Avoiding Hair Damages
Our hair is under attack continuously, not only from chemicals and elements but also us, the sole owner. We may unintentionally torture our hair into submission, which in long term the damage can’t be easily undone. There are things that can make our hair cry uncle and we should take steps to negate those damages. Unfortunately, new hairs are growing each day, which mean with the right attitude, we can start anew; as another chance of making peace with your hair, if you did so many wrong things previously. It means, you have the opportunity to replace damaged hairs with the fresh ones. However, it will take some time and you need to be patient as our hair grows at about half an inch each month.
In the meantime, you shouldn’t do anything that can disrupt the natural growing process of your hair. For example, improper use of hair setting agents or permanent dye can ruin your effort really quickly. Often it takes a few months (for men) or one year (for women) to completely replace damaged hairs.
You should be aware that your hair is often finer on the thinning area, it also tend to grow much more slowly. If you notice the onset of baldness on your crown areas, you should take necessary steps before the damages spread and your hair disappear permanently. Unfortunately, many people make things worse by dyeing their thinning hair to make it looks better. Aggressive dyeing only helps to finish off your dying hair follicles.
These are a few dastardly things we do to our hair in a regular basis:
• Using blow-dryer: Inside the cortex, there are air pockets that can give your hair some extra bounce. These pockets have natural moisture in them and blow-drying your hair at high temperature can heat up the pocket and in some cases cause the hair to crack. So, using moderate temperature is necessary to limit damages while allowing you to dry your hair relatively quickly.
• Using hot rollers: These curl-makers can be destructive to your hair due to direct heat application on the hair.
• Direct sunlight exposure: Heat can gradually dry up your hair, causing the same effect of blow-dryer, but at a slower rate. High amount of ultraviolet light can damage the disulphide bonds in your hair significantly.
• Rubbing your hair with towel too hard: Vigorous rubbing will cause friction and pulling action, which mean you can have mechanical damages on your hair shafts.
• Using dull scissors: They can easily split the cuticle apart and the broken hair may slowly peel down the shaft of your hair.
• Back brushing: Hair can be considered as a single structure that runs from the tip of the strand right down to the end of the follicle. If you comb your hair against the scales, it is possible irreversibly break the hair by damaging the shaft. Normal hair should have smooth and glossy cuticle cells, which give it luster and shine. Back brushing can change the characteristics of your cuticle.
• Using metal comb: Metal combs create much more friction than plastic combs and are usually a better choice. Brushing or combing your hair while it is wet can damage the shaft, however, a proper use of conditioner can help detangling it and allowing your comb to easily pass through without tugging on anything. When combing, it is a good idea to start from the tip of your hair down to the scalp, by lightly holding the end of your hair.
• Perming: It is designed to soften the scales, to allow the water to be absorbed and the hair can be more easily reshaped. Perming too often or leaving the solution too long can damage your hair shaft permanently.
• Coloring and bleaching: They can damage your cuticle and make the hair shaft more porous, as the result the hair may absorb too much moisture and make it weaker.
• Using rubber bands: They can cause mechanical traction on your hair shaft, which is also called traction alopecia.
• Using hair sprays: These substances coat your cuticle and make the hair shaft more porous. You hair can bind to each other, which pull at the contact point. The resulting traction may eventually cause the hair cuticle to fracture, exposing the vulnerable cortex to the environment and chemicals.
You should be sure that you choose water-soluble hair-sprays and wash your hair every day. This will wash away the chemicals, eliminating the bond and spare your hair from a gloomy fate. Having a bad hair day is not the reason to torture your hair, bad hair day can happen when your hair has lower static electricity than usual, which is often caused by weather conditions. It is not your fault and obviously, your hair is also innocent. You should avoid subjecting your hair to damages that can be caused by a number of “treatments”, also proper washing and conditioning can help your hair significantly. If you do something wrong and your cortex is damaged, your only opportunity to fix it, is to cut your hair to remove the damaged portion. Damaged hair often feels rough and appears dull, without the usual silky feel. Luckily, our body can repair itself and the hair will grow, ask your stylist to do the proper cutting.
Maintaining a Healthy Scalp
It is a common misconception that baldness is related to scalp problem. But this is not true, because your hair grows from under the scalp, and the scalp itself won’t affect hair loss. Hair loss often happens due to genetic factors, especially on male, this problem is further complicated by the fact that blood flow will drop due to the lack of hair on a specific area of the scalp. Following hair transplantation, the circulation will improve as the growing hair needs nutrients and oxygen. Hair consultant usually asks their clients to use conditioner after washing their hair with shampoo. It will ensure that the scalp is well taken care of and moist. These are negative factors that can adversely affect your scalp:
• Smoking: Smokers tend to have worse scalp condition, it means each cigarette can contribute over time to hair loss. Many health professionals believe the connection, although there is still no definitive scientific evidence.
• Sun exposure: Too much sun exposure on scalp can also affect hair components underneath the scalp, which disrupt the hair producing process. Therefore, people with genetic baldness are advised to cover their head during outdoor activities.
• Skin cancer: There are three types of skin cancers. The first two are dangerous (squamous cell cancers and malignant melanomas). They tend to appear on areas that are often exposed to direct sunlight. Skin cancer can spread rapidly to other areas of the body. The third type of cancer is called basal cell, which usually takes form as ulcers and can grow to a significant size. On people with thinning hair, the scalp is more exposed to the effect of ultraviolet light which make cancer more likely to happen. Hair can also protect the hair from direct sunlight and create enough shades.
• Various dermatologic conditions: There are many unique conditions that can affect your scalp and skin.
• Folliculitis: It is basically hair follicle infection: It may appear as reddish bump or acne and often treated with medicinal soaps, antibiotics and in more severe cases, minor surgery. Because it can be uncomfortable or itchy, people often scratch or pick it, making permanent scarring and spread more likely to happen. It often does not cause permanent hair loss, but can be problematic if it affects a large number of follicles, as hair can enter the “telogen” (sleep) phase prematurely.
• Salt water and chlorine: It is advisable to shampoo and condition your hair after swim on the beach or in the swimming pool. This will prevent scalp damages and wash away traces of chlorine and heavy salt. High salt content can make our scalp drier.
You may think that dandruff is another risk factor of balding, but this is not the case. However, tingling and itchy sensation of the scalp, as reported by many people, can be a sign of an impending balding process.