What is Telogen Effluvium Hair Loss?


telogen effluvium hair lossIf you’re looking to find the right hair loss treatment, it’s important to understand why you are losing hair. There are many different types of hair loss, all of which can have different causes and different treatment methods. Once you know what type of hair loss you have, you can find the right hair loss treatment that will work for you. One common type of hair loss that both men and women experience is telogen effluvium.

What is Telogen Effluvium?

Everybody loses a certain amount of hair each day. In fact, it’s normal to shed around 100 hairs every day. This is because our hair growth goes through a cycle. Normally, our hair will grow for a couple years. Then, it goes into a resting stage for a couple months. Finally, we shed these hairs. Once they fall out, we begin to regrow them.

However, if our body experiences a shock due to severe physical or emotional stress, up to 70% of our hair can enter a resting state. After a couple months, these hairs will all fall out, leading to a diffuse thinning. This is called telogen effluvium hair loss (TE hair loss). It can be a sudden and severe form of hair loss, with over half of the scalp’s hair being shed.

Ways to Lose Handfuls of Hair

There are three different types of TE hair loss. The first, as described above, occurs when our bodies experience a shock and a large amount of hair is put into a resting state. While this can cause major hair loss, it is only temporary. Eventually, these shed hairs are replaced with regrowth.

However, if we experience a persistent amount of stress or shock, our hair follicles may enter a prolonged resting state. This means that even after hair is shed it will not be replaced by new, growing hair. Over time, this leads to greater hair thinning.

Finally, there’s also a type of telogen effluvium where our hair goes through a shortened growth cycle, which means it only grows a little bit before it quickly falls out. People with this type of hair loss will experience frequent shedding of small hairs.

How Stress and Anxiety Can Cause Hair Loss

There are many things which can cause telogen effluvium, including illnesses, medication side effects, changing hormone levels, surgery, and infections. However, one common cause is actually psychological stress. Stress, anxiety, and depression can all cause us to experience this form of hair loss.

For instance, when we experience something tragic or greatly upsetting, our bodies will undergo a great shock and we can begin losing hair in handfuls; however, chronic, stress—such as from overwork or an anxiety problem—can also cause our hair to enter a resting state. Even if we are perfectly healthy and not predisposed to hair loss, something as simple as stress can cause us to begin going bald.

Treatments on Telogen Effluvium Hair Loss

Most of the time, telogen effluvium will resolve on its own within half a year. However, if hair loss is still present after six months or so, there may be a persistent trigger that is causing you to lose your hair. It is important to figure out what that trigger is and remove it. Triggers can include certain medications, undiagnosed conditions (such as thyroid disease or infections), anxiety disorders, chronic stress, or even certain nutrient or mineral deficiencies.

Some topical treatments can also be used for hair loss prevention. Certain shampoos, conditioners, and other topical treatments can improve the health of your scalp. Seeing a hair loss specialist is the best way to find out the most effective way to put an end to your specific hair loss.

The Canadian Institute of Hair and Scalp Specialists is an experienced hair transplant organization located in the heart of Mississauga. We have 20 years of experience in hair transplants, replacements, and hair loss treatment procedures. Feel free to contact us for more information about hair transplants or any other hair or scalp concern at 905-272-0190.

by Ken Robson

In business since August 1, 1986, I am the president and also a client at The Canadian Institute of Hair & Scalp Specialists. Having worked with a team of Doctors and Chemists over the years I have compiled a great deal of knowledge in this area, originally involved with a Pharmaceutical company manufacturing vitamins for the hair loss industry. Years ago I was fascinated by the new developments in this area as my own hair was beginning to thin. Studying Trichology at the Toronto clinic I then opened my own office and have enjoyed it ever since.