Do allergies and hair loss have a connection?
Autoimmune diseases and inflammatory conditions are more common than you might think. They can affect any organ in the body, including the skin. One of the most visible effects of these diseases is changes in hair quality and quantity.
What are the common causes of hair loss?
Alopecia or hair loss is a common complaint faced by individuals of all ages around the globe. Hair loss can result from multiple pathological conditions and some medical treatments. The most common causes of hair loss include genetics, autoimmune, stress-induced, thyroid disease, anemia, protein deficiency, chemotherapy, and low
vitamin levels, etc.
What is alopecia areata (AA)?
A particular subset of alopecia with an autoimmune background is known as alopecia areata. Here, hair loss is usually not limited to the scalp but may also affect the eyebrows, facial hair, or other hairy body parts. The pattern of hair loss also varies from patchy to generalized.
While we now know that autoimmunity can cause alopecia, it’s also thought to have many other contributing factors.
Genetics and environmental elements are crucial in how quickly the illness progresses and whether its effects will become more severe.
It is also associated with diseases of the endocrine glands, stressful conditions and emotional shock, vitiligo and atopic dermatitis, and reflex irritation from focal lesions such as dental abscesses.
Is there a connection between allergies and hair loss?
Recent studies have shown a possible association between allergic diseases and alopecia areata. Repeated observations suggest that specific allergies – such as atopic rhinitis, asthma, or dermatitis – may correspond with the severity and onset of hair loss in alopecia areata. These findings may be due to diseases with a similar genetic background associated with an abnormal immune response.
Literature also shows that alopecia areata is associated with atopy in 10–22% of patients, two times more prevalent in the general population. On the other hand, a higher risk of allergic diseases is also reported in patients with alopecia areata, such as atopic eczema, hay fever, asthma, rhinitis, etc., compared to the general population.
A study on the Chinese population concluded that allergy to dust mites could also contribute to the early onset and severity of alopecia areata by affecting the immune system.
Another analytical study conducted in Taxes in 2009 revealed that a history of atopy and autoimmune disease was associated with an increased risk of alopecia areata. These results were consistent for both A and the severe subtype of AA (i.e., alopecia totalis and alopecia Universalis) and the localized subtype (i.e., AA persistent).
Will my hair grow back after allergies?
Allergies can cause a variety of reactions, including hair loss. Your hair can grow back after an allergic reaction, but it may take some time. How long it takes for your hair to grow back depends on the severity of the allergic reaction and how long you were exposed to the allergen.
These include topical medications, oral medications, and light therapies. It is also essential to ensure you get enough nutrients in your diet to support healthy hair growth. With proper treatment and avoidance of allergens, your hair should eventually grow back.
What underlying conditions make your hair fall out?
A variety of underlying conditions can cause hair loss. These conditions can range from medical issues such as hormonal imbalances, autoimmune diseases, thyroid problems, and nutritional deficiencies to lifestyle factors such as stress, over-styling, and using harsh hair products.
Hormonal imbalances often cause hair loss due to the body producing too much or too little certain hormones.
Nutritional deficiencies, such as those caused by inadequate intake of protein or iron, can also contribute to hair loss.
Stress is another major factor that can lead to hair loss due to increased cortisol levels in the body.
Over-styling and harsh styling products can damage the scalp and follicles, leading to breakage and thinning hair. All of these underlying conditions can cause varying degrees of hair loss if left untreated.
Can seasonal allergies cause alopecia?
Seasonal allergies can also cause inflammation of the scalp, which can lead to hair loss. In addition, seasonal allergies can cause itching and irritation of the scalp, leading to excessive scratching, which can further damage the hair follicles and lead to alopecia.
Furthermore, seasonal allergies can weaken the immune system, making it more susceptible to infection and inflammation of the scalp and hair follicles. If left untreated, this could result in permanent hair loss. Therefore, it is essential for those who suffer from seasonal allergies to take steps to prevent their symptoms from worsening and potentially leading to alopecia.
Is hair loss due to allergy reversible?
Hair loss due to allergy is common and can be caused by many different allergens, such as pollen, dust mites, pet dander, and certain foods.
Fortunately, hair loss due to an allergic reaction is usually reversible once the allergen is identified and removed from the individual’s environment. It is essential to seek medical advice if you are experiencing hair loss due to an allergy because identifying the allergen can be difficult.
A doctor may recommend allergy testing or a skin prick test to determine what is causing the allergic reaction. Once the allergen has been identified, it should be avoided for the hair loss to stop and for new hair growth to begin.
In some cases, medication may also be prescribed to reduce allergic reaction symptoms. With proper diagnosis and treatment, most people with hair loss due to an allergic reaction can expect their hair to grow back within a few months.
What am I lacking if my hair keeps falling out?
If your hair keeps falling out, You may lack essential nutrients in your diet. These could include proteins, vitamins, and minerals necessary for healthy hair growth.
Additionally, it could be a sign of an underlying medical condition like alopecia or thyroid disease. Stress can also cause hair loss, so it’s essential to manage stress levels by engaging in activities that help to relax and destress.
Finally, specific medical treatments or medications could have side effects such as hair loss, so it is essential to talk to a trichologist about any potential side effects of treatments or medicines before taking them.
For most, You have to get bloodwork to check your nutrient levels to see if it is sufficient.
Taking all these steps can help identify what you are lacking if your hair keeps falling out and ensure that your taking the necessary steps to improve the health of your hair.
Can Food Allergies Cause Hair Loss?
Furthermore, food allergies can trigger inflammation in the body, decreasing the nutrients and oxygen needed for healthy hair growth.
Symptoms of food allergies related to hair loss include scaly skin on the scalp, itchy scalp, and dandruff-like flakes.
If you suspect a food allergy causes hair loss, it is wise to consult a trichologist for proper diagnosis and treatment. Your doctor may recommend an elimination diet or tests to determine which allergens are causing your symptoms.
What About Scalp Allergies Caused by Product Ingredient Sensitivity?
Scalp allergies can be very uncomfortable and cause a range of symptoms. Allergies caused by product ingredient sensitivity are usually seasonal and can affect the scalp and hair in various ways.
Allergic dermatitis is an inflammation or rash on the scalp due to an allergen, which can cause itchiness, redness, and even hair loss. As with any other form of allergies, the best way to treat them is to identify the source of the allergen and avoid it.
Using natural shampoo hair conditioners with fewer allergens is also essential because they may lessen symptoms like irritation or dryness. Switching to natural products instead of products containing sodium lauryl sulfate, which over time, melts the protein in your hair.
If you’re concerned about hair loss, don’t hesitate to contact a trichologist or other medical professional for help. And if you want to explore the possibility that allergies and autoimmune conditions might play a role in your hair loss, take our quiz. With just a few questions, we can provide some insights that might help you identify the root cause of your problem and find a solution.
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