LOOKING AT HOW THE HAIR GROWS AND SHEDS NORMALLY IS IMPORTANT, AS MANY HAIR LOSS ISSUES ARE RELATED TO THE HAIR CYCLE.
The hair grows in a cycle of 3 main phases:
Anagen (growing – 2-6 years)
Catagen (transitional – 2 weeks)
Telogen (resting/shedding – 3-4 months)
Each hair grows independently to the next, with about 80-90% of hair growth, and 10% in the telogen phase at any given time. That equates to a normal scalp shedding about 100 hairs a day!
COMMON SCALP DISORDERS
Dandruff - Dandruff, put simply, is the hyper-production of skin cells often linked to P. Ovale Fungus. Skin cells are produced and shed too quickly which causes flakes of dead skin to fall off the scalp. Millions of Americans have this chronic disorder. The unmistakable symptoms of dandruff are white, oily-looking flakes of dead skin covering the hair and shoulders, and an itchy, scaly scalp.
Psoriasis - Psoriasis is a chronic (long lasting) skin and scalp disease of scaling and inflammation that affects an estimated 1 in 50 Americans with 150,000 new cases diagnosed each year. Psoriasis occurs when skin cells quickly multiply below the surface of the skin and accumulate on the surface before they have a chance to mature. Usually, skin cell turnover takes about a month, but with Psoriasis the process occurs in only a few days. Typical Psoriasis results in patches of thick red, inflamed skin covered with silvery scales referred to as plaques which usually itch and feel sore. Psoriasis is believed to be caused primarily by an immune system disorder, genetics, infections, stress, or medication.
Sebborheic Dermatitis - Oily scalps tend to suffer most from dandruff because an oily scalp supports the growth of yeast (P. Ovale Fungus). Seborrheic Dermatitis, or oily scalp, skin and hair is not just a problem during the teenage years. There has been a marked increase in excessive oily scalp in older men and women which is believed to be hormone-related, resulting in excessive sebum production.
Oily Scalp - Oily Scalp, also known as seborrhea, is characterized by a state of overly active sebaceous glands. This is contributed to by age, gender, and individual hormone levels.
Dry Scalp - Dry scalp, hair and skin is occasionally suffered by everyone. When there is not enough water in the scalps outer layer, the scalp becomes flaky, itchy and unsightly. Characterized by a tight feeling scalp and dry skin flakes falling from the scalp. The most common causes of dry scalp are climate, swimming pools, excessively hot water, genetics, sun exposure, and harsh shampoos that dissolve the natural sebum on the scalp and remove moisture.