Medications are supposed to help us treat health conditions, but they can also lead to some unwanted side effects. One specific side effect we are going to highlight today is hair loss. We will look into medications that are known to cause hair loss and alternative options if you are a victim.
Pills can interfere with normal scalp activity and lead to hair thinning and balding hair.. There are two ways that medications and products affect our hair:
- Telogen Effluvium: a form of temporary and short term hair loss, is the most common form of hair loss due to medications. The hair loss starts two – four months after taking the drug and is caused when hair follicles go into the resting phase too early. Telogen effluvium results in 30 – 70% more hair loss than the average human. Luckily in most cases, new growth will still continue after the medication is gone from the bloodstream
- Anagen Effluvium: a form of long term hair loss caused by interruption of the growth phase. It occurs within a few days or weeks of taking medication and is most common with chemo patients. It results in thinning or loss of body hair, such as eyelashes, eyebrows, etc. Anagen effluvium can be hard to reverse, but there are treatments to help cover up hair loss.
Medications That Cause Hair Loss:
- Acne Medications
- Vitamin A
- Antidepressant Pills
- Birth Control Pills
- Anti Clotting Pills
- Cholesterol Lowering Pills
- Suppress Immune System Pills
- Cancer Treatment Pills
- Epilepsy Drugs
- High Blood Pressure Pills
- Hormone Replacement Therapy Pills
- Mood Stabilizer Pills
- Parkinson’s Disease Pills
- Thyroid Pills
- Weight Loss Pills
First you should start by talking to your doctor. Luckily there are some natural alternatives to take. For example, whole vitamins, aromatherapy, and natural oils can be used in replacement of most medications. But in some cases your shampoo might be to blame, not your medications. Shampoo can cause scalp irritation and result in hair thinning or excessive shed. Our everyday hair products contain chemicals that are contributing to hair loss.
Chemicals in Your Hair Products That Can Cause Hair Loss:
Sodium Lauryl Sulfate or SLS
SLS is a detergent and surfactant used as an inexpensive foaming agent. It harshly strips away dirt and oil on our hair. It is more generally used as paint remover and dishwasher detergent. Furthermore, it damages our hair by breaking down proteins and natural oils causing dryness and breakage.
Parabens are a chemical preservative. They are super irritating and cause allergic reactions, interrupt our hormones, even cause mood swings.
Propylene Glycol is a synthetic compound that retains moisture. This is commonly found in conditioner, but also causes skin irritation and even organ toxicity.
Diethanolamine or DEA
DEA is a wetting agent in shampoos and conditioners to help lather. DEA also promotes cancer, liver damage and skin abnormalities.
Fragrance is that amazing smell your shampoo or conditioner leaves. Unfortunately, it can mess with estrogen and testosterone levels which can result in hair loss. Also, you can be allergic to specific fragrances and break out in a rash.
Imidazolidinyl Urea is an antimicrobial preservative that protects products from spoilage. It inhibits growth and reproduction, cause allergic reactions, and form blisters. This product is also used in funeral homes and links to cancer.
Sodium Chloride, also known as salt, helps to thicken hair products. Although it is natural, it causes dryness that can lead to breakage.
What You Can Do
Now that you are educated, here are some ways to avoid or cover up your hair loss. First start off by switching over to natural supplements and natural hair products. This will help to prevent future hair loss. For immediate and permanent results, consider scalp micropigmentation. This is a minimally invasive procedure to cover up hair loss. It involves placing pigment into the scalp to give the appearance of hair. Also, we offer eyebrow micropigmentation for those looking to enhance and define their brows.