Everybody wants their hair to be voluminous, shiny and smooth because they consider being healthy. But it’s not unusual to experience bad hair days and hair fall. So, don’t worry about seeing locks of lost hair strands after you comb or down at the drain when you shampoo. Some amount of hair fall is considered to be normal for people of all ages.
As important as it is not to worry, it is also necessary to understand the difference between hair shedding and hair loss. Hair shedding happens because hair becomes naturally loose or disconnects from the scalp. Hair loss occurs when your experiencing hair fall is unusual for you personally and leads to bald spots and patchiness. Keep reading to find out about how much hair fall is normal in a day.
How much hair fall is normal in a day?
According to experts, it is normal to lose anywhere from 50 to 100 strands of hair per day. There are 100,000 hair follicles on a person’s scalp; therefore, the loss of 100 hair doesn’t make a difference and is considered natural.
Average hair loss in men and women
Although there is no correct way to measure the hair fall difference objectively compared to men, women lose more hair per day than men. Factors like hair coloring and heat styling also lead to extra hair shedding. Women are more likely to experience increased hair shedding during and after the period of pregnancy and menopause.
The life cycle of hair
The life cycle of hair is studied to understand better how hair grows, and the ways in which we can ensure your hair follows a healthy growth cycle. The hair growth cycle is composed of four distinct phases. Each phase has its timeline, which can be affected by age, nutrition, stress, hygiene and daily styling.
Anagen: The growing Phase: During the anagen phase, hair grows out about 1 centimeter per month. Almost 90 % of the hair on your head are in this stage. When some factors stop your hair from growing at this stage, the condition is called anagen effluvium.
Catagen: The transition phase: Hair growth stops, and hair follicles shrink in this stage. This phase continues for about two to three weeks.
Telogen: The resting to shedding phase: In this phase, hair strands, also called “club hair”, rest as they prepare to detach from the scalp. At any given time, this phase consists of about 8 to 9 percent of your hair. In addition to this, Telogen effluvium is a condition in which more than 10 percent of your hair are in the telogen stage. Although an increased amount of hair falls in this condition (which can be further aggravated by conditions like fever, or if you are stressed etc.) but the hair fall recovers and gets back to normal within six months.
Causes of Hair Fall
Excessive hair fall can be a result of the following common conditions:
- Telogen effluvium
- Anagen effluvium
- Family history (heredity).
- Hormonal changes and medical conditions
- Medications and supplements
- Radiation therapy to the head
- Hairstyles and treatments including excessive washing, bleaching, brushing
- Significant weight loss
- Certain medical conditions, such as diabetes, thyroid and lupus
- Prolonged excessive stress
- Poor nutrition
- Old age
The list as mentioned above consists of only the common causes. If the amount of your hair fall is worrying you, contact your dermatologists to determine the exact cause.
Can you tell if you are losing too much hair?
Now that you know the average hair fall per day for men and women, there are two common ways to determine if you’re losing too much hair:
Pull Test: Take a small amount of your clean, dry hair. Run your fingers through your hair and pull gently as you come towards the end of your hair strands. You may be suffering from telogen or anagen effluvium if more than three-four hair or more than 10 hair per 100 pull are left in your hand after each gentle pull.
Comb Test: A preliminary method to check for abnormal hair fall by leaning over a light surface and combing hair from the back of your head to the front of your scalp. After a minute of combing, if more than 10-15 hair strand fall, you may have abnormal hair fall.
When to see a doctor?
See a doctor if you notice excessive hair fall for a prolonged time period, leading to receding hair line or thinning of hair. A gradual thinning on top of your head, full-body hair loss and the appearance of patchy or bald spots on your scalp are all signs that may indicate an underlying health condition. So, if you’re concerned about your hair fall, talk to your doctor to understand the reason and the best possible solutions.
Although it is normal to lose strands of hair every day, if you’re concerned that you are losing an unusual amount of hair, do talk to a doctor. Professional advice will not help put your mind at ease and determine the underlying cause (if any) behind the hair fall.