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Types of Alopecia. Which one do I have?

Types of Alopecia. Which one do I have?

16 May, 2022

Types of Alopecia. It is possible you have noticed yourself losing hair more than usual, followed with some research, and you are now wondering if it could be Alopecia. You’re probably on the right track – while the types of Alopecia aren’t the only cause of hair loss, but it’s definitely a big one.

To confirm with your view that you are suffering from Alopecia, we’ve broken down the many different forms this condition can take. (Be sure to check with a hair loss specialist before treating any hair loss.)

What is this condition called Alopecia?

Let’s start with the fundamentals. Alopecia is the medical term for hair loss on the scalp or body. It is a condition used to refer to many different types of hair loss. Here are the main ones –

Most common types of Alopecia in Australia

  1. Androgenic Alopecia

This is a big one. Androgenetic alopecia, also known as Male Pattern Baldness is the most common cause of hair loss worldwide. This type of hair loss follows a specific pattern starting with a receding hairline, then causing baldness on the top of the head. It usually doesn’t affect the hair on the back and sides of the head. 

What symptoms does Androgenic Alopecia have?

Thinning hair on top of the head, receding hairline, or both.

What prognosis does Androgenic Alopecia have?

Treatment can prevent the condition from getting worse.

What is the best treatment for Androgenic Alopecia?

Hair Transplant. There are some hair loss prevention treatments as well but hair transplant is the only permanent solution.

  1. Alopecia Areata

Compared to Androgenetic Alopecia, Alopecia Areata follows no predictable pattern. This type of hair loss causes hair to fall out in patches i.e. not just from your head but can also affect any hair on your body.

Alopecia areata is an autoimmune disease, which means that hair loss is caused by your immune system mistakenly attacking your hair follicles. Scientists can’t confirm why this happens, but the fact that Alopecia Areata sometimes affects family members suggests that genetics could be a risk factor. 

What symptoms does Alopecia Areata have?

Hair loss causes small patchy bald patches.

What prognosis does Alopecia Areata have?

There is no cure, but lost hair can regrow with treatment.

What is the best treatment for Alopecia Areata?

Minoxidil, oral immunosuppressants, topical corticosteroids, and corticosteroid injections, all of which reduce inflammation.

  1. Scarring Alopecia

 In this rare form of hair loss, also known as Cicatricial Alopecia, hair follicles on the scalp are destroyed by inflammation and replaced by scar tissue. Surprisingly, scar tissue forms just below the surface of the skin, meaning the only way to spot it is to look for missing patches of hair. Unfortunately, this form of hair loss is permanent and hair cannot grow back.

What symptoms does Scarring Alopecia have?

Hair loss, scarring under the skin’s surface.

What prognosis does Scarring Alopecia have?

Unfortunately, this type of hair loss cannot be reversed.

What is the best treatment for Scarring Alopecia?

Finasteride and Minoxidil can help undamaged hair grow and prevent further scarring.

  1. Postpartum Alopecia

Postpartum hair loss, also known as Telogen Effluvium, is a type of hair loss that generally affects women shortly after childbirth. It is also triggered by physical trauma, stress, extreme diets, nutritional deficiencies or other types of unexpected shock or changes like surgery. The good news is that this is temporary and usually improves on its own over the course of several months. It may take up to six months for hair to start growing back.

What symptoms does postpartum alopecia have?

Diffuse shedding that causes your hair to look thinner across your entire scalp

What prognosis does postpartum alopecia have?

There is no proven way to slow this hair loss and it usually returns to its normal rate after several months.

What is the best treatment for postpartum alopecia?

Ensure you don’t have any nutritional deficiencies that could accelerate hair loss.

  1. Traction Alopecia

This happens when you have your hair braided or other tight-fitting styles for so long that there is a permanent damaged.

Traction alopecia is a form of hair loss that’s caused by continuous pulling on the roots of your hair. It’s most common in people of African descent, especially amongst people who wear their hair in tight braids or other hairstyles that put pressure on the hair root. Don’t worry, you won’t get this if you braid your hair for specific occasions, but if you’re seeing your hairline recede, it may be time to consider an alternate hairstyle.

A similar condition is a bun hair loss, which is hair loss on the crown of the head due to the frequent tying of hair in a tight bun. As you can imagine, this usually happens to ballerinas.

What symptoms does traction alopecia have?

Receding hairline or hair loss at the temples

What prognosis does traction alopecia have?

Hair may regrow, but untreated Traction Alopecia can cause permanent damage.

What is the best treatment for traction alopecia?

Chronic traction alopecia is usually more difficult to treat. For some people, hair transplantation can be the solution. For others, Minoxidil may be effective.

As you can see, there are many different types of hair loss, but keep in mind that the most common is Androgenetic Alopecia, also known as Male Pattern Baldness. Do you think your hair loss could be a sign of Male Pattern Baldness? Evolved Clinics at Perth, Australia can help you get the correct diagnosis and put you on the path to effective treatment. Come, consult with us, for free.

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