‘’Hair is the mirror of your health so it most often reflects what is not healthy from within,’’ says Dr Batra. On today’s show I had the pleasure of talking to Dr Batra about the most common problems people face with regards to hair, one of which is hair loss and that can happen at any age. Nowadays even teenagers suffer from it! The other common hair problems are dandruff and premature greying.

Hair loss is a common physiological process says Dr Batra. Hair falls, then grows back and this cycle goes on for 3 years. So if there is more loss than growth the gap will start showing and hairline will start receding. If you lose more than 100 strands of hair in a day then it can be a problem, especially if this hair does not grow back and you notice the scalp showing because of excessive thinning of hair.

Receding hairline happens in males above the age of 40 years. But now even 25 year olds are facing this problem. First clefts start to show on the forehead, then clear skin will start becoming visible where there was hair previously and then people start losing hair from the back. Ultimately by the time they are around 40 or 45 years old the hair on the middle of the head falls away too. This is typically male pattern baldness caused by the male hormone attacking the hair roots causing hair loss. But the hair just above the neck is never lost as it is known to be resistant to the hormone attacking the roots. Female pattern baldness is when the hair starts thinning from the parting causing the parting in the hair to become very visible. In bad cases we can actually see the scalp because of losing too much hair. For people suffering from this it is important to rule out all other health concerns like anaemia etc. before considering treatment. Sometimes fasting too much or dieting yourself to the point of starvation can also increase hair loss. It is hereditary and runs in the family and it can come from either the maternal or paternal side.

One of the main reasons for hair loss in young women and teenagers can be anaemia,  the deficiency of iron in the blood combined with the hormonal changes taking place in the body. Another common reason for hair loss can also be thyroid problems and ovarian disorder which causes hair loss and even slight hair growth on the chin of girls suffering from it.

The more people worry about or obsess over hair loss the more stressed they feel and the more hair loss they might face. At times young boys and girls lose hair at a very young age and this can cause them to lose self-confidence. Dr Batra says that hair is a very small part of your life and people should not let hair loss affect them so much.

Sometimes people suffer hair loss due to very simple reasons like wearing a very tight cap all day. Using a cap constantly does not allow the scalp to breath easily, the pores might get blocked due to sweat and cause hair loss. If wearing a cap is necessary then he recommends wearing a loose one.

There are nearly 50 different reasons for hair loss and certain amount of precaution and care can prevent it.

  • Taking good care of hair
  • Maintaining hair hygiene
  • Eating nutritious food
  • Sleeping on time
  • Staying relaxed and not getting too anxious or stressed

Talking about using heat on the hair Dr Batra said that heat can destroy the roots and affect the quality of hair. So blow drying the hair or using too much heat on the hair for styling should be avoided as much as possible. Using too many chemical hair products like hair gels or hair sprays, they affect not only the hair but also the scalp. Hair is keratin which is like a protein and when it is heated too much or too many chemicals are used on it you are actually killing it said Dr Batra. He also recommends washing your hair whenever you do any activity that causes sweating or even swimming where the chlorine in the water can affect the hair if not washed away.

Speaking about hair transplant Dr Batra said that this option of treatment is available to most people suffering from hair loss but the chances of 100% success depends on every individual. He said that the procedure is performed by plastic surgeons. The hair on the back of the neck which is resistant to DST that causes hair loss is taken and transplanted in the area where there is no hair growth.

Talking about greying hair/white hair in early ages, Dr Batra said that there is a pigment in the hair that gets lost which causes the greying of hair. It is also hereditary and runs in the family and sometimes children as young as 13 or 14 have grey hair but there is nothing to worry about and unfortunately there is no treatment that can help people having grey hair.

People usually feel that oiling the hair is very beneficial and will greatly improve the quality of hair. While it is true that oil is a nourishment and it helps moisten the hair but before using oil it is necessary to check out the quality of your scalp. If it is a dry scalp then using oil will be beneficial but if it is an oily scalp then using oil can actually make it worse. Also in this cold weather he does not recommend keeping oil in the hair overnight as this may cause you to catch a cold. So it is better to leave the oil on the head for about an hour and then wash it off.

The white flakes on the head might not always be dandruff, it can be a fungal infection or even Seborrheic dermatitis where the oily glands in the scalp become hyperactive thus secreting excess oil because of which the pores get blocked causing scaling. So what appears to be dandruff is always not dandruff said Dr Batra.