What is trichology?

Trichology is the medical discipline that involves knowledge and study of hair and body hair. It aims to diagnose and cure hair and scalp diseases. The trichologist doctor is the professional specialized in the diagnosis and treatment of those diseases.

When to seek a trichologist doctor?

Thinning of the hair, constant presence of hair in the shower stall, in the sink, in the hair comb, on the car seat or on the work table are signs for alert.

The sooner the diagnosis, the greater the possibility of reversion.

What does alopecia mean?

Alopecia is the medical term for Baldness. It derives from the word “alopex” that in Greek means fox. This animal loses body hair during its life cycles; thus, alopecia means unusual hair loss.

What are the most frequent causes of hair loss?

The causes of unusual hair loss are several; among those, the following stand out: Androgen alterations (more frequent in men), hormonal alterations (more frequent in women), dandruff, seborrhea and scalp infections, thyroid disorders, polycystic ovaries, stress, autoimmune diseases, infectious and parasitic diseases, major surgeries, medications, nutritional and vitamin deficiencies, psychiatric disorders, depression, chemotherapy or radiotherapy, illicit drugs and alcohol.

Can hair loss be cured?

Given the diversity of alopecia causes, every patient must be examined by a trichologist doctor for assessment of the patient’s specific condition. Trichology relies on resources to lessen and even reverse hair loss condition in most cases. Remember that the sooner the proper diagnosis is made, the greater the possibilities for reversion.

Is there any connection between food and hair loss?

In some cases, yes. Predominantly hairs are formed by a protein named keratin. Thus, a balanced diet requires ingestion of protein. Some foods containing that element are beef, fish, soy beans and milk-derivatives.

Will children born to bald parents necessarily be bald, too?

Not necessarily. Genetic baldness skips generations, thus children born to bald father and/or mother will not necessarily be bald.

Is there hair loss during pregnancy?

No. During pregnancy hair may even grow more. After a baby’s birth there is loss up to the fourth post-delivery month. Following such period there is hair restoration. In case that does not happen, visit a specialist.

Are there several types of baldness?

Yes, there are several types of baldness. For the best treatment to be indicated for each patient, the patient must be assessed by a trichologist doctor. Trichology relies on technological advances that enable an accurate diagnosis of the cause of hair loss, promoting restoration.

Is there hair loss in children?

Yes, in Brazil the most frequent cause of baldness is under nutrition. Autoimmune diseases, as areata alopecia, for instance, may cause a child to become bald.

Can hair loss mean a risk of death?

Yes. Hair loss is many times connected with acute diseases, of aggressive evolution that can significantly affect the patient’s health. A few examples can be given: psychiatric disorders, such as nervous anorexia, depression, use of illegal drugs; thyroid gland diseases; leukemia and lymphoma; dengue, etc. Diagnosis by a trichologist doctor is fundamental.

What does seborrheic dermatitis mean?

Seborrheic dermatitis is a scalp inflammation due to excess oiliness. It causes scaling, redness and itching. Dandruff is formed by granules that result from seborrheic scaling, containing sebum and dead skin cells.

What is trichoptillomania?

Trichoptillomania is a psychiatric disorder in which the patient compulsively pulls out his/her own hair. The patient usually swallows the hair pulled out. A severe complication, named trichobezoar (hair ball), may occur due to excess hair ingestion, leading to bowel obstruction of surgical treatment.

Does disruption of the contraceptive pill cause hair loss?

Yes, but the loss is temporary. Should it persist, you must visit a trichologist doctor.

Is Minoxidil bad for the heart?

No. Excess use can cause tachycardia (faster heart beat rate); in such case, discontinue its use and inform your doctor.

Does hair dyeing cause hair loss?

No, provided the procedure is properly done, with products approved by ANVISA and at a 30-day interval.

Does hair cut lessen the loss?

No. That’s a myth. There is no connection between hair cut and hair loss.

Is grey hair weaker?

No. It just lacks the color pigment: melanin.

Can dandruff be cured?

No, but if properly diagnosed and treated it can be controlled.

Do anabolic drugs cause hair loss?

Yes, and they can lead to death.

Is putting the hair up harmful?

Yes. Traction can lead to irreversible baldness.

Does stomach reduction cause hair loss?

Yes. Specially if there is no adequate vitamin and iron replacement.

Is baldness due to chemotherapy irreversible?

Yes, in most cases.

Is baldness caused by radiotherapy irreversible?

No. It causes scar lesion.

Is scar lesion reversible?

No. If any kind of scar lesion is installed in the scalp, it will be irreversible.

Is genetic baldness always transmitted by the mother?

No. Genetic baldness has nothing to do with gender.

Management of Baldness

Among the advances achieved in the existing treatments to reverse baldness, non-invasive ones stand out. There are also several and useful medications for baldness management, including phytotherapy ones. Treatments and medications must always be prescribed by a trichologist doctor. Avoid self-medication.

In some cases hair implants (transplants) are indicated. Implants must be very well indicated as they imply surgery, of permanent and irreversible results. Some of the issues to be taken into consideration are: the patient’s gender, relation between the donor and the receptor areas, patient’s age, genetic background, etc.

Signs of alert

Thinning of the hair, constant presence of hairs in the shower stall, in the sink, in the hairbrush, on the clothes, on the car seat or on the work table are signs of alert.

The sooner the diagnosis, the greater the possibility of reversion.