Everyone Sheds, But How Much Daily Hair Loss Is Really Normal?
Everyone wants voluptuous hair with plenty of movement and shine, so when you look down at the shower drain and see clumps of hair congregating there, you may worry that you’ll never have that. After all, people with magazine-worthy locks don’t lose a bunch of hair, do they?
As a matter of fact, they do.
Daily hair loss is completely normal at every age and for both men and women. There are over 100,000 hair follicles on every person’s head, and for new hairs to grow, old ones must fall out. At any given time, there are loose or already disconnected strands on your head, waiting for you to brush or wash your hair so that they can fall away. Because all the old strands fall away at once and during rigorous hair-care activity, it may seem like you’re losing a lot of hair, but the chances are that what you’re seeing is normal.
If you’re experiencing hair loss that seems more excessive than usual, including clumps falling out, patchiness or bald spots, talk to your primary care physician about using hair stimulating hair products, such as Revita. However, before you assume the worst, learn about how much hair loss is healthy, why hair falls out and what to do if you experience abnormal shedding.
Average Daily Hair Loss
How many strands is it reasonable to lose on any given day? 10? 20? 30? According to the American Academy of Dermatologists, it’s much more than that, at between 50 to 100 strands a day, though some people with thicker hair may lose more. If you have long hair, that 50 to 100 strands may seem alarming, as clumps of long hair are more noticeable than clumps of short hair. However, rest assured that losing that few hairs a day will not make a difference in your hair’s appearance. If you do feel like your hair looks noticeably thinner, look into products designed to give hair a boost, such as Nia reconstructing shampoo and conditioner.
The Lifecycle of Hair
Your head is covered in hundreds of thousands of hairs, and at any given time, every single one of them is at various stages of their two- to five-year lifespan. Though hair grows and dies in phases, outside factors such as hygiene, stress, nutrition and daily styling all play a role in how quickly your strands die.
The hair lifecycle is made up of three main phases: The anagen phase, the catagen phase and the telogen phase. During the anagen phase, your hair grows about one centimeter per month. This phase lasts the longest. During the catagen phase, which lasts for two to three weeks, your hair stops growing. Only 1% to 2% of your hairs are in this phase at one time. In the final stage, a hair strand will come to rest and prepare to detach from your scalp to make room for new hair growth. Approximately 8% to 9% of your hair is in the telogen phase at any given time.
Possible Reasons for Abnormal Hair Loss
Though daily hair loss is healthy, if it’s getting to the point where you’re losing hair in clumps or that you notice bald spots or patches, look to your lifestyle. Are you under a lot of stress? What does your diet look like? Do you use heat, bleach or other damaging products on your hair daily? If lifestyle factors are the cause, a purifying shampoo such as Radia may be all you need to restore your hair to its lush, voluminous state. If lifestyle factors aren’t to blame, you may want to talk to your doctor about other possible causes:
- Thyroid conditions
- Female pattern hair loss
- Nutritional deficiencies
If you don’t feel like you’ve been losing a lot of hair, but you still notice patchiness or that your hair is thinner than usual, you may be experiencing anagen effluvium, which occurs when your hair stops growing. This is the condition people most commonly think of when they think of “hair loss.”
If you recently had a fever for a few days, underwent surgery or are under considerable stress, you may have telogen effluvium. Telogen effluvium is temporary and occurs when more than 10% of your hair is in the final phase of the hair lifecycle. Once it passes, your hair should return to a healthy balance within six months.
How To Tell If You’re Losing Too Much Hair
It’s impractical to think that you can count every single strand you lose daily, so how can you tell if you’re losing too much hair? Perform the pull test. This test involves gathering a small section of clean, dry and combed hair and running your fingers through it. Once you get to the ends of the strands, tug gently. If more than two or three hairs fall out, you may have anagen effluvium or telogen effluvium. If you’re losing more than 10 hairs per 100 strands, you may want to consult a trichologist, who can direct you toward hair loss products that will generate hair growth and prevent excessive future loss.
In most cases, daily hair loss is not a cause for concern. Everyone sheds, and it is unlikely that the hairs you see in the drain each day are an indication of bald spots to come. However, if you’re genuinely concerned, or if you simply want to keep your hair lush and healthy, invest in clinically proven, technologically enhanced hair care products, such as those from DS Laboratories. Shop our catalog of clinically proven products today.