Hair Loss/Massive hair shedding
I am an 18 year old male. Recently, over the last few months I have been noticing major hair shedding. I am not entirely sure what the cause may be, but ever since I noticed it, I have been worrying nonstop.
Back in December, I noticed that my hair was beginning to shed much more than usual, with 20 hairs easily being pulled out while combing. I had very long hair at the time too (maybe 6-8 inches long) so it was quite noticeable. I always wondered if it had to due with me shampooing less, because my hair was always a mess when it was wet and took forever to dry. For comfort reasons I reduced shampooing a lot. (I moved to a tropical country 8 years ago, shampooing always made my head feel cleaner).
Afterwards I got my hair cut (cutting the back and sides quite short, but leaving the hair on time at least three inches long). The problem seemed to go away. I also started to improve my diet somewhat, which had been quite poor. I gave up drinking Cola soda for the most part and started drinking quite a bit of water. I also cut down on the fast food. My hair seemed to stop shedding for the most part.
A few weeks later though I noticed my hair started to shed a bit more again. It was more noticeable as my hair had started to grow longer again.
This isn't the first time I noticed hair coming out this much. I noticed the same phenomenon last year also around Nov.-Dec. However, I related it to dandruff and an irritated scalp, perhaps caused by the dry weather at that time of year (almost no humidity, in contrast to what it is like almost all year long), shampooed more thoroughly with conditioner, and the problem faded away by February.
Overall, I am entirely sure I lose less than 100 strands a day. I usually have only up to ten hair on my pillow in the morning, and I generally only lose hair when combing. My hair is black, and overall it is somewhat curly during the rainy season. However, due to the short dry season, it has straigtened up much more. It is also considerably oily, with my hair strands "clustering" together and also when wet.
Family history wise, my father's family all have full heads of hair. My mother's father did suffer MPB and several of her maternal cousins as well, though not all. Interestingly, those that did suffer hair loss suffered from very poor nutrition during their childhood (they are from a Central American country).
My father is still quite fine and is almost 50. My mother loses some hair, but overall she seems to not be suffering any form of female pattern hair loss.
My primary worry stems from the fact that my little brother and father don't seem to lose strands of hair (though they both have quite short hair). I am also obsessing about this hair whorl on my head and I am not sure if it is thinning. I have two whorls, actually, right next to each other in the same direction according to friends, making it seem bigger than a usual whorl.
The only ideas I do have for me shedding as much as I do are the following:
- I have been having a hard time at school, being under much stress due to social isolation and trying to maintain the grades I need to go to an Ivy League school. I often had anxiety attacks due to worrying so much.
- I do suffer from depression, and before I changed my diet, I had started eating a lot less.
- I also have a case of OCD, which leads to more anxiety and stress, and it has been quite bad lately. I don't take meds due to the fact that my body reacts poorly to them.
- Hormonal changes.
- Perhaps I notice more hair because I shampoo less.
- I have had an irritated scalp the last few months. It has quite itchy, is red in certain areas; I feel little "bumps" on top that usually are lumps of skin or even small pimples. (One even oozed puss, which frightened me). I also have a serious case of dandruff that coincides with both times this has happened.
- Perhaps I am suffering some form of MPB. Still, my temples are quite fine. My hairline hasn't seem to changed much from when I was a child. My crown, from what I can tell, seems to be alright. Perhaps there is some thinning, but it is quite minimal if that is the case. No one I know has pointed anything out ever, and I just started taking pictures out of curiosity.
All in all, I do know I am worrying too much, and I think this may have even exasperated the shedding. Nevertheless, I just want to try to obtain an answer.
Thank you so much for your time and patience. It is so much appreciated.
Stress and Diet can play major roles in contributing to excessive hair loss. Daily Exercise and scalp massages (be careful NOT to rub and break off hairs) can help as well as daily vitamins. You should shampoo regularly with hot water and rinse well, do NOT use a conditioner as you have oily scalp and hair and try not to use any leave in styling products. This regimen will help to clear up your scalp and pimples/itching. Find a Dandruff shampoo that you like and helps you. Maybe a Selenium Sulfoxide based one? 100 hairs a day is not very excessive ........have you checked your Thyroid?
I hope this helps and Good Luck!