Our hair can be affected by stress, diet, styling practices, genetics, hormones and even as a side effect of covid.
The impact of this can be incredibly distressing, says Dr. Munir Somji, hair restoration surgeon and founder of DrMediSpa. He believes supplements can play a significant role when it comes to hair heath, but that it’s important to understand your hair cycle and what may be causing your hair woes in the first place.
How does the hair growth cycle work?
“There are four main stages of our hair growth cycle. The anagen phase is the active growth phase of your hair, and sees hair grow around half an inch a month for anywhere between three to five years,” explains Somji.
“Following this phase is the catagen phase, a short transitional phase of around 10 days where our hair is cut off from the blood supply and the cells that produce new hair. Then the telogen phase begins, which is a three-month resting phase where our hair remains in place but is no longer growing. And finally, the two-to-five-month exogen phase where hair is released from their follicles and falls out. Then the process starts again.”
It’s normal to shed around 50-100 strands of hair a day, but anything more than that could indicate that there’s another factor involved. “There’s telogen effluvium, a common cause of temporary hair loss that sees shedding ramp up to around three times the normal rate. This generally occurs a few months after a traumatic event like an illness or operation, a period of intense stress, extreme dieting, or childbirth. While with hair thinning or balding thanks to female and male pattern baldness, we see hair become finer and finer with every hair cycle, and this can be genetic, or triggered by hormonal imbalances,” Somji details.