Hair loss is a very common problem that affects both men and women, from all parts of the world. Men are more prone to hair loss, and with the onset of hair loss, some people tend to lose some self confidence. However if and when the causes of hair loss are understood, it is possible to handle the problem much more efficiently.

The most common type of hair loss is androgenic alopecia which is a gradual thinning of hair, which culminates in hair loss. Its extreme form is alopecia universalis where there is total hair loss over the body. Although it is normal to lose hair in old age, some men experience hair loss during puberty.

It is generally thought that hair loss is an inheritance from the maternal side; however chances of such an inheritance are 50%. The actual causes of hair loss are varied and may range from anything like exposure to chemicals, poisons and some medical treatments like chemotherapy. Stress is also another reason for hair loss which may include emotional trauma and depression.

Even the growth of tumors and other types of outgrowths in the skin lead to hair loss. An unhealthy diet and lifestyle also tends to provoke hair loss. This means that a person following a sedentary lifestyle with a high fat diet with high calorie intake can lead to early hair loss.

Some diseases have hair loss as one of their symptoms. Such hair loss is usually vastly different from the normal hair loss that is associated with aging and is seldom the first and only symptom of these diseases. Some diseases associated with hair loss are hypothyroidism, iron deficiency, seborrheic dermatitis and secondary syphilis. Once these diseases are treated, hair grows back to its normal style.

There are also two other types of hair loss patterns; traction alopecia and trichotillomania. In traction alopecia, hair loss is due to excessive and chronic pulling of the hair which is more prevalent in people who braid or knot their hair. This is why Sikh men experience such hair loss - their beard hair is pulled straight and twisted and tightly knotted. It is this daily knotting that leads to traction alopecia.

In the case of trichotillomania, it is the intentional pulling of healthy hair. This is usually a temporary, psychiatric or emotional problem. It is most prevalent in children where the pulling of strands of hair is associated with thumb sucking and other habits. offers information and support for people suffering from hair loss.

Chrisitan Nordqvist
Editor: Medical News Today