There is tonnes of information around on what to do about hair loss, but how to prevent hair loss is a very different topic. You may have assumed that hair loss can't be prevented, well that is not entirely true - it can!
Vitamins and diet
You know that saying, “You only get out what you put in”? Well believe it or not, it applies to the health of your hair just as much as working hard in your career or hitting the gym. (I was going to use “you are what you eat”… but thought that could sound a little like I was advocating eating healthy hair! Which I’m not.)
In order to have healthy hair, it’s important to have a healthy body. There are tonnes of vitamins and minerals that are essential for healthy hair and a deficiency in any one of them can cause hair fall. It’s important, however, never to guess what you may be deficient in, as taking anything you don’t need can be harmful. Visit your doctor for advice. As well as ensuring that you are getting enough vitamins, there are a few foods you should make sure to include in your regular diet to help stop the onset of preventable hair loss.
Get regular blood tests and general check ups
It’s pretty hard to know if you’re deficient in anything if you don’t get a blood test! Healthy individuals under 35 should get a blood test every 2-3 years whilst those over 35 or with any known illnesses or deficiencies should get a blood test annually. If you are worried about hair loss, mention this to your doctor and they will ensure they order the right tests.
Prevent hair fall caused by over-styling
The rise of the man bun over the past couple of years brought the term ‘traction alopecia’ into the mainstream and women everywhere freaked out because they have been wearing their hair up forever! Traction alopecia is a form of gradual hair loss which occurs when the hair is constantly pulled e.g. tight ponytails (& man buns!).
Overuse of heated styling products like flat irons and curlers can also cause damage to the hair which can cause it to break and fall. If you must fry your hair, make sure to use a heat protection spray and try not to do it every day.
Lots of styling products like gels, mousses and hair sprays can also cause your hair to become brittle and dry which can lead to breakage and hair loss. It’s a good idea to keep products to a minimum and, as much as possible, use natural products and make sure to wash them out at the end of the day – definitely don’t try to brush them out! There are more healthy hair tips here.
Preventing hair loss with good quality hair care products
As alluded to above, natural is best when it comes to your hair. Natural and organic hair care products can be more expensive than their chemical counterparts, but if you’re keen to prevent hair loss, they are a must. The mainstream chemical laden shampoos and conditioners available can cause irritation, dry and strip the hair and can harm the hair and scalp with long term use. If you can’t bring yourself to switch to natural and organic hair care for some reason, at least get some good quality products from your hairdresser – the supermarket stuff is just junk food for your hair.
Avoid emotional and physical stress
Yes, I know, easier said than done. Avoiding all kinds of stress has many health benefits including keeping your hair on your head. Unless you’re already susceptible to hair loss, you‘re not likely to experience hair loss as a result of something relatively common like running late for work, however, hair loss can be caused by the sort of emotional stress experienced during divorce or when a loved one dies. If you’re not great at dealing with emotional stress, it’s a good idea to visit your doctor who may be able to help you with some coping strategies and medical interventions to help prevent stress from interfering with your life.
Physical stress occurs during and illness or injury where your body is too busy keeping you alive to bother about growing your hair. Being diagnosed with a serious illness or being in a bad car accident can certainly cause your body enough physical stress to cause hair fall. Be a good patient and seek help from your doctor to get better when you need it and it may just help you hold onto your hair. There’s more about stress here and here. For a more comprehensive article on stress and hair loss you may want to visit this UK website.
Some forms of hair loss are hereditary, and in women, the tendency for hair loss to be one of your body’s response mechanisms, can be inherited. So if you have this tendency in your family and you want to know how to prevent hair loss, then take these tips on board and be kind to your hair while also making the time to keep yourself in good health.