What is traction alopecia?
Traction alopecia means hair loss caused by a pulling force. It occurs when the follicles are repeatedly placed under excessive tension. Unlike other types of alopecia, which are caused by auto-immune disorders and genetics, traction alopecia can be preventing by avoiding putting too much strain on the follicles.
Traction alopecia symptoms
Traction alopecia tends to develop quite slowly but there are usually early warning signs. Many sufferers report that they felt discomfort and sensitivity in their scalp before they noticed any thinning. Other red flags include headaches, irritated skin and small itchy lumps. The condition usually causes mild thinning at first and develops into larger bald patches if left untreated.
Preventing traction alopecia
Traction alopecia is most common amongst women with Afro hair who opt to wear braids or other tightly-fixed styles. However, it can develop in anyone who consistently uses styling techniques that puts their strands under stress – for instance, ballet dancers and sportspeople who wear a bun or ponytail while exercising. The most effective way to prevent traction alopecia is to opt for looser hairstyles. When braids, high ponytails, weaves or heavy extensions are worn, it is important to allow the follicles to rest regularly.
Treating traction alopecia
Vinci Hair Clinics, international experts in hair restoration, offer a selection of treatments for traction alopecia sufferers. The most appropriate course of care will depend on how advanced the condition is. At its early stages, traction alopecia can often be cured by changing styling habits. Hair regrowth can be supported with PRP Therapy, LLLT and Vinci’s Vitruvian Line vitamin and mineral supplement. When traction alopecia is more advanced, damage to the follicles may mean that it is impossible to regrow the hair. One option for such cases is hair transplant surgery, which rebuilds the bald areas with hair grafts harvested from elsewhere on the client’s head. A non-surgical alternative is Micro Scalp Pigmentation (MSP). For this treatment, pigments are applied to the scalp to disguise hair loss and create an effect of improved density.