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Alopecia Areata – So called Puzhuvettu in Tamil

Alopecia Areata (AA):

alopecia_areata

Alopecia is the medical term for baldness.

Alopecia areata is a type of hair loss that occurs when the human immune system will falsely identify the hair matrix as a foreign body and destroys it, leading to patchy hair loss in the region of attack. The damage to the follicle is usually not permanent. It is an autoimmune disease; that is, the person’s immune system attacks their own body. In this case, their hair follicles. T cell lymphocytes cluster around affected follicles, causing inflammation and subsequent hair loss. The extent of the hair loss varies; in some, it is only in a few spots and in others, the hair loss can be greater.

alopecia-areata

It is believed that the person’s genetic make up may trigger the autoimmune reaction of alopecia areata, along with other unknown triggers.

What happens in alopecia areata?

Alopecia areata usually begins when clumps of hair fall out, resulting in totally smooth, round hairless patches on the scalp. In some cases the hair may become thinner without noticeable patches of baldness, or it may grow and break off, leaving short stubs (called “exclamation point” hair). In rare cases, complete loss of scalp hair and body hair occurs. The hair loss often comes and goes—hair will grow back over several months in one area but will fall out in another area.

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Symptoms of AA:

Typical first symptoms of AA are small bald patches. The underlying skin is unscarred and looks superficially normal. These patches can take many shapes, but are most usually round or oval. AA most often affects the scalp and beard, but may occur on any hair-bearing part of the body.7d1f1d71-84a9-4a9d-9b29-55444cd77d85 alopecia-areata_691950574e5e8c1c6a22b

Classification:

Commonly, alopecia areata involves hair loss in one or more round spots on the scalp.

  • Hair may also be lost more diffusely over the whole scalp, in which case the condition is called diffuse alopecia areata.
  • Alopecia areata monolocularis describes baldness in only one spot. It may occur anywhere on the head.
  • Alopecia areata multilocularis refers to multiple areas of hair loss.
  • Ophiasis refers to hair loss in the shape of a wave at the circumference of the head.
  • The disease may be limited only to the beard, in which case it is called alopecia areata barbaealopecia_areata1_beard
  • If the patient loses all the hair on the scalp, the disease is then called alopecia totalis.
  • If all body hair, including pubic hair, is lost, the diagnosis then becomes alopecia universalis.

Alopecia areata totalis and universalis are rare.

230px-AlopeciaTotalis

 

How is alopecia areata diagnosed?

Alopecia areata is diagnosed through a medical history and physical examination. The doctor will ask questions about the hair loss, look at the pattern of hair loss, and examine the scalp. And he or she may tug gently on a few hairs or pull some out.

If the reason for your hair loss is not clear, the doctor may do tests to check for a disease that could be causing the hair loss. Tests include:

  • Hair analysis. Your doctor will take a sample of your hair and examine it under a microscope. A scalp sample is also sometimes taken.
  • Blood tests, including testing for a specific condition, such as an overactive or underactive thyroid gland (hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism).

Prone to Alopecia Areata?

Anyone can develop alopecia areata; however, chances of having alopecia areata are slightly greater if you have family history with the disease. In addition, alopecia areata occurs more often among people who have family members with other autoimmune disorders such as diabetes, lupus, or thyroid disease.

How stress triggers Alopecia Areata???

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Tips for Alopecia Areata:

Cosmetic and protective techniques that people with alopecia areata can try include:

  • Using makeup to hide or minimize hair loss
  • Wearing coverings (wigs, hats, or scarves) to protect the head from the elements
  • Reducing stress. Many people with new-onset alopecia areata have had recent stresses in life, such as work, family, deaths, surgeries, accidents, etc. However, this has not been proven scientifically as a cause of alopecia areata.

Alopecia areata does not affect you as another condition might: it is not painful, it does not make you feel sick, and it does not result in serious health problems. You cannot spread it to other people, and it should not interfere with school, work, or recreation.

But if hair loss is making to feel unattractive, it is important to talk to someone about it.

Alopecia areata cannot be totally cured; however, it can be treated and hair can grow back. While the disease is not medically serious, it can impact people psychologically. Support groups are available to help people with alopecia areata deal with the psychological effects of the condition.

Alopecia can certainly be the cause of psychological stress. Because hair loss can lead to significant appearance changes, individuals may experience social phobia, anxiety, and depression.

Management for Alopecia Areata:

  1. 3o min Yoga and meditative techniques to regulate the homeostasis of the body and relax the mind
  2. Skin, hair and nails are chemically related. Basic requirements for the health of these structures include adequate intakes of nutrients such as protein, essential fatty acids, minerals and vitamins.
  3. The following are some general recommendations for improving the health of the hair:
    • Biotin is an essential vitamin which has been found in clinical trials to strengthen soft brittle nails and reduce breaking and splitting after 12 weeks.
    • Silica is concentrated in the nails, hair and skin and contributes to collagen formation to help it to strengthen.
    • Improve Kidney function, thereby improve circulation and energy to the hair shaft to stimulate growth.
    • A multivitamin supplement may be of assistance to ensure that you are consuming adequate amounts of nutrients needed to build new hair and strengthen the quality of the hair.
    • Zinc helps maintain the structural integrity of the nails, hair and skin and is important for a healthy immune system.
    • Emu oil can be used topically on the scalp to reduce the resting phase (dormancy) of the hair follicles
    • Vitamin C is important in the production of collagen and for a healthy immune system.
    • Folic acid, iron, manganese, Silica, beta-carotene and vitamin B5 all assist with metabolism of nutrients important for nails, hair and skin.
    • The herb Ginkgo may help to stimulate circulation to the hair shaft.
    • Many women have used the herb Saw Palmetto successfully in alopecia as it addresses hormonal imbalances, other herbs which may be of benefit are Dong Quai, Vitex and Paeonia
    • Protein is an important food group which contributes to the overall health and quality of the hair.
    • For healthy hair and scalp choose a diet rich in fresh fruit and vegetables, especially leafy green vegetables, and suggest you eat some good protein sources everyday.  It is important to have a balanced diet to ensure your hair receives sufficient nutrients to stay strong and healthy.
    • It is also recommend to use gentle hair products that protect the hair shaft and keep it supple.  It is recommended that you avoid shampoos, conditioners and hair products which use Sodium Lauryl Sulphate.

 

 

Androgenetic Alopecia – Common Problem

ANDROGENETIC ALOPECIA (AGA)

baldness

DEFINITION:

–  Loss of hair in male and female in a particular pattern because of male hormone leading to baldness is known as AndroGenetic alopecia.

–   Semi – permanent type of hair loss

  • Confined to particular area or pattern
  • Forms different patterns in male and female

ORIGIN:

ANDRO – MALE ; GENETIC – GENE

ANDROGEN – MALE HORMONE; ETIC – BECAUSE OF

CAUSES OF ANDROGENETIC ALOPECIA

      1. Genetic predisposition
      2. Male Sex hormone Testosterone

AGA – CAUSES

  • Genetic predisposition  –  Because of a genetic marker in chromosome 20 P11.
  • Male Sex Hormone  2 molecules of free testosterone react to form Dihydro testosterone in the presence of 5 alpha reductase. DHT shrinks the follicles, making them inactive. This process is called miniaturization of follicles.

REASONS FOR EXCESS TESTOSTERONE PRODUCTION hair loss

  • Oxidative stress
  • Excess carbohydrate consumption
  • Estrogen insufficiency in female
  • Hypothyroid in female
  • Menopause
  • Steroidal injections

Male Pattern Baldness:

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Female Patter Baldness:

ludwig-scale-2                Female-Pattern-Hair-Loss1

 

 

 

DIETARY CORRECTIONS:  no smoke

  • Adequate consumption of fruits and vegetables.
  • Limited consumption of processed foods.
  • Limited consumption of high calorie foods
  • Adequate consumption of protein rich foods
  • Adequate consumption of water

LIFESTYLE ADJUSTMENTS:  

  • Avoid smoking, drinks, tobacco and drugs.
  • Limit the consumption of coffee, tea and aerated drinks.
  • Consumption of food at proper time intervals.
  • Going to bed by 10 PM.
  • Adequate sleep to an average extent of 8 hours a day.
  • Aerobic exercise for at least 30 minutes in a day

 

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For further remedies – e – mail @ swastikanature@gmail.com

Hair Loss – A bird’s eye view

PATHOLOGY OF HAIR

female-hair-loss

  1. Diffused Alopecia
  2. AndroGenetic Alopecia
  3. Alopecia Areata
  4. Premature Greying of Hair
  5. Other Hair Disorders

DIFFUSED HAIR LOSS (DHL)

  • Temporary/ reversible form of hair loss if treated
  • If not considered leads to permanent hair loss Are-You-Experiencing-Diffuse-Hair-Loss
  • Not confined to particular area or pattern
  • Present all over the scalp

DIFFUSED HAIR LOSS – CAUSES

  1. Scalp disorders
  2. Hormonal problems
  3. Hemoglobin deficiency
  4. Recent fever, surgeries and accidents
  5. Nutritional deficiencies
  6. Physical strain   diffuse-alopecia
  7. Mental stress
  8. Harsh chemicals
  9. Pollution
  10. Sudden change of products

SCALP DISORDERS

Scalp disorders like dandruff, seborrhea, eczema, psoriasis weakens hair roots, disturbs anagen phase and causes hair fall.

DANDRUFF AND SEBHORREA

  • DEFN: Accumulation and shedding of dead cells from the scalp in the form of whitish or brownish color flakes.
  • TYPES: – DRY – WHITISH FLAKES

– OILY – BROWNISH FLAKES dandruf

  • TEXTURE: Matty and Glossy Finishing

CAUSES AND MECHANISM OF DANDRUFF

  • Unclean scalp – accumulation of dead cells leading to dandruff
  • Extremes of weather – high humidity – increase in sweat – feed of fungus
  • Low humidity – absorption of moisture from the skin by atmosphere – dry scalp – dandruff
  • Excessive head wash – dampness in scalp – dry shaft – dandruff
  • Excessive combing – inflammation and injuries to follicles
  • Dietary deficiency – decreased zinc, selenium – decreased WBC – decreased immunity – increased fungal infection – dandruff, white flakes
  • Hormonal imbalance
  • Hypothyroidism – moisture absorption from skin for metabolism – dry scalp – dandruff
  • Hyperthyroidism – increased metabolic rate – excess cell multiplication – increased cell production – incomplete dryness of gluten – dry flakes – dandruff

Dandruff – white flakes + increased sebum = oily dandruff – feed by fungus (air borne, Melasthesia Furfur) on flakes – multiplication of fungal colonies – flakes not sufficient – digging of pores (itching sensation) – body reacts and creates inflammation – erupts dermis and epi dermis – protrusion of scalp – soft skin breaks and bleeds – leads to inflammation – WBC get destroyed – pus cells form – bad odour – spreads all over scalp – Sebhorreic Dermatitis

HORMONAL PROBLEMS hormonal imbal

  • Hypothyroidism generally lowers the metabolic rate and affects cell division causing diffused hair loss. Hyperthyroidism increases cell division and leads to dandruff, which in turn causes hair fall.

HEMOGLOBIN DEFICIENCY

  • In case of hemoglobin deficiency, the oxygen carrying capacity of blood is affected. Hence the cellular energy production and cell multiplication is disrupted in the hair follicles. This causes hair fall.

RECENT FEVER, SURGERIES AND ACCIDENTS fever

  • Fever, surgeries and accidents takes the hair follicles to an emergency situation and subsequently they go into dormancy. This causes hair fall.

NUTRITIONAL DEFICIENCIES

  • Protein deficiency disturbs the supply of amino acids to the hair shaft leading to hair thinning and subsequent fall. Vitamin and mineral deficiencies disrupts cell processes causing hair fall.

PHYSICAL STRAIN phyic

  • Physical strain leads to energy drain, disrupting the cell renewal process. This makes the anagen hairs go to telogen phase. Increased macro circulation and decreased micro circulation

MENTAL STRESS stress

  • Stress causes vaso constriction (constriction of blood vessels) affecting microcirculation to the hair follicles. This causes hair loss.

HARSH CHEMICALS

  • Stress causes vaso constriction (constriction of blood vessels) affecting microcirculation to the hair follicles. This causes hair loss.

POLLUTION pollution

  • Water pollution causes scalp problems like dandruff, eczema, etc and leads to hair loss. Severe water pollution can also lead to scaling on the scalp. It can also cause dry hair.
  • Air pollution disrupts oxygen supply to the hair matrix cells and affects cell renewal

SUDDEN CHANGE OF PRODUCTS harsh chemicals

  • Usage of harsh cosmetics and personal care products can cause eczema and dandruff and lead to hair loss. Generally shifting from one product to another can also cause temporary hair loss.

 

DIAGNOSIS – DHL

  • Physical observation
    • Identify the presence of scalp disorders
  • Microscopic observation
    • Condition of hair roots, no of hairs from one pore and thickness of hair.
  • Blood Tests
    • Hemoglobin, CBC, Thyroid profile, ESR, T3, T4, TSH
  • Trichoscan trichoscan
    • Measures hair density, anagen, telogen hairs
  • Hair mineral analysis
    • Identify nutritional deficiencies and toxic mineral poisoning.

 

TREATMENT MODALITIES

  • DIETARY CORRECTIONS – LOW OIL, SALT, MASALA DIET, FIBRE RICH, INCREASED INTAKE OF WATER
  • LIFESTYLE MODIFICATIONS – STRESS FREE LIFESTYLE, YOGA, RELAXATION TECHNIQUES, MEDITATION

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Other Remedies – Contact Natural Team at swastikanature@gmail.com

other Hair Disorders in Next Post – Wait and See 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hair Disorders – Simple Problem But most Embarrassing

INTRODUCTION – HAIR

Hair – Anatomy

– Partially live and partially dead, belongs to integumentary sy

– Follicle part (root) live and shaft part dead

STRUCTURE OF HAIR

hair structure

 

Skin

– 7 layers – 2 dermal layers, 5 epidermal layers

– Dermis – 2 layers – Reticular and Columnar layers

– Extension of dermis – follicle, Extension of Epidermis – hair shaft

hair

DESCRIPTION OF THE LAYERS

hairshaft 2               hair2

  • Reticular dermis – Rich in blood vessels
  • Columnar dermis – Filled with cells, extra – cellular matrix, gluten
  • Follicle – root of the hair – contains hair matrix, dermal papilla
  • Dermal papilla – seat of the follicle, connectivity between the hair follicle and shaft, presence of androgen receptors
  • Hair matrix – contains stem cells, keratinocytes and melanocytes
  • Stem cells – mother cells producing new undifferentiated cells
  • Keratinocytes – normal cells – contains melanin pigment and other nutrients and forms as a shaft
  • Melanocytes – produces melanin pigment
  • Interstitial spaces – present in between dermal papilla through which the cells squeeze out to form shaft
  • Arrector pilli muscle – supports the hair shaft and keeps the hair erect
  • Sebaceous gland – secretes sebum, regulates body temperature, lubricates and avoids friction

PARTS OF SHAFT

hair shaft                       cs hair

 

 

cs hair 2

  • Cuticle – Outermost, Discontinuous, transparent layer
  • Cortex – Contains keratinocytes
  • Medulla – Functionally not significance not defined

 PHYSIOLOGY/ FUNCTIONS OF HAIR:

  • Protective
  • Excretory
  • Beauty

CYCLES/ PHASES OF HAIR GROWTH:

hair cycle                                              hair 3 stages

  • ANAGEN – GROWTH PHASE
  • CATEGEN – INTERMEDIATE PHASE
  • TELOGEN – RESTING PHASE
  • RE- ANAGEN – REGROWTH PHASE

stages of hair

TYPES OF HAIRS

  • VELLUS HAIRS:
  • Lifeless Hair
  • Elasticity of Arrector Pilli is lost
  • Colorless
  • Forms as question mark
  • Tends to fall hair
  • Strength less hair
  • Latin – Vellus -“a fleece” or “wool”

hair development

  • INTERMEDIATE HAIRS:
  • Phase of conversion of vellus hair into terminal or vise versa

types of hair

  • TERMINAL HAIRS:
  • Good hair
  • Strengthened hair

Regarding Hair disorders and remedies – please wait for the next post 🙂