The Truth About Your Thinning Hair

If you notice your hair isn't quite as thick and lustrous as it once was, you're not alone. According to trichologist Anabel Kingsley of the Philip Kingsley Clinic, around a third of all women will experience some amount of hair loss over their lifetime (via Cosmopolitan). For those who have experienced (or are currently dealing with) with thinning hair, it can be stressful, and at times, it can even be alarming. 

Not only are you likely to be seeing more strands of your hair on hairbrush than usual or more hair in the drain when showering, losing hair can even affect your mental health, leading you to feel insecure, anxious, or depressed. This is why it's so important to understand why your hair is falling out in order to combat it.

Kingsley believes the reason for hair thinning generally falls into two categories: genetics, meaning you were born with hair follicles that are likely to thin over time, and reactive, meaning something has triggered it. As Kingsley told Cosmopolitan, "Excessive daily hair shedding (which is know as telogen effluvium) is not reliant on having a genetic predisposition, it occurs as the result of an internal imbalance or upset, such as a nutritional deficiency, severe stress, crash dieting, or an illness."

Several factors can trigger hair thinning

"While our hair is incredibly important to us psychologically, physiologically it is non-essential; we could survive without it with no detriment to our physical health," Kingsley explains. "This means that any nutritional deficiency often first shows up in our hair." For this reason, Kingsley lists vitamin B12 deficiency, iron deficiency, and weight loss as common triggers for hair thinning. Other triggers include stress, hormones, thyroid disease (most commonly hypothyroidism), and age.

If you are experience hair thinning or loss, Kingsley recommends scheduling an appointment with your regular doctor or an endocrinologist to get to the root of the cause. Most of the time, all you need to do is make some changes to your diet, like adding more protein or carbs, and style your hair less to avoid adding any extra stress, but it could be something that needs some medical attention.