My hair is falling out!

What do I do?

I wash it regularly–once a day, or once every two days sometimes–and occasionally put some conditioner in it (not too much, or it makes my hair look greasy). So far I’ve gotten it streaked at least twice, but the shedding started way before I coloured it. I’m not a cancer patient or under a lot of stress, and this is kind of freaking me out.


How tightly do you pull it back? Do you go to bed with your hair down, or pulled back. Wearing your hair pulled tightly back can damage it, and causehair loss AFAIK. I may be mistaken, but last I knew it was recommended that you let your hair “rest” regularly and take it down for sleep.

Have you lost weight recently?

Are you losing it from all over your head, just on top or in spots?

I used to have really thick hair as a teenager and began losing it in my twenties. It started on top first. It’s never really gotten thin except when I had a very rapid weight loss. I used a liquid that is applied to the scalp with a dropper once or twice a day. (It didn’t mess up a hairdo.) There is one made for women and one made for men. I’m having a senior moment or I could tell you the name. It’s well known and you can find it at most supermarkets and drugstores. It takes a couple of months to start making a difference, but it works.

It is not for those who are losing hair just in spots. I used it only on the top of my head and only when my hair was getting really thin. The hair came back.

I will never have thick hair again though. (Age, hormones)

Zabali, I almost never put my hair back, and never when I’m sleeping (have you ever slept on a ponytail? ‘Uncomfortable’ doesn’t begin to describe it :smack: ;)) It’s about shoulder-length, so I can’t do much with it to begin with it. sigh

Zoe, I’ve been trying to lose weight for a while, but nothing really rapid–and the shedding keeps on whether I’m losing or gaining. I’m losing it from everywhere, really.

That liquid sounds like a great idea–I work in a drugstore, so I’ll ask around if anybody knows what it is. Thanks! :smiley:

I would recommend you go get some blood tests done first – to make sure you’re not anemic (perhaps from heavy periods), that you have enough iron on board (test your ferritin level, it should be at least 40), and make sure your thyroid is okay (test the TSH).

Like the other person said, it is important to make sure you don’t have bald spots 'coz they could be a fungal infection of your scalp, or alopecia.

If it’s hair loss from all over your scalp, see if it’s thinner on top and by the temples – that could be male pattern hair loss, which can also occur in women. For that, you’d have to get a prescription for minoxidal 2-5% lotion, used twice a day to rub into those areas.

However, keep in mind that everyone sheds at least 100 hairs a day.

What I find helped me is that “Mane 'n Tail” shampoo (which Jennifer Aniston also uses by the way!!!). You can get the human formulation at most drug stores.


If so, I’ve heard the one made for women and the one for men are exactly the same, but sometimes they charge more for the woman’s package. Something to look into.

manchugoo’s got some great tips, especially about checking with your doctor for a few simple blood tests. I know going to the doctor over hair loss seems silly, but it could be a sign of a more serious problem. Or not. But unless you go, you’ll never know. Anemia is very common in dieting women of menstruating age.

Make sure you’re getting enough healthy fats in your diet. When dieting, it’s easy to go too extreme with cutting fats. Any dog breeder will tell you the best way to improve a dog’s coat is to add a healthy oil to his food.

Once you figure out what (if anything) is wrong, I would recommend Nettles. Plain old stinging nettles. It can be steamed (steaming takes out the sting) or cooked like any greens - collard, kale, etc. It can be taken in freeze-dried capsules or made into tea or tincture. Take as much as you like. There’s no maximum dose, but Nettles have been shown to enhance the effect of diclofenac, so please seek the advice of a health provider if using diclofenac. Nettles are contraindicated in cases of fluid retention from decreased renal function and reduced cardiac function. Other than those rare cases, Nettles are safe for long-term use.

Also consider a good vitamin. Ask your doctor if you can take pre-natals for a few weeks, just to rebuild your stores, especially if you are anemic or borderline anemic (pre-natals usually have iron, unlike many mutli-vitamins)

Could be alopecia. Alopecia universalis is the complete loss of hair, but there are varying degrees of this disease.

Heh, yeah I sleep with my hair down myself, but I know people who pull it back into a braid or ponytail to sleep. I couldn’t do it, it wouldn’t stay in it’s tie most likely, and if it did, I’d have a headache. I’ve fallen asleep on the couch with a ponytail overnight while in school, and found this out the hard way.

I second the thyroid test. That was it was for me.

Are you on Depo-Provera, or any other kind of hormonal birth control (patch, Pill, etc?) These types of products do have hair loss as a side effect (IME, Depo in particular).

I know more that one person on Depo who started losing hair. A friend lost some all over, but there was also a prominent patch in front, I guess a little like male pattern baldness. It didn’t get too severe before she and close friends started to notice it (her hair is very thin naturally anyways) but her doctor told her not to renew the Depo and that pretty much fixed things right away (well, within the lifespan of the drug in her body, anyways). she is back on the Pill (allese 21), although the pills can sometimes have that effect as well.

If you are taking a hormonal contraceptive, cease taking it and see if that helps. Seeing a doctor might be a good idea too, but that’s at least one thing you can start investigating on your own.

Speaking for me,I’ve always “shedded” a lot, to the point where even hair dressers notice it. I dye my hair often, so that might be part of it, but as far as I remember, i’ve always lost a lot of hair. Perhaps more since my mid-late teenage years (i’m 24). If you’re still young, perhaps it’s normal?

Have you had surgery lately? General anesthesia can cause hair loss. If that’s not it, I second the possible low iron.