There are plenty of misconceptions circulating everywhere about hair loss and hair fall. Old wives’ tales and myths abound on who, why, when, and what causes excessive hair shedding, hair loss, and baldness. And both men and women fall victim to these various myths.
Our post for today will highlight 7 of the commonly believed-in hair fall misconceptions. We’ll get right through the facts that will ultimately debunk these myths.
1. All males go bald upon entering 50 years old.
This is a big no! Male pattern baldness can come to anyone at any age. It’s just that plenty of men over the age of 50 starts to have significantly thinning hair or even signs of baldness.
Around 85% of males above 50 already experience some noticeable degree of hair loss, according to the American Hair Loss Association. But this does not necessarily mean that a man becomes bald come his 50th birthday. Male pattern baldness can start as early as 35 years old, and the American Hair Loss Association also puts the percentage of young men getting appreciable hair loss at around 66%.
So no, you won’t automatically get thinning hair or a bald head once you get to 50 years.
2. Men don’t care even if they gradually lose their hair.
Women are typically vocal about their hair loss or hair fall. They’re not afraid to speak up and show their emotions or disappointment towards their thinning locks.
Meanwhile, society dictates that men hide their emotions in general. This also rings true for any man suffering from hair loss. Some may appear tough and get on with their lives as if hair loss isn’t bothering them. Others may even put on a happy face and even joke around about their bald heads or thinned hair.
But in reality, men can be equally devastated about hair loss as women are. The American Hair Loss Association is well-aware that men with male pattern baldness aren’t happy with their condition. Hair loss and baldness can eat away men’s confidence and self-esteem, and lots of them are willing to do all that it takes just to reverse their thinning hair and baldness.
Men care a lot about their hair and how it completes their overall look. Hence, they get excessively worried about hair fall and baldness. This is why it is important to get emotional support if you’re one of these lads or show empathy and encouragement to the men in your family currently suffering from male pattern baldness.
3. Shampoo causes hair fall.
Not at all! Shampooing your hair keeps it clean and healthy, which is the polar opposite of dirty, damaged locks that are more prone to hair fall. People used to believe that daily shampoo can trigger hair fall or exacerbate any existing hair loss conditions. But in reality, the trick is to use a shampoo that’s a perfect match for your hair type.
You should steer clear of shampoos that contain harmful ingredients such as sulfates, parabens, and alcohols. These substances can cause dryness and damage in the long run. Stick to better alternatives such as natural hair care products or conventional shampoos that don’t contain these ingredients.
It’s completely up to you if you also want to switch to a “no-poo” method if your hair isn’t excessively oily or dirty. But always keep in mind that shampoo won’t cause hair fall or baldness. So, don’t fret if you see a few hairs coming out after you use your shampoo – this is completely normal hair shedding only.
4. Other hair products can cause hair fall and baldness.
Creams, gels, sprays, and even hair dyes have long been pinpointed as culprits of hair loss. But this claim is false because these products are inherently not bad for your hair. Otherwise, they should have been out of the market for a long time already!
It’s the excessive use and product build-up on the scalp that contributes to the possibility of getting hair fall. Since the hair follicles are blocked by product build-up on your scalp, they find it hard to form healthy new hairs even if they are currently in the anagen hair cycle phase.
5. Hair is lost randomly throughout the head.
Hairs just don’t fall randomly from anywhere on your head. Several types of hair loss follow characteristic patterns that also make them distinguishable from each other.
- Male pattern baldness generally starts with forehead hairs falling out first. It gradually progresses to the back of the head until a noticeable M shape has formed. Thinning will then start on the top of the head and spreads until only a U-shaped ring of hair remains around the bottom, back, and sides of the head.
- Female pattern baldness starts with thinning around your hair’s part. You’ll notice a gradual widening of your part until there is a noticeable see-through area on top of your scalp. Receding temple hairs may also be seen.
- Alopecia areata is characterized by round and smooth patches of hair loss. It tends to affect several areas on the entire scalp.
- Telogen effluvium presents with rapid generalized thinning across the entire scalp. But the initial symptoms include thinning hair at the temples and on the crown.
As you can see, hair loss occurs with a specific pattern for each kind of hair loss condition.
6. Sunshine exposure causes hair to fall.
You might have heard that you’ll experience hair loss if you are frequently exposed to the sun. This could spell bad news if you’re an outdoor person, your work requires you to be out in the sun, or you frequent the beach during summers.
Luckily, this belief is only an urban legend. Sustained sunshine exposure is not a direct hair loss cause. Your hair will likely become dry, lighter in color, and a bit damaged, though. So, be sure to take sun-shielding measures such as the following:
- Use an SPF for your scalp
- Strengthen your hair with leave-on moisturizers
- Wear a wide-brimmed hat whenever possible
It’s also a good idea to avoid too much sunlight exposure as much as you possibly can.
7. Hair loss is always inherited from your mother.
Some hair loss conditions are hereditary. But it doesn’t solely come from your mother alone. An estimated 200 genes play roles in determining a person’s risk for hair loss. And these genes both come from the mother and the father.
In fact, a study on male pattern hair loss showed that the majority of the participants inherited their conditions from their fathers. This finding is in conjunction with histories of hair loss in the participants’ mothers and maternal grandfathers.
Genetics play a huge role in transmitting conditions such as male and female pattern baldness. But note that both mothers and fathers equally have the capacity to pass on hair loss genes to their children.
Summing It All Up
Now you know the real facts surrounding 7 common hair fall myths most people believe in. Remember that correct and accurate knowledge about hair fall and hair loss will ultimately save your thinning locks and mane in the long run.
Have you ever believed in one of these hair fall myths? Or do you have any other hair fall myths in mind? Do let us know in the comments section below!