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Four Things Your Hair Says About Your Health

by Alexandra Kilpatrick

Much like our nails, hair is an extension of our body that lends clues about our overall health. The Huffington Post recently explored four hair signs that something might be wrong with the overall health of your body.

Limp dry hair and hypothyroidism

If your once thick and lustrous hair has turned fine, limp and dry, first look toward any chemicals or minerals that could be damaging your hair. For example, have you swam in chlorinated water or died your hair recently? If so, these activities can cause your hair to dry and lose its luster. However, limp dry hair is also a sign of hypothyroidism, a condition in which your thyroid gland fails to produce enough hormones, slowing your metabolism.

Hypothyroidism also causes sudden weight gain, unexplained fatigue and a sense of feeling cold all the time. You should discuss testing your thyroid levels with your doctor if you suspect hypothyroidism to be the cause of your limp dry hair. If it turns out you do have an underactive thyroid, you can take medication to supplement your hormone levels.

Dandruff and psoriasis

Most cases of dandruff can be easily treated with an anti-dandruff shampoo. However, if your dandruff begins turning into thick scaly patches, you may have psoriasis, an autoimmune disease in which the skin goes into overdrive, speeding up the process of skin cell turnover. If you have another autoimmune condition like multiple sclerosis or Crohn’s disease, it increases the possibility that you’ll get psoriasis, so be cautious if you have another autoimmune disease.

Hair loss and stress, medical conditions or medications

The average person loses around 100 hairs per day. This normal amount of hair loss does not make your hair feel any thinner. If your hair does start to feel markedly thinner or come out in clumps, it may be a sign of a recent stressor like divorce or job loss. Hair loss can also be a sign of hypothyroidism or a hormonal imbalance related to polycystic ovarian syndrome like PCOS.

A few medications, including some birth control pills and antidepressants, can cause hair loss as a side effect. However, it’s best to consult with a doctor to verify that your medication is the cause of your hair loss and ask for an alternative before discontinuing your medication altogether.

Dry brittle hair and protein deficiency or thyroid issues

Dry, brittle hair that breaks easily could be a sign of a more serious health problem. Your hair consists of a protein called keratin and therefore, a lack of protein in your diet can weaken your hair. Dry brittle hair could also be a sign of a thyroid issue, so make sure to consult with your doctor if you think this might be the case.

If you or someone you know would like to learn more about hair loss and how to treat it, please feel free to schedule a consultation or contact one of our representatives today!

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