What Influences The Health of Your Hair?
There are a variety of factors that can impact the health of your hair. While you can’t control hair loss-inducing factors, like age or genetics, there are several factors that you can regulate (we’ll get into those in a moment).
Sometimes the exact reason isn’t clear-cut, so it’s important to consult your doctor to determine why you may be experiencing hair loss. In the meantime, you can take matters into your own hands by making minor lifestyle adjustments that help promote the growth of thicker, healthier strands.
Here are four factors that may be impacting your hair health and how you can effectively prevent them from damaging your tresses:
- Stress Levels
High levels of stress may lead to telogen effluvium, which is a temporary condition that disrupts the hair cycle and leads to noticeable thinning. Excess stress can also result in a mental disorder that causes you to physically pull out your strands, referred to as trichotillomania. Hair pulling is a coping mechanism for dealing with feelings of frustration, tension, or loneliness.
When you’re stressed, you may also start to skip essential parts of your daily routine, such as eating meals and taking care of your hygiene. While this may seem more convenient at the moment, these behaviors can take a toll on your hair and, even worse, your overall well-being.
Stress-related hair loss is typically temporary and may be reversed once you’re able to gain control over your emotions. Implementing stress management techniques, such as socializing with others, keeping a stress journal, and exercising, may help you confront your emotions in a healthier, more productive way. During periods of stress, it’s especially important to take care of yourself and keep a daily routine to avoid further health complications.
- Dieting Habits
A balanced diet is not only good for your overall health but also the health of your hair. Your hair needs proper nourishment to grow, so it’s important to ensure your diet includes adequate amounts of nutrients for hair growth. Some of these nutrients include vitamin A, B-vitamins, vitamin C, biotin, iron, protein, and zinc.
Luckily, your diet is one factor you can control. Maintaining a balanced diet will help ensure that malnutrition isn’t causing or worsening unhealthy hair. For inspiration, try some of these superfoods every woman needs, which are rich in essential vitamins for healthier hair growth. You should also consider eating more salmon, lean poultry, eggs, and spinach, as these all provide fortifying benefits to your locks, as well.
It’s also best to shy away from foods that may lead to hair thinning, such as processed snacks, bread, and sugary candy, whenever possible. This is especially important if you’re already experiencing hair loss. If you’re worried you’re not getting the nutrients your hair needs, talk to your doctor about healthy dieting tips, and consider taking hair growth vitamins that contain biotin to support healthy growth.
- Hair Treatment
It’s important to treat your hair with care, especially if you’re experiencing hair thinning or shedding. Excess pulling and heat can damage the integrity of your hair, which is why you should treat your mane with TLC.
To keep your hair healthy and in its place, avoid hairstyles that pull your hair, such as braids, buns, and any other tightly pulled back up-do. Instead, opt for looser styles and change them frequently to give your scalp and hair time to recover. If you’re already experiencing signs of hair thinning, you should also consider using topical products that target hair loss. Look for ingredients like biotin, amino acids, and minoxidil, which work to strengthen, moisturize, and improve the health of your hair.
It’s also important to note that hair loss doesn’t always start at the root. Applying excess heat to your hair may cause damage and breakage. If you use styling tools, be sure to use a lower heat setting and apply thermal protection to your hair to prevent further damage.
- Hormone Imbalances
Throughout your life, you undergo hormonal changes that can take a toll on your hair. That’s why hair thinning and shedding are often noticeable in women with thyroid imbalances, new mothers, and menopausal women as they experience fluctuations in their estrogen levels.
As your body adjusts to these changes over time, your hormone levels should return to normal, so treatment isn’t always necessary. However, you should visit your doctor if conditions don’t improve within the first few months. If you suspect hormones may be responsible for your hair loss, ask your doctor about hormone testing. This may help you understand the root cause of your condition so you can determine the best treatment for your needs.
As far as proactive steps you can take, getting a good night’s sleep is essential to regulating hormone levels. Effectively managing stress and maintaining a balanced diet are also simple ways you can balance your hormone levels naturally (see previous sections for tips!).
With these tips, you can keep your locks happy and maintain a healthier head of hair!
This is a guest post contribution by Karlyn Quinn.