What Causes Hair Loss in Children?
For Children, Hair Loss is a distant future that’s seldom considered, and if ever it’s mentioned, it’s done with fear. That fear is mostly due to the lack of understanding of the cause of hair loss.
For older people, the hair follicle growth is slowly regressing or the hair produced is far more brittle than it used to be. It’s the natural course of the body. It weakens, and therefore, lessens hair production.
Hair Loss in Children Can Happen
Hair loss can also happen to Children. The fact that it’s not as familiar as old age hair loss might make it more unsettling for parent and kids alike. About 3 to 4 percent of Children in the US alone suffers from Hair Loss.
The causes are different, but the results are the same, losing of hair and bald spots on their heads like any normal adult hair loss.
The good news thought, with proper diagnosis and treatment Children’s Hair Loss can be remedied. Speaking of diagnosis, the cause of hair loss amongst children should be better understood so that proper treatment can be recommended
To better understand these causes, below are 10 most common causes of Children’s Hair Loss You might not be aware of.
Scalp Ringworm to most people, this fungal infection makes the kid’s scalp flaky. After awhile, the roundish flakes tear off, leaving a dark mark on the scalp.
What merits this infection a quick treatment is the fact that it’s contagious, so if your infected kid spends time with his friends.or siblings, there’s a likelihood that they’ll contract it too.
It can be transmitted through contact, like sleeping next to each other, or the use of their belongings, like a comb or hair tie.
When the hair follicle, that opening where your hair sprouts up, is damaged enough so that there is not space for new hair to grow back, you have cicatricial alopecia or scarring alopecia. This is often a complication of some other diseases, like lupus. Despite the studies, there’s very little known about how it actually happens and what triggers it.
Unlike other kinds of alopecia, this one won’t a.distinct symptom or look. The affected area can be smooth and clean, or may have redness, scaling. It may show increased or decreased pigmentation, or may have raised blisters with liquids or discharge coming from the affected area.
It really varies, so if you suspect your child is experiencing this condition, then it would be best to consult with a doctor.
Unlike the first two which are caused by external factors, the reason for this hair loss is the kid’s impulse. This is an obsessive-compulsive disorder which subject the kid to a grave desire to pull or tangle his hair.
Just because he’s the one doing it does not mean he wants to. He cannot stop the need to pluck his own hair out, sometimes intensified when he undergoes extreme stress or fear. This results in bald patches on his head.
Apart from the uncontrollable need to do such a thing, studies show that it’s also a form of self-harm.This is his relief in moments of distress. The stressor can be as simple as the fear of eating vegetables or as severe as facing a bully hurting him in school.
Commonly experienced by people from the ages of 15-29, this immune system-caused hair loss is a result of autoimmune conditions, like hyperthyroidism or Down’s Syndrome.
What happens is the immune system attacks the hair follicles. Apart from the roundish patches on the scalp, all you will notice is how loose the hairs are but there are no scales or swollen areas. The scalp is even described as slick and smooth, without much hair breakage.
You’ll observe that even the patches are minimal, although a lot of people.suffering from this conditioned mentioned that it is hard to grow body hair, if not impossible.
The good thing though is that this alopecia is not contagious and is often alleviated with a proper diet and less stress.
5. Telogen Effluvium
Instead of a permanent Hair Loss, what this does is lay the child’s hair growth dormant until what triggered the dormancy dissipates. The common triggers are either biological or environmental. For the former, it could be caused by surgery complications, sudden weight loss, anesthesia, traumatic injuries, excessive or long-term medication, vitamin A overdose or severe fever. The latter could because of emotional or psychological stress.
6. Bacterial Infections
Hair Loss is one of many complications, like skin and soft tissue infections, that bacteria exposure can do to your child. The bacteria causing this issues is a Staph aureaus. It can be contracted through an open cut or the respiratory tract, and it’s characterized by scaling.
This is worse for babies, people with diabetes, those suffering from vascular and lung diseases, cancer patients and most with a weak immune system.
For parents who consent or even suggest that their kids keep their buns and braids tight, you may want to reconsider. Because the hair is naturally delicate, it does not do well when with changes and processes people subject it to for aesthetic purposes.
From the heat of a curling or iron to the pull of a really tight high ponytail, they all do a lot of damage to your child’s hair. No.wonder this mostly happens to young girls.
What happens is the hair becomes prone to falling out and breaking. To remedy this, make sure to avoid or lessen excess processes you subject your kid’s hair to, else she may not have much hair left to beautify.
8. Alopecia Totalis
Like Alopecia Areata, this is also an autoimmune-caused hair loss, where the body’s immune system targets the hair follicles by mistake. It results to the child losing all his hair permanently. It’s a more advanced for of alopecia and is untreatable.
Doctors believe that this condition is genetic, but may be triggered or worsened by some other environmental factors.
9. Alopecia Universalis
Very similar to Alopecia Totalis, it is also an autoimmune-caused hair loss, where the body’s immune system targets the hair follicles by mistake.The only difference being that it also attacks the hair follicles of your child’s entire body, rendering him unable to grow any body hair.
Because it’s often observed on kids suffering other genetic autoimmune diseases, doctors believe that this type of hair loss is mostly genetic, but it would have to be triggered or made worse by something in the child’s environment or lifestyle.
10. Hair Shaft Trauma
What causes hair shaft trauma is an abrupt but consistent physical stress on the hair. It causes severe hair loss in children suffering from it. There are three common causes of this strain on a child’s hair: continuous and excessive tugging (like with tight hair styles or using too many hair bands), use of liquids and substances that smother the hair follicles or shaft and too much friction (like a baby scratching his head against the crib).
Because kids and babies do things with great repetition, pulling their own hair over and over again happens a lot. For some kids, this is their alternative to thumb-sucking. It would be best to make sure they don’t make a habit out of it.
I would like to share this video by richardfarrelvideos of a very touching story of a 3 year old girl who is suffering from alopecia. Please watch this and be inspired by her story.
As a parent or guardian of a child with alopecia, you have the responsibility to get them checked. There are different causes, as this article tackled, and the treatment is knowing that there’s something wrong and figuring out what it is.
Some of these causes can be treated with medication, therapy or both. Early diagnosis may spell the difference between a successful treatment and failure, and you have the opportunity to make that difference.
Your other job is one that you do anyway but will have to give more of after your child is diagnosed with alopecia, support.