Hair loss due to stress - here is how you can help your hair
Trying to juggle work, life, and family - stress is a constant companion for many people. Constant stress can have a negative effect on our body - including on our scalp and hair. It is well known that stress can lead to grey hair. But stress can also negatively affect hair growth and trigger hair loss.
In this article you will learn everything about the connection between hair loss and stress and how you can counteract stress-related hair loss.
What happens in the body during stress?
Stress is a feeling that we have all experienced at one time or another, for example when we face challenges or feel overwhelmed. That stressed feeling is caused by a real physical reaction within our body.
Evolutionarily, stress is a mechanism that has ensured the survival of mankind. In dangerous situations, like coming across a tiger in the wild, the body could quickly switch to fight or flight by releasing cortisol, adrenaline and noradrenaline through the adrenal glands.
In our modern times, however, we rarely experience situations from which we need to suddenly flee or fight and then return to a stress-free state. Instead, the stress hormones are released over a longer period. It is when the stress becomes chronic, experienced consistently over a long period that it becomes bad for our body.
During periods of stress, the body is designed to focus on fight or flight. All other functions that are not essential for survival, are reduced to the absolute minimum. This ranges from digestion to the regeneration of your hair and skin among other functions. The initial trigger comes from the messenger substance CRH (corticotropin-releasing hormone), which causes an increased release of cortisol.
Why and How does stress promote hair loss?
If you are chronically stressed this process is never switched off, of deproritising ‘non-essential functions’. Scientists have observed that these stress hormones lead to a lack of energy, which has a negative effect on hair growth which your body views as a ‘non-essential function’.
The consequences are:
- The growth phase of the hair root is significantly shortened.
- The proportion of hair in the so-called resting phase (telogen phase) increases.
- Hair loss is accelerated
If, on top of that, the persistent stress affects the hair roots, the hair becomes thinner and results in premature hair loss, this situation triggers additional stress for many of those affected. It is therefore important to combat the causes of stress and promote hair growth.
Common causes of stress
People are most often stressed by:
- High expectations of themselves
- Family commitments or expectations
The perception of stress is very subjective - what stresses one person may be completely irrelevant to another. It is therefore important to identify one's personal stress triggers in order to be able to actively counteract them.
Combat stress and promote hair growth
The best way to combat stress-related hair loss is to minimise stress. Either the stress triggers can be avoided - which may not be easy, especially with external stress factors such as work - or a counterbalance to the stressors must be found.
Practicing mindfulness activities to help relax or seeking comfort and support from family and friends can help reduce cortisol or stress in the body. It is important to try and balance work and life, to find a way to help reduce stress and the negative impacts it can have on the body.
The right hair care can also help to counter stress-related hair loss.
Caffeine Liquid Forte against hair loss
The Alpecin team knows chronic stress is a well-known problem that is frequently associated with hair loss. Daily application with the Alpecin Caffeine Liquid Forte effectively promotes hair growth and additionally prolongs the growth phases of the hair ( which can be shortened by stress). This supplies the hair roots with optimal energy to grow.