Struggling with Hair Loss? You’re Not Alone: Research Shows How Devastating Hair Loss Can Be

Every day, we encounter friends, family, coworkers and strangers on the street who have some degree of hair loss. We may just see it as part of their appearance, if we even notice it at all. So losing your hair is no big deal, right?

Not necessarily. The above scenario assumes that you’re not the one losing your hair. But if it is you, it doesn’t really matter what anyone else sees—you might feel like your vitality, or even part of your identity, is falling away along with your hair. Lest you think I am being melodramatic, consider the research.

The effects of hair loss are not a matter of vanity

A number of studies have shown that hair loss can have real and lasting negative psychological effects for some individuals. One of the most frequently cited is a 2013 study conducted by the Clinical Research Center for Hair and Skin Science in Berlin. Researchers determined that hair loss can have a real and “enormous emotional burden” that can lead to serious psychological disorders including acute anxiety and body dysmorphic disorder.

This is consistent with findings of previous studies, which showed that hair loss can have a wide-reaching and detrimental impact on quality of life, contributing to issues including marital distress, career problems, and depression. Understandably, these problems appear to be more severe in younger people and women suffering from hair loss; however, the psychological and emotional distress affects men too.

Hair loss has even been linked to degradation in physical health; one study showed female patients with androgenetic alopecia (female pattern baldness) were more likely to have issues with insulin resistance and blood sugar regulation than those with “normal” hair. And, as you may expect, the stress of these negative effects can make one prone to further hair loss.

Can hair restoration help?

All this may seem to paint a rather grim picture for hair loss sufferers, but there is a silver lining. Increased awareness of these very real health effects—combined with changing attitudes about having “elective” procedures and improved hair transplant technology—have made hair restoration treatments a truly viable option for more patients to restore thinning hair and improve their psychological wellbeing as a result.

There’s even scientific evidence that casual onlookers saw patients as younger, more attractive and more successful after undergoing hair transplants. While I believe the most important opinion of your appearance belongs to you, there’s no denying that how others perceive us can affect our lives.

Hair transplants have changed for the better

There was a time when you could spot hair transplants a mile away—either because they looked like rows of astroturf or you could see the long, linear scar in the back of a patient’s head. Thankfully, new technology called automated follicular unit extraction (FUE) has eliminated both of these problems. Automated FUE allows us to quickly remove individual hair follicle units using local anesthesia only, without a scalp incision or resultant scar, and place them exactly where we want them, in a natural-looking pattern to repopulate thinning areas.

The gold standard in automated FUE treatment is NeoGraft, which is safe and effective for restoring hair in both male and female patients—proof we’ve seen in our many happy NeoGraft patients at Anderson Sobel Cosmetic. You can learn more about the NeoGraft procedure here.

You don’t have to let hair loss hold you back

If you have gotten anything out of this post, I hope it is a reminder that negative emotional and psychological effects of hair loss are real and common—you’re certainly not alone if you feel distressed. I hope I’ve also given you reassurance that you have options to restore your hair if you wish to do so.

If you are bothered by hair loss and you are in the Bellevue area, I invite you to come in for a consultation to learn about NeoGraft and see if it is the right solution for you.

3 Comments Posted to "Struggling with Hair Loss? You’re Not Alone: Research Shows How Devastating Hair Loss Can Be"

  • January 16, 2019 at 11:52 pm • Posted by Jack | Reply

    It’s really nice seeing more articles pop up talking about this and how bad it can actually be for people going through it.

    I’m pretty young (22) and hair loss hit me like a truck around 9 months ago, it’s happening so fast and I just feel helpless. The age definitely makes things worse, it just doesn’t seem right to have this happening so young and because barely any of my friends are even close to losing their hair it naturally makes me feel inferior and that there’s something wrong with me. My face shape is completely different now and I’m completely unable to style my hair in a way that’s in any way complementary or to my liking, my hair “style” is only serving to cover up my receding temples which makes it impossible for me to enjoy what I’ve even got left (which is still quite a lot).

    In light of this, I’ve noticed that I’ve become extremely depressed. I’m talking weeks of not leaving the house, not looking in mirrors, not eating, oversleeping, avoiding contact with friends and any offers to socialise and just generally feeling like my life and world as I know it is over or coming to an end. Nothing is as fun anymore, it’s like my ability to be happy has become compromised.

    I feel totally unable to talk about it too, not because I’m ashamed that hair loss is happening but because people view it as such a ridiculously trivial thing if it ever comes up. The few people I’ve explained it to have just stared at me with a blank expression, they just don’t get it. No-one does until they go through it themselves I suppose. The general responses are usually; “It’s just hair”, “you’ll be fine”, “it’s not that bad” etc. which honestly only serve to make me feel worse about the whole thing. As I mentioned, it’s not the fact that I’m losing my hair that’s hitting me so hard. It’s the fact that despite no-one wants to lose their hair, as soon as it starts happening I’m expected not to care. I’m immediately supposed to “get over it”.

    If this is how hard it’s hitting me when “it’s not that bad”, I genuinely shudder to think how I’m going to be once this becomes noticeable or more serious.

  • November 17, 2018 at 3:52 am • Posted by Maria Vincent | Reply

    Thanks for your nice informative article. I really appreciate it. It quite inspiring and motivational. People those who are losing hair always in a pain. But if they read this article will get some confidence that they are not alone and also they get some nice solutions too.

  • November 6, 2018 at 4:30 am • Posted by alinoor | Reply

    an excellent post about one of the most severe problem..it is so painful to see hair loss problem in reality.

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