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Why is my hair thinning and falling out?

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Thinning hair, excessive hair in the drain and balding patches all evoke an emotional response. However, emotional losing your hair may be, you must find out what is causing your hair to fall out before you can reverse the condition. Unfortunately, cases of hair loss are not cut and dry. There are many causes of hair loss and you must narrow in on your particular cause or causes before you will have any clear answers.

Heredity and Hairloss

Male and female pattern baldness is hereditary and accounts for more than 50 percent of hair loss in males over the age of 50 and 40 percent of females over the age of 50, according to Hair Loss Expert.com. Male and female pattern hair loss can strike at any age and follows distinct patterns. Males begin to recede at the hairline and thin out at the crown. Females are thin on top of the head and do not experience any recession. While most cases of hair loss can be blamed on your parents, you should rule out medical causes with the help of your physician.

Medical Conditions and Hair Loss

Certain medical conditions cause hair loss. According to Bernstein Medical, the following conditions may cause hair loss: lupus, anemia, thyroid disease, ovarian tumors, eating disorders and surgery. Hair loss associated with an underlying medical condition is treated by managing the medical condition first and attacking the hair loss second. Hair loss as a result of illness is usually reversible. However, some chronic conditions such as hypothyroidism can affect the condition of your hair throughout your lifetime.

Medication associated with hair loss

Be sure to read the side effects for all of the medicines you are currently taking. Many cause hair loss. Medications used in the treatment of gout, depression, heart disease, blood pressure and arthritis can cause hair loss as stated by MayoClinic.com. Other types of medications commonly cause hair loss and changes in the overall condition of your hair as well.

Stress is always a contributing factor with hair loss

Stress causes alopecia areata, small bald patches and other types of general hair loss. This type of hair loss most commonly follows an emotional or physical trauma. However, general stress disorders can cause this type of loss as well. Hair loss attributed to stress is reversible. Hair loss associated with stress usually starts to grow back after a few months.


Chemical and styling abuse wreak havoc on a healthy head of hair. Over-processed hair, hair that has undergone too many chemical procedures, commonly falls out by the handfuls. If you have recently colored, permed or straightened your hair, your hair loss might be attributed to abuse. In addition to thinning and falling out, damaged hair feels spongy and takes longer to dry. Tension from tight styles, such as cornrows, ponytails and updos, weakens and breaks hair. You may notice hair loss for a few weeks after taking down a tight style.