8 Things Your Hair Says About Your Health

Mature woman looking away day dreaming

When it comes to our hair, most of us worry most about what to do with it: how short to cut it, how to style it, whether to color it once it begins to go gray. But experts say that our hair says a lot more about us than how closely we follow the latest styles. In fact, the health of our hair and scalp can be a major tip-off to a wide variety of health conditions.

"We used to think hair was just dead protein, but now we understand that a whole host of internal conditions affect the health of our hair," says dermatologist Victoria Barbosa, MD, who runs Millennium Park Dermatology in Chicago. "Our hair responds to stress, both the physical stressors of disease and underlying health issues, and psychological stress." Here, eight red flags that tell you it's time to pay more attention to the health of your hair -- and to your overall health in general.

Red flag #1: Dry, limp, thin-feeling hair

What it means: Many factors can lead to over-dry hair, including hair dyes, hair blowers, and swimming in chlorinated water. But a significant change in texture that leaves hair feeling finer, with less body, can be an indicator of an underactive thyroid, known as hypothyroidism. Some people conclude that their hair is thinning because it feels as if there's less of it, but the thinning is due more to the texture of the hair itself becoming finer and weaker than to individual hairs falling out (though that happens too).

More clues: Other signs of hypothyroidism include fatigue, weight gain, slow heart rate, and feeling cold all the time, says Raphael Darvish, a dermatologist in Brentwood, California. In some cases, the eyebrows also thin and fall out. A telltale sign: when the outermost third of the eyebrow thins or disappears.

What to do: Report your concerns to your doctor and ask him or her to check your levels of thyroid hormone. The most common blood tests measure the levels of thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) and T4. It's also important to keep a list of your symptoms -- all of them.

"A doctor's visit is best to work up this problem; he or she may choose to do a thyroid ultrasound and a blood test in addition to an examination," says Darvish.

Red flag #2: Scaly or crusty patches on the scalp, often starting at the hairline

What it means: When a thick crust forms on the scalp, this usually indicates psoriasis, which can be distinguished from other dandruff-like skin conditions by the presence of a thickening, scab-like surface, says Lawrence Greene, MD, a spokesperson for the National Psoriasis Foundation. Psoriasis is the most common of all the autoimmune diseases and occurs when the skin goes into overdrive, sending out faulty signals that speed up the turnover and growth of skin cells.

More clues: Psoriasis, which affects nearly 7.5 million Americans, often occurs in concert with other autoimmune diseases such as Crohn's disease, lupus, and rheumatoid arthritis. If you have another autoimmune disorder, it's that much more likely you'll develop psoriasis. In turn, the discovery that you have psoriasis should put you on the alert for more serious conditions. Up to 30 percent of people with psoriasis develop a condition called psoriatic arthritis, which causes painful swelling of the joints.

What to do: There's a long list of ingredients that help relieve psoriasis, and treatment is often a process of trial and error. Topical treatments include shampoos containing coal tar or salicylic acid, and creams or ointments containing zinc and aloe vera. Hydrocortisone cream works to relieve inflammation. Prescription creams include vitamin D, vitamin A, and anthralin. Many patients also have great success treating the scalp with UV light therapy, and systemic medications such as cyclosporine work better for some people than topical medications.

It's a good idea to see a dermatologist for help sorting out the various treatments, rather than trying to do it on your own. One thing to keep in mind: Psoriasis puts you at increased risk of diabetes, heart disease, hypertension, certain types of cancer, metabolic syndrome, obesity, and depression. So if your psoriasis becomes severe, bring it to your doctor's attention as part of a discussion of your overall health.

Thinning hair and hair loss

Red flag #3: Thinning hair over the whole head

What it means: It's normal to shed approximately 100 to 150 hairs a day, the result of the body's natural turnover. It's when you notice considerably more hairs in your brush or on the towel after you shampoo -- or when hair appears to be coming out in clumps -- that it's time for concern. One common cause: a sudden psychological or physical stressor, such as a divorce or job loss. Another: having a high fever from the flu or an infection. Diabetes can also cause hair to thin or start to fall out suddenly; some diabetes experts say sudden hair thinning or hair loss should be considered an early warning sign that diabetes is affecting hormone levels.

A number of medications also cause hair loss as a side effect. These include birth control pills, along with lithium and Depakote, two of the most common treatments for bipolar disorder. All tricyclic antidepressants, some SSRIs such as Prozac, and levothyroid -- used to treat hypothyroidism -- can cause thinning hair. Hormonal changes can also cause hair to thin, which is why both pregnancy and perimenopause are well known for causing hair to fall out, while polycystic ovary syndrome can cause both hair loss and overgrowth of hair, depending on how the hormones go out of balance. Thyroid disease, especially hypothyroidism, is one of the most common causes of hair loss.

More clues: Check for tiny white bumps at the roots of the hair; their presence suggests that this is temporary hair loss rather than male/female pattern baldness, says Chicago dermatologist Victoria Barbosa. Any medication that interferes with hormones can cause this type of hair loss; the list includes birth control pills, Accutane for acne, and prednisone and anabolic steroids. Physical stressors that can lead to temporary hair loss include iron deficiency anemia and protein deficiency; these are particularly common in those who've suffered from eating disorders.

What to do: If you have what experts call temporary hair loss -- to distinguish from hereditary hair loss, which is likely to be permanent -- you'll need to discontinue the medication or treat the underlying condition that's causing the problem. It can also help to take supplemental biotin, which has been shown to strengthen and thicken hair and fingernails, says Barbosa.

And while vitamin D deficiency hasn't been pinpointed as a cause of hair loss, research has demonstrated that taking vitamin D helps grow the hair back. "We don't know how vitamin D contributes to hair loss, but we do know the hair follicles need good levels of vitamin D to recover," Barbosa says. Recommended dose: 2000 IUs of vitamin D3 daily. In addition, talk to your doctor about getting your blood levels of iron checked for anemia, and take iron if needed.

Red flag #4: Overall hair loss that appears permanent, often following traditional pattern baldness

What it means: Both women and men are subject to what's formally known as androgenetic and androgenic alopecia. It's usually caused by a change in the pattern of the sex hormones, but diseases and other underlying conditions can cause this type of hair loss by affecting the hormones. In women, a derivative of testosterone is often the culprit, shrinking and eventually killing off hair follicles. Traditionally known as "male pattern baldness," this type of hair loss is often hereditary and is typically permanent if not treated with medication, says Larry Shapiro, a dermatologist and hair surgeon in Palm Beach, Florida.

Men's hair loss nearly always follows a pattern of thinning along the hairline, at the temples, and in the back of the scalp. Some women's hair loss also follows this pattern, but more typically women experience thinning over the entire head.

Diabetes also can cause or contribute to hair loss. Over time, diabetes often leads to circulatory problems; as a result, the hair follicles don't get adequate nutrients and can't produce new hairs. Hair follicles can eventually die from lack of nutrition, causing permanent hair loss.

More clues: Certain underlying conditions can cause this type of hair loss by altering hormones; these include thyroid disease (both overactive and underactive thyroid) and autoimmune disease, Shapiro says. Many drugs taken long-term to control chronic conditions can have a side effect, in some people, of causing or contributing to hair loss. They include beta blockers such as propranolol and atenolol, anticoagulants like warfarin, and many drugs used to control arthritis, Parkinson's disease, and other conditions.

What to do: If you suspect a medication is causing or exacerbating your hair loss, talk to your doctor about whether an alternative is available that's less likely to have that side effect. (But don't just stop taking your medicine.) Minoxidil, the generic name for the drug marketed as Rogaine, is the primary proven method of treating androgenic hair loss. It works by blocking the action of the hormones at the hair follicle. It's now available over the counter, so you don't have to have a prescription, and it's sold in male and female versions.

Another drug, finasteride, requires a prescription. Some women find that taking estrogen helps with hormonally triggered hair loss.

Dry and patchy hair

Red flag #5: Dry, brittle hair that breaks off easily

What it means: When individual hairs litter your pillow in the morning, this typically indicates breakage rather than hair falling out from the follicle, says Chicago dermatologist Victoria Barbosa. Breakage is most frequently the result of hair becoming over-brittle from chemical processing or dyeing. "Bleaching, straightening, and other chemical processing techniques strip the cuticle to let the chemicals in, which makes the hair shaft more fragile," Barbosa explains.

However, certain health conditions also lead to brittle, fragile hair. Among them: Cushing's syndrome, a disorder of the adrenal glands that causes excess production of the hormone cortisol. A condition called hypoparathyroidism, usually either hereditary or the result of injury to the parathyroid glands during head and neck surgery, can also cause dry, brittle hair. Overly low levels of parathyroid hormone cause blood levels of calcium to fall and phosphorus to rise, leading to fragile dry hair, scaly skin, and more serious symptoms such as muscle cramps and even seizures.

More clues: If the cause of your dry, brittle hair is an underlying health condition, you'll likely notice additional symptoms, such as dry, flaky skin. Overly dry hair also can signify that your diet is lacking in omega-3 fatty acids, which are found in salmon and fish oil, as well as many nuts and seeds, particularly flaxseed.

What to do: No matter what the cause of your dry, brittle hair, minimizing heat and chemical treatment are necessary for it to get healthy again. If an underlying condition is throwing your hormones out of whack and in turn affecting your hair, talk to your doctor. The symptoms of hypoparathyroidism, for example, are often reduced or eliminated with supplemental vitamin D and calcium.

Next, deep condition your hair to restore it to health. Hair oils can help restore flexibility to the hair shaft, Barbosa says; look for products made with natural oils such as coconut and avocado oil, which penetrate the cuticle, rather than synthetic oils made from petrolatum, which merely coat the hair. Take fish oil supplements to renourish your hair. And minimize breakage while you sleep by replacing cotton pillowcases, which tend to catch and pull at hair, with satin pillowcases, which are smoother.

Red Flag #6: Hair falling out in small, circular patches

What it means: The body's immune response turns on the hair follicles themselves, shrinking them and causing hair to fall out entirely in small, typically round patches. This kind of hair loss -- which experts call alopecia areata -- can also occur at the temples or at the part line. Diabetes can trigger the onset of such hair loss in some people. And it can continue to spread; in extreme cases, sufferers lose all their hair or lose hair over their entire body.

More clues: Alopecia areata can also cause the eyebrows or eyelashes to fall out, which in addition to the circular pattern can distinguish it from other types of hair loss. Alopecia areata is an autoimmune condition and has been shown to be more common in families with a tendency toward other autoimmune diseases, such as rheumatoid arthritis, early-onset diabetes, and thyroid disease.

What to do: The treatment most proven to work against alopecia areata is cortisone shots delivered directly into the scalp in the spots where the hair is falling out. "If you don't get steroid injections, the circular patches will get larger and more cosmetically noticeable," says California dermatologist Raphael Darvish.

Oral forms of cortisone and topical cortisone creams are also available, but topical cortisone is less likely to be successful unless it's a mild case. Many doctors will also suggest using minoxidil (brand name Rogaine) to speed the rate of regrowth. Treatment may need to be repeated a number of times over a period of months.

Flaky scalp and gray hair

Red flag #7: Yellowish flakes on the hair and scaly, itchy patches on the scalp

What it means: What most of us grew up calling dandruff is now understood to be a complicated interaction of health issues that deserve to be taken seriously. Seborrheic dermatitis is a chronic inflammatory condition of the scalp that causes skin to develop scaly patches, often in the areas where the scalp is oiliest. When the flaky skin loosens, it leaves the telltale "dandruff" flakes.

Seborrheic dermatitis coexists in a "chicken-and-egg" relationship with a fungal infection caused by an overgrowth of a yeast that's normally present on our scalps and skin. The yeast organism, Pityrosporum ovale, takes advantage of skin already irritated by dermatitis and inflames it still more. Some experts now believe that the yeast overgrowth may occur first, setting off the inflammatory reaction of the dermatitis, but that hasn't been proven.

More clues: One way to differentiate seborrheic dermatitis from plain dry skin: When skin is dry, you'll typically also see dry, scaly skin between the eyebrows and by the sides of the nose, says California dermatologist Raphael Darvish. Also, seborrheic dermatitis tends to be seasonal, flaring up during the winter and disappearing in the summertime. It may be triggered by stress as well.

What to do: See a dermatologist to make sure it's seborrheic dermatitis. If so, "there are great prescription shampoos and creams that can correct this," says Darvish. The most effective treatment for yeast overgrowth is ketoconazole, a newer drug that works by damaging the fungal cell wall, killing the fungus. It comes in the form of pills, creams, or shampoo under the brand name Nizoral. However, as an oral medication it has many side effects, so if you and your doctor decide on an oral treatment, an alternative antifungal, fluconazole, is preferable.

To calm flare-ups as quickly as possible, Darvish recommends using a prescription steroid cream. However, long-term use of these creams can thin the skin, particularly on the face, Darvish warns, so doctors recommend using them in short-term doses known as "pulse therapy."

To prevent recurrence, it's necessary to get the skin back in balance, and many experts recommend garlic for this purpose. You can either eat lots of fresh garlic, which might annoy those in close proximity to you, or take a garlic supplement.

Red flag #8: Gray hair

What it means: Many people perceive gray hair as a red flag, worrying that it's an indication of stress or trauma. And history abounds with stories like that of Marie Antoinette, whose hair was said to have gone snow white the night before she faced the guillotine.

Experts tend to dismiss such fears and stories, explaining that how our hair goes gray or white is primarily influenced by our genetics. However, in recent years research scientists have reopened the debate. While they can't yet prove or explain it, many researchers now believe that stress may trigger a chain reaction that interferes with how well the hair follicle transmits melanin, the pigment that colors hair. Researchers are looking at the role of free radicals, which are hormones we produce when under stress, and studies seem to show that they can block the signal that tells the hair follicle to absorb the melanin pigment.

Other experts argue that a trauma or stressful event causes the hair to stop growing temporarily and go into a resting phase. Then when the hair follicles "wake up" and begin turning over again, a lot of new hair grows in all at once, making it appear that a great deal of gray has come in all at the same time.

More clues: The schedule and pattern by which you go gray will most likely follow your parents' experience. However, if you suspect stress is graying you prematurely, keep careful track of stressful events. People who experienced a traumatic event that they believe caused them to go gray have reported that their hair eventually returned to its former color.

What to do: If you believe that stress or trauma is causing your hair to go gray, boost your coping strategies by working on your reactions to stressful situations. Yoga and meditation, for example, are effective stress-management tools.

If you see results, you'll know you're on the right track. In the meantime, you might want to talk to your parents about how their hair color changed over time, and learn what you can expect. After all, if Great-Aunt Eliza first developed her dramatic white skunk streak in her mid-30s, that might be something you want prepare yourself for.

7 months ago, said...

Interesting article thank you for the great research. You doing a great job,i like your posts please keep it up. Interesting article thank you for the great research. You doing a great job,i like your posts please keep it up.
 
 Hide

over 1 year ago, said...

Thats what i was searching for.. But i need some info about hairfinity vitamins. can u guide?? http://sideeffectofhairfinity.tumblr.com/ Thats what i was searching for.. But i need some info about hairfinity vitamins. can u guide?? http://sideeffectofhairfinity.tumblr.com/ Hide

almost 2 years ago, said...

"But a significant change in texture that leaves hair feeling finer, with less body, can be an indicator of an underactive thyroid, known as hypothyroidism." I will have to ask my doctor about this. "But a significant change in texture that leaves hair feeling finer, with less body, can be an indicator of an underactive thyroid, known as hypothyroidism." I will have to ask my doctor about this. Hide

almost 2 years ago, said...

Thanks for the response and advice. I will be at this site at least every other day. I do have a few questions about my father getting a feeding tube. He can sometimes eat and drink but a lot of the time he spits up after-mostly clear saliva-like. He has a stricture in his esophagus, and they've been successful with the inflating procedure...See, I want my dad to be able retain as much functionality as he can for as long as he can. But I'm also not going to allow him to suffer. There's more... Show more Thanks for the response and advice. I will be at this site at least every other day. I do have a few questions about my father getting a feeding tube. He can sometimes eat and drink but a lot of the time he spits up after-mostly clear saliva-like. He has a stricture in his esophagus, and they've been successful with the inflating procedure...See, I want my dad to be able retain as much functionality as he can for as long as he can. But I'm also not going to allow him to suffer. There's more to the story, like dad just had a softball-sized malignant tumor removed from his stomach in January. His tests only show a small lesion or growth on one of his kidneys. They said it probably can stay and won't change. Dad's 71, and a beat up 1960's 1%'er. The strongest man I've ever known. I came back to California last November, after almost 20 years just to visit... But when I saw my dad I knew his health had been declining for some time and he acquiesced and let me bring him to the ER. Since then he came home for 7-10 days and wasn't eating, dry heaving...so I called the ambulance. The doctor tried to hard sell me the feeding tube idea but I was adamant, "Only as a last resort...", yeah. They had scheduled the feeding tube insertion for today but cancelled it so they could talk to me in person Monday. I certainly don't want my dad starving or anything. If anyone has any input, I'd appreciate it. I never expected this but knew what I had to do...fly back to Boston, leave behind everything except what would fit in one suitcase and two small carryons, fly back on Christmas Eve, start establishing myself here: new license, change address with dmv, find a PCP, find a place to live...It's been work but it's getting better! And, by the way, I'm looking for de-stressing activities or techniques I can use. I promise I'll at least try something to see if I benefit. I can't relax or be happy I got dad and I a place. I'm always thinking about the next ten thing needing done and I believe I need a spa treatment or summat! I'm in this for the duration and am hyper-ready for the whole thing to slip out of my hands. Afraid. And it sucks! the life right outa me! Replies, comments, or sharing stories with others aside-this is my regular stop...caring.com. And I spread the word! "I'd rather stand alone than fall with the crowd." -R. Halston Hide

almost 2 years ago, said...

I found rubbing pure fresh lemon juice onto scalp (i left it on all night) the most helpful and best of all it has NO TOXIC CHEMICALS. I found rubbing pure fresh lemon juice onto scalp (i left it on all night) the most helpful and best of all it has NO TOXIC CHEMICALS. Hide

almost 2 years ago, said...

Thank you for your positive feedback. We are glad you find our resources helpful. If you would like to share an article, click on the "e-mail" button in the social action bar on the left side of the page. Subscribing to Caring.com's free newsletter is simple. Scroll to the bottom of the page and click on "Free Newsletters" or go to http://www.caring.com/account/subscriptions. If I can further assist you, please let me know. Thank you for your positive feedback. We are glad you find our resources helpful. If you would like to share an article, click on the "e-mail" button in the social action bar on the left side of the page. Subscribing to Caring.com's free newsletter is simple. Scroll to the bottom of the page and click on "Free Newsletters" or go to http://www.caring.com/account/subscriptions. If I can further assist you, please let me know. Hide

almost 2 years ago, said...

I never cease to find something I can use in my own life e-v-e-r-y time I log onto caring. Can I refer someone? Send an invite to receive your newsletter, or summat? Thx! I never cease to find something I can use in my own life e-v-e-r-y time I log onto caring. Can I refer someone? Send an invite to receive your newsletter, or summat? Thx! Hide

almost 2 years ago, said...

I just assume this is a unisex column. Correct? I just assume this is a unisex column. Correct? Hide

almost 2 years ago, said...

Interesting article on reasons for hair loss, thought Brook might want to read it. Interesting article on reasons for hair loss, thought Brook might want to read it. Hide

almost 2 years ago, said...

I wish the article included the topic of thinning hair though what was written was quite helpful. I wish the article included the topic of thinning hair though what was written was quite helpful. Hide

about 2 years ago, said...

My moms hair has been gradually combing out but I never thought anything...but now its combing out so much its alarming...she stopped taking her iron pills when she developed rectal prolapse because we thought it was causing her constipation...and her doctor also said her vitamin D was low...mom is about to have rectal prolapse surgery tomorrow but I need to know what we need to do regarding Her drastic hair loss... Thank you. Alli My moms hair has been gradually combing out but I never thought anything...but now its combing out so much its alarming...she stopped taking her iron pills when she developed rectal prolapse because we thought it was causing her constipation...and her doctor also said her vitamin D was low...mom is about to have rectal prolapse surgery tomorrow but I need to know what we need to do regarding Her drastic hair loss... Thank you. Alli Hide

over 2 years ago, said...

thank u thank u so much ......u just cleared my uncertain doubt about hair loss... its like i started loosing my hairs suddenly ,just like temporary hair loss, and i freaked out completely cause i felt that i am loosing a good volume of my hairs..............please say me how can i get my volume back ? Show more thank u thank u so much ......u just cleared my uncertain doubt about hair loss... its like i started loosing my hairs suddenly ,just like temporary hair loss, and i freaked out completely cause i felt that i am loosing a good volume of my hairs..............please say me how can i get my volume back ? Hide

over 2 years ago, said...

It is very informational. Now I know why my hair isn't totally white like my two sisters. It is very informational. Now I know why my hair isn't totally white like my two sisters. Hide

almost 3 years ago, said...

hi . I am girl and i'm 24 . in last 2 years , I lost about 3/4 of my hair :-( I went to dermatologist and he tested my hormones level . we found out that my DTH level was too high and I start using finasteride 5 but in this last year I use this pill , nothing change and unfortunatly it goes worse !! I tested my hormones levels again , my DTH level got down but now I don't know why my hair still falls !!!??? :-( i'm so concern with it . can anyone help me ? hi . I am girl and i'm 24 . in last 2 years , I lost about 3/4 of my hair :-( I went to dermatologist and he tested my hormones level . we found out that my DTH level was too high and I start using finasteride 5 but in this last year I use this pill , nothing change and unfortunatly it goes worse !! I tested my hormones levels again , my DTH level got down but now I don't know why my hair still falls !!!??? :-( i'm so concern with it . can anyone help me ? Hide

about 3 years ago, said...

Melanie thank you so much for this research and I especially appreciate your help on what to do about it. Angie Melanie thank you so much for this research and I especially appreciate your help on what to do about it. Angie Hide

about 3 years ago, said...

I've spent months and months wondering why I've been losing a lot of hair, why I'm growing thick dark hair in unwanted places and why all the hair that I have left is brittle and broken. Surprise! Melanie, you've hit it right on the head! (pun intended) I've just been diagnosed with Cushing's Syndrome and have also found out that my level of parathyroid hormone is very, very low. The Cushing's could reverse but I'm not holding my breath. The PTH level could be an indicator of something... Show more I've spent months and months wondering why I've been losing a lot of hair, why I'm growing thick dark hair in unwanted places and why all the hair that I have left is brittle and broken. Surprise! Melanie, you've hit it right on the head! (pun intended) I've just been diagnosed with Cushing's Syndrome and have also found out that my level of parathyroid hormone is very, very low. The Cushing's could reverse but I'm not holding my breath. The PTH level could be an indicator of something really nasty. But I'm going to try your advice about the deep conditioning. Maybe if my hair looks better I'll feel a little better. In the meantime, I'll keep wearing big ol' headbands to cover my bald spots! Hide

about 3 years ago, said...

Dear Melanie Haiken: The article re: eight things your hair says about your health was very informative and although I am blessed with beautiful, healthy, shiny long hair, I began noticing that the roots of my normal, lifelong blonde hair were growing in about 3 shades darker after I managed to survive a rather difficult menopause 10 years ago. I began using a mild semi-permanent blonde hair color product on the roots. That helped to regain the overall natural hair color but since it was... Show more Dear Melanie Haiken: The article re: eight things your hair says about your health was very informative and although I am blessed with beautiful, healthy, shiny long hair, I began noticing that the roots of my normal, lifelong blonde hair were growing in about 3 shades darker after I managed to survive a rather difficult menopause 10 years ago. I began using a mild semi-permanent blonde hair color product on the roots. That helped to regain the overall natural hair color but since it was semi-permanent hair color product ("Level 2") the dark roots began showing up not long after using the "at home" hair color product. It was an easy "fix" to start using permanent hair color products at home, using less harsh chemicals and ingredeients (and Much Less Costly) on my hair following the directions of the hair color product manufacturer. I have been SO pleased with the results! For almost 6 weeks, my hair is very close to its natural blonde shade. It has not become dry or brittle nor have I lost more hair than is normal and it helps me retain my youthful appearance. I am 61 years old but people frequently remark that I look 50 years old or less. Because I have fine hair, you might think it looks thin and "stringy". That is not the case because I have thick hair (meaning I have a lot of it) and adding a few drops of a silky, anti-friz hair product such as Biosilk serum or Fruitopia Silky Smooth liquid to the ends of my hair first, while it is still damp and drying it on medium or low heat setting on my hair dryer, my hair looks and feels full, healthy and very soft. I know heredity plays an important role in why my hair looks so good. I have been blessed with great "hair genes" and intend to wear it long and blonde until it no longer looks or feels healthy. I see far too many women my age and younger, who pay too much $ to have their hair colored professionally at a salon. They may look good when they leave the salon but after they wash it at home, and attempt to style it like their hair stylist does, it seems obvious to me how dry and unhealthy it really is. The products used in hair salons are Generally much harsher (hair color products) which dry out their hair permanently. To those women, I suggest that you try using a less damaging at home hair color product yourself. If you cannot do it yourself, ask a friend or family member to help you. It is very easy and quick to do it yourself! Follow the suggestions of the manufacturer. If you have medium or dark brown hair with gray that you want to cover, I suggest using a product close to your natural brown shade, for best results. You are not fooling anyone by changing your hair color drastically to a blonde shade. That is true whether you pay someone at a salon or you do it yourself. Be happy that you have healthy brown hair without gray! I also want to mention Menopause for the women who are either in that stage of life or may be one day. Hormones play a big role in anyone's hair whether you are a woman or a man. When I was going through the lengthy process (almost 10 years ) of menopause, one of the natural changes for me, was that after shampooing and conditioning, I noticed large clumps of hair loss. And after brushing my hair I also saw what I considered to be large amounts of hair loss. That did bother me because my usual thick, healthy head of hair was beginning to be thin and overly dry. I was also having menopausal symptoms that were more troubling such as night sweats, hot flashes, difficulty sleeping, swift mood changes, weight gain, depression and others which made my life very uncomfortable and unpleasant to me and people around me. (Add heavy bleeding which caused anemia and the necessity of a blood transfusion. I had also fainted 5 times and fell, injuring myself and having to go to the ER for treatment ) All were the result of hormones being out of control and finally, after the 5th trip to the ER, my Gyn. Did believe that I needed something more than herbal supplements and he prescribed a low dose of HRT which was the answer to my prayer. The HRT did take 2 weeks to kick in and it was as if a switch had been turned OFF. Very rarely did I have any of those menopausal symptoms. After only 1 month I noticed the change in my hair: hair loss much less and new hair growth healthy and strong once again. I am not recommending HRT for women Just for the health of their hair. HRT is not for every woman as you may know. It has now been 12 years since I went through menopause. I know my hormone imbalance was the cause of those medical problems. It is unfortunate that many Gyn doctors don't believe us about the nature and severity of those symptoms. I hope they are more knowledgeable and.compassionate regarding the use of HRT so more women do not have to suffer as I did. It was no fun being in the hospital for several days for the blood transfusion and stabilization of my body! Sorry I have gotten off topic, but I want to share what happened to me as a result of hormone changes. I also suggest that we drink at least 8-8 ounce cups of water every day. Keep caffeine and alcohol consumption moderate, as both of those can dehydrate us and cause our hair, skin and nails to become dry and unhealthy. The 8 cups of water may seem a lot but if we drink only 1 glass of juice or filtered water per hour, we will have enough a few hours before it is time to go to sleep. Another idea (& then I am finished!) is a remedy for dandruff and/or dry, itchy scalp that my mother learned from HER mother so this goes back over 100+ years. After washing our hair, while it was still damp, our mother used to put Listerine mouthwash directly on our scalp! It did not smell very nice, but for some reason unknown to me, it worked to stop dry scalp and dandruff. I doubt we had dandruff. Whatever caused the flaky white dry "stuff" in our hair, was removed. She used the plain, yellowish color of Listerine mouthwash which then, was the only type available. The rather bad odor of it was gone within a day or two. May you all have healthy hair! Hide

about 3 years ago, said...

Also no hair on my body anywhere else is falling out. I have extremely thick hair on my arms and when I shave any other part of my body there is always new hair. I never find hair on my pillow and there are no patches on my head. Could I maybe just be pulling it out too hard? Also no hair on my body anywhere else is falling out. I have extremely thick hair on my arms and when I shave any other part of my body there is always new hair. I never find hair on my pillow and there are no patches on my head. Could I maybe just be pulling it out too hard? Hide

about 3 years ago, said...

The causes of grey hair. The causes of grey hair. Hide

about 3 years ago, said...

I am scared, my hair is falling out on my head while my scalp is itching inside my head? Hair is also falling out on my arms eyebrows under my arms. I am Diabetic and take several other meds for thyroid, ostioarthritis med and a few more! Please help I am scared, my hair is falling out on my head while my scalp is itching inside my head? Hair is also falling out on my arms eyebrows under my arms. I am Diabetic and take several other meds for thyroid, ostioarthritis med and a few more! Please help Hide

about 3 years ago, said...

My hair out of no where suddenly became lighter sort of like highlights especially on one side of my head I had my hair cut about 2 months ago and waited a month to style and only used heat two times what's going on? My hair out of no where suddenly became lighter sort of like highlights especially on one side of my head I had my hair cut about 2 months ago and waited a month to style and only used heat two times what's going on? Hide

over 3 years ago, said...

Eating 9 foods per day may cut your cholesterol stages and help you remain slim for more information .. http://www.trendsfair.com/eating-9-foods-per-day-may-cut-your-cholestrerol-stages-and-help-you-remain-slim/ Indicating that consuming little and often is better for us, professionals have said that we should eat as many as nine foods every day. They say this may help reduced hypertension and cholesterol stages, and and even motivate weight-loss, the Everyday Email revealed. Eating 9 foods per day may cut your cholesterol stages and help you remain slim for more information .. http://www.trendsfair.com/eating-9-foods-per-day-may-cut-your-cholestrerol-stages-and-help-you-remain-slim/ Indicating that consuming little and often is better for us, professionals have said that we should eat as many as nine foods every day. They say this may help reduced hypertension and cholesterol stages, and and even motivate weight-loss, the Everyday Email revealed. Hide