Permanent hair loss is something that none of us wants to experience. Unfortunately, if you are genetically predetermined to experience it, there is little you can do, but there are things you can do to prevent it as long as possible.


Once you reach the age that your hormones decide it's the time for the papillae (the part of the hair that creates new hair cells) to retire, there is nothing you can do about it. What actually happens is the male hormone, testosterone, builds up in the blood vessel going to the papilla (the factory for new hair cells) and blocks it. This makes it impossible for the necessary blood to reach the papilla and nourish it so it can produce more hair cells. How can this be avoided? By discontinuing the production of testosterone (via castration) or by administering a lot of estrogen (the female hormone). Neither option would be a consideration since estrogen will cause a man to develop breasts and to grow in the hip area - simply put - he will start to look like a woman.

Women vs. Men

The situation is a bit different for women than it is for men. Women naturally do not produce as much testosterone as men (only 25% of what men produce) and therefore it does not plague women as early as men. However, when women reach the age of menopause, their estrogen leverls go down, but their testosterone levels stay the same. This leads to some hair loss. Women can receive extra estrogen via hormone therapy, but there is the danger of cancer or blood clots that goes with it.

Those people who are genetically designed to lose their hair at a certain age can do nothing about their permanent hair loss, but there are some people who experience permanent hair loss due to constant abuse. They actually do it to themselves.


The first type of abuse and the easiest to avoid is a filthy scalp. If you do not shampoo often enough, you will begin to get a buildup of dandruff, dirt, and oil. If left long enough and often enough on your scalp, this layer will actually create an airtight cap that will strangle your hair follicles. Your hair on your scalp needs to breathe, so if you choke it with an airtight layer, you will kill your hair cells. It's very easy to avoid this - just shampoo your hair regularly to keep it clean and healthy.

The second type of abuse is continuously bending your hair right at the follicle, going against the natural growth pattern of your hair. Think of the mystical Japanese geisha who always wore their hair pulled up and back. After several years, they would have to camouflage bald spots on their heads. Some women who wear ponytails for many years have experienced this too. Even though hair loss with this type of abuse is usually temporary, it can end up being permanent. By wearing your hair pulled straight back on a regular basis, you are putting constant pressure right at the root of the hair and you are making it difficult for the papillae (the factory for new hair cells) to do their job.

The third type of abuse to your hair that can cause permanent hair loss is the lack of nutrients that your hair needs to thrive. Protein is essential for hair growth. If you see pictures of malnourished people, you'll notice their thin, sickly looking hair. Although a lack of protein can be the cause of just temporary hair loss, it can lead to being a permanent loss.

Iron is also important for hair growth because it increases the amount of oxygen in your blood. Since your hair needs oxygen to live and grow, iron is important for healthy hair. Vitamin E is a great help for your circulatory system, vitamin C for the skin on your scalp, and vitamin B for hair growth. Now I'm not suggesting that you take specific supplements or else your hair won't grow, but eat a healthy diet and shampoo regulartly to make your hair the best it can be.

Author's Bio: 

Nadine Visscher is the author of The Beginner's Guide to Cutting Hair and Cutting Your Own Hair. She has been cutting hair for 20 years and has helped many people save a lot of money by teaching them the necessary basic techniques to give a great haircut at home.