair.

An accumulation of minerals can cause the hair to become dry, break, and more challenging to manage. The potential side effects may include increased tangling, dullness, and damage to the hair texture. You can use water softeners to maintain healthy hair.


If you are losing more than 100 hairs daily, knowing why and following effective self-care habits can help you. Reasons for hair loss include genetic predispositions, hormone imbalances, environmental factors, and lifestyle choices. Hair reflects your uniqueness and attractiveness, so it’s important to understand the complexities of hair loss. You should follow stress-reduction methods such as massage, aromatherapy, and relaxation treatment.

To preserve hair health, you should ingest enough calories and eat a diet rich in proteins, healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals. You should avoid tight hairstyles and opt for air-drying, low-heat hair dryers, reduced use of heating tools, and at-home chemical treatments to reduce hair damage and loss. 

These lifestyle changes may stimulate hair growth and reduce hair loss. To properly diagnose and treat hair loss, consult specialists, particularly dermatologists. This holistic strategy increases one’s self-confidence and recognizes the individual path each person takes to achieve healthy and vibrant hair.
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