Alcohol and hair loss

Can drinking alcohol cause hair loss?

I keep on writing about bad habits also in this post. This time I decided to have a closer look at the effects of consuming alcohol. Is there any relation between alcohol and hair loss?

Woman is drinking whiskey
Several medical conditions may be related to alcohol misuse. Is hair loss one them?

The short answer is yes. Keep on reading and learn more about the reasons.

I suppose we all know the two faces of drinking alcohol. It can be a special part of a wonderful meal or make you feel good going out with some friends. And it can also destroy lives. Drinking too much alcohol obviously have several negative effects. Drinking regularly makes it even more serious. But is there any relation with hair loss? Our human body is wonderful and it tries to compensate as long as it’s possible but anything that is wrong to your body may cause health issues sooner or later. Given the complexity of human body these problems can vary. Excessive alcohol use will not just make you sick the day after but may have an effect on your sleep, the vitamin levels in your body or even your blood sugar. And just one of these can be enough to face hair loss. So the answer is yes. Alcohol use can cause hair loss

The reasons why alcohol may cause hair loss:

  • Poor nutrition: Alcohol means empty calories. Usually the more you drink, the less you eat. It’s like cheating your body. You possibly don’t feel to be hungry. In the meantime you’re slowly running out of vitamins and minerals that are important for your health. It will effect your scalp and hair, too.
  • Inability to absorb the nutrients: Even if you do care about taking the necessary nutrients with a balanced diet, you may face with the lack of vitamins. The reason is in the stomach. Alcohol can make it more acidic by destroying the lining of it. In such a condition it’s more difficult to absorb nutrients in the proper way.
  • Dehydration: Not only vomiting can cause dehydration. When you consume alcohol your body will possibly lose more fluid because of the decreased amount of anti-diuretic hormone. It makes your body capable for reabsorbing water. You can do something to avoid it. Drink water along with alcohol to prevent dehydration and the hair loss, dry and brittle hair or dandruff which may come along with it.
  • Poor quality sleep: Maybe you doubt this point because drinking can make you fall asleep faster. Unfortunately it’s poor quality sleep because alcohol blocks REM sleep, which is said to be the most restorative type. Poor sleep means higher stress level very often and it can be a reason of hair loss, too.
  • The change in estrogen levels: Yes, alcohol may influence the level of the hormone that is related to hair growth (and many more). Too much of it can lead not only to hair problems but depression or putting on some weight.
    Changes in blood sugar: Depending on the amount of alcohol you consume, it can increase (less drink) or decrease (more drink) the blood sugar. Long term you run the risk of diabetes, because it can make insulin less effective. And what about hair? Your hair will possibly not get the necessary nutrients from your bloodstream.
A woman with a glass of alcohol.
Not only the adults are involved. In 2016, 23% of 15 year olds reported having been drunk in the last four weeks. (Source: https://alcoholchange.org.uk/alcohol-facts/fact-sheets/alcohol-statistics )

Why do we drink?

We all know the bad effects of drinking alcohol more or less. And we say that health is the most important. So why do we drink all the same? Normally drinking alcohol is not for a daily routine but something for special occasions or going out sometimes. But if you read a little more about the facts, you’ll find that „alcohol misuse is the biggest risk factor for death, ill-health and disability among 15-49 year-olds in the UK.” (Source: Alcohol Change UK, https://alcoholchange.org.uk/alcohol-facts/fact-sheets/alcohol-statistics , downloaded: 29.05.2019.)

I know there is not one single reason to drink alcohol in a higher volume. But I also know that in a balanced life there should be more than just work for someone else, then getting home exhausted. We all need happiness and joy but it seems that we have no time to enjoy our lives. We are struggling to meet the expectations and very often the life we live doesn’t make us happy at all. There are lucky persons for sure, who love their jobs, for example, and rather think about it just like a hobby. I also used to have a work what I loved and it was normal to still care about it after the end of the working day, or even the working week. Nevertheless, the most of us are waiting for the weekend already from Monday. Of course, work is not the most important part of our lives but definitely the one we spend the most time with. We spend more time with work than with our loved ones. That’s why it has a really huge effect on our mood and our behaviour. There can be situations when a person feels her life (together with her work) to be a trap. Longing for some change but strictly ruled by the things „she must do”, like work. When you only see tasks and problems to solve everywhere and every day, you may reach a point when you feel to be not enough to do it and you may get depressed. In such conditions it’s not seldom that people think or feel that alcohol is the only way to forget every days’ troubles. It’s really sad. It’s like escaping. It’s like searching for some moments with no stress, no expectations, no problems. Moments of ease. Easy to say, harder to make… but we all have to make some changes sometimes. Mainly if it has an effect on our health.

Instead of alcohol

It’s essential to have some rest after work or during the weekend. We all should have some time to forget problems and focus on enjoying the moment. There are several different ways to do that. Try to find yours. Some just want to spend more time with loved ones, others like to go out with friends. Maybe you prefer going on a short trip or just taking your guitar and get lost while playing your favourite songs at home. Read a new book or try a new sport. After an exhausting week it’s essential to enjoy yourself for your heart’s content and start the next week with new energy. We can agree about that. But unfortunately it’s another example for easy to say, harder to make. Most people have no time for themselves. The reason can be having too many things to arrange but sometimes a better time management could help.

Woman makes yoga on the beach.

What to do to prevent medical conditions (not limited only to hair loss) caused by alcohol?

I don’t think there could be a better advice than not to drink, or at least drink wisely. Keep an eye on how much and how often you drink and consume water as well. Have a balanced diet and nutritional supplements also, if necessary. It’s widely known that alcohol intake can damage liver. N-acetyl cysteine (NAC) is a supplement with a lot of benefits and easily available on the market. This is an amino acid that can be found also in foods, like chicken, cheese, seeds and more. It is takes a big part of detoxification of human body. Learn more also about alcohol units and stay in control.

   

I also have my own personal experience about a family member with such problems so I really could see how harmful can alcohol be to someone’s life and overall health. And when I say someone’s life, actually it’s the whole family’s life. That’s why I think it’s important to ask for a doctor’s advice and help as soon as possible. When I started to write this post I just wanted to know if alcohol could cause hair loss or not. Soon I knew the answer is yes. Nevertheless I had to go further a bit because of the fact that it has much more negative effects than hair loss. Something that can actually destroy lives and make future kind of impossible or at least really difficult for some. It’s never too late to make a change but we have to acknowledge sometimes that we really need some help to do that.

Writing this post I used information from following websites:

The Recovery Village: https://www.therecoveryvillage.com/alcohol-abuse/alcohol-and-hair-loss/#gref (29.05.2019.) 

National Sleep Foundation  https://www.sleepfoundation.org/articles/how-alcohol-affects-quality-and-quantity-sleep (28.05.2019.)

PubMed: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/30019966 (29.05.2019.)

Alcohol Change UK:  https://alcoholchange.org.uk/alcohol-facts/fact-sheets/alcohol-statistics (28.05.2019.)

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Going to bed late and hair loss

Does poor sleep effect hair loss?

Sleeping can define your day. After a bad sleep you can hardly think about anything else but going to bed again. It’s not only about being physically tired but concentration is also a hard task. As long as it’s about one night it will probably not cause you big problems but there are more and more people to suffer from regular sleeping problems. Long term it may effect your health. Because of the complexity of human body the problems can be really diversified. It’s something like dominoes. One problem can easily cause another. It means that poor sleep can influence even your hair. Things change as we get older. As a child we usually don’t like going to bed but I guess all adults would be happy to have at least a short nap time after work. Sleeping during the day can make you feel better but it’s not the equal to sleeping at night. The reason is sleep cycle.

A woman is sleeping in bed.
More and more people have problems about sleeping.

How many hours should we sleep?

There are countless articles on internet about this topic. That’s why I wouldn’t go too deep into this and I’d rather write about my own experience. Maybe you have similar ones. I think all of us is a little different. Also regarding how much sleep we need. As far as I see no articles can define one and only truth for all. It depends not only on age but working type and the working hours, too. It makes a difference if you have kids and even the actual season matters. 7-8 hours are said to be the best for adults generally. Is that okay for all of us? On the weekends I can afford getting up without an alarm clock. It happens quiet often to me to get up earlier than I wanted. And then I can decide… to wake up that early or sleep a little more. The strange thing is that if I choose to go back to bed (and make sure to sleep 8 hours), I feel really tired after getting up. If I take this early wake-up-thing as a sign and start my day a little earlier I have a lot of energy. And it still doesn’t make any difference about being an evening person. I’m still that kind. It’s like a misery to force myself to get up at 5am because of my phone alarm. But when it’s my body to wake up without any alarm, it seems that I’ve had enough sleep. Yes, even if it wasn’t 7-8 hours. Maybe you’ve also had such experience.

Working hours and poor sleep?

Yes, I do believe that there can be a relation. In the past I was working in different shifts so I could test what is better for me. To keep it short working in night shift is the worst thing. Everybody knows it but only if you have tried it, you know the real difference. I thought it would be great for me because I’m an evening person. I made it for a few years. As time went by enough sleeping was a non-existing category. It didn’t matter how long I slept, I was never ever relaxed. And it made me feel gloomy and did made signs on my appearance. On my skin and on my hair, too. Sleeping short or long… it was still poor sleep and I saw some relations between poor sleep and hair loss.

Woman in settee during daytime.
Nap time is great but sleeping only by day will probably not make you fully rested.

How can poor sleep cause hair loss?

It can have several negative effects on your health. But what’s this post got to do with hair care at all… you can ask. The answer is that some of these effects can influence your appearance. Your beauty and your hair, too. People who cannot have good sleep are often get too stressed, and sometimes depressed. In such a condition they can have poor appetite, as well. And because it’s like dominoes… poor appetite may lead to vitamin deficiency. Nutrients are necessary for overall health. Also for healthy and beautiful hair. Stress itself alone can cause hair loss. Click here to read more about hair loss and stress. The lack of vitamins and minerals can make the situation even worse. I would say that not poor sleep itself but its negative effects can create such conditions in which you may probably face the problem of hair loss.

Good sleep and noise?

Maybe I didn’t have up-to-date pieces of information before because I was really surprised when I read about people trying to fall asleep with noise. Of course it’s not just simple sound. It’s called white noise and it’s said to help about a better sleep for adults and children, too. It creates soothing sounds with static frequencies. Thanks to which you pay less attention to external sounds (like a barking dog). Nevertheless the story is not this simple because there are noise also with other colours, like pink, brown or grey. Special machines are available on the market to create these sounds in your bedroom. Offers have a wide price range as you can see:

And this is how white noise sounds:

If you are a person who prefers silence, you can make a try with a Himalayan salt lamp. Thanks to the negative ions that it releases, it can improve your sleep. Sleeping well and being relaxed or being exhausted all the time effect also other things in your life. It can be about some additional things regarding your life style. If you cannot have proper rest you will have no energy to make some sports, you will not longing for going outside and make a short trip for example. Maybe you won’t be in the mood to meet friends too often. And it’s not only about going to bed late, remember that sleeping too much can also be poor sleep. Try to know your body and find out what’s the best for you about sleeping habits. Search for methods of reducing stress and don’t hesitate to visit your doctor if you have such problems for a longer time.

Should you have any feedback or question feel free to use Your Beauty Hair’s contact form or email me at info@yourbeautyhair.co.uk.

The source of the embed video of white noise is You Tube. It was published by PyroFalkon’s Let’s Play Extravaganza on 26.07.2012. Downloaded on 21.04.2019.

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Bad habits as hair loss causes

Can smoking cause hair loss?

Usually we tend to say that our century has turned into a very bad road with a lot of bad habits to ruin our health and social life, too. From some point of view it may be true because everything has become much more easier to get. The market is full of awesome (and less awesome) offers to buy and try, available to most of us. Nevertheless I’m not sure about some of the bad habits. What about one of the biggest market, smoking? It has an effect on our health and beauty as well. I can’t say it’s a good effect. And actually smoking itself has a centuries-old history. Can it have a bad effect also on your hair? Is it a possible cause of hair loss?

Long-haired woman and smoke.
Smoking has its own history but it doesn’t make it a healthy habit.

  

History of smoking

Although Christopher Colombus is said to be the first European to smoke, America discovered it ages before. It’s thought that smoking was common in shamanistic rituals as early as 5000 BC. Carvings from around 900 AD shows that Mayan civilizations also smoked and even a Mayan pot was found in Guatemala in 2012. It was full of cigars. After hand-made cigarettes and pipes, rolled and boxed cigarettes became available only from the late 1800s when mass production started and generated a huge demand on the market. It was the most popular at the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century. While you can see terrible pictures about the effects of smoking on boxes today, it was something „cool” before. Advertised also by famous persons. By now it’s become acknowledged that smoking is harmful in several ways but let’s get back to hair care. Does it have any bad effect on hair? Is it a possible cause of hair loss?

Smoking and your body

All of us are aware of the biggest harm it may cause: it can seriously damage your lungs. You’ve possible faced its bad effects on skin, as well. In this post I’m gonna write about something else. This is the effect smoking can have on vitamins in your body. We can say that the human body creates itself time after time by building millions of cells. To do that it needs essential vitamins and minerals, too. Unfortunately free radicals are also generated in our bodies. By toxins. Not only because of bad habits, like smoking but also through some normal metabolic processes. These free radicals can damage healthy cells and vitamins are the key to protect us by neutralizing them. The sad thing is that when you smoke the production of free radicals are faster. It means that your body uses  – and needs – more vitamins.

  • After smoking just one cigarette you can say good-bye to almost half of the recommended daily doses of Vitamin C. To the vitamin that can strengthen your hair.
  • This bad habit may decrease also the levels of vitamin B what is essential for healthy scalp.
  • It can influence on the absorption of dietary iron. The essential mineral that can help to prevent hair loss.
  • Vitamin E is, the „beauty anti-oxidant” can help you to have beautiful and younger skin, of course… but it can do a lot also about neutralizing the toxins generated by smoking. The level of this vitamin may also be lower if you smoke.

Vegetables and fruits
You can have the best vitamins from food. Keep a balanced diet.

The relation between smoking and hair loss

Smoking effects your body’s abilty to absorb vitamins and minerals. So I think it’s just normal logic. You’re body needs sufficient nutrients to build healthy cells. Also for growing healthy hair. Smoking decrease the levels of vitamins while increase the production of free radicals that destroy cells. It sounds obvious that smoking can have a bad effect on your hair, too. Smoking may be a reason of hair loss by reducing the levels of vitamins and minerals.

In the other hand, even if we say that smoking can take part in hair loss, it doesn’t mean that the ones who doesn’t smoke never face this problem. Hair loss is a common problem among both genders, several ages. And it’s not that simple to find the real reason. It’s not something to find out in a post, not even on one single visit at the doctor. Genetics, some diseases, infections, some medicines, stress or incomplete nutrition all can be a possible reason. And smoking can make the situation even worse.

A hand refuses cigatettes from another hand.
Ask for help and quit smoking.

I know that quitting smoking is not easy and a lot of people claim that it makes them less stressed. It’s said that only 3 out of 100 persons can do that. Nevertheless it’s never too late to make another try and in the meantime you can focus on taking vitamins. Smokers are adviced to take higher amount of Vitamin C. A balanced diet is also important because it’s the best to get the vitamins and minerals from food.

Before taking extra amounts of any nutritional supplements, ask for advice from a doctor.

What other bad habits may cause you hair loss?

Writting this post I used following articles:

onlinedoctor.lloydspharmacy.com (11.03.2019.)

smokingpipes.com (12.03.2019.)

verywellmind.com (12.03.2019.)

 

 

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Winter hair care

Prevent winter hair problems


Since we’ve been over Halloween and have stepped into December everything is about Christmas. This is my favourite period during winter and I’m sure I’m not alone with this feeling. I can’t wait visiting Christmas markets with those wonderful lights and delicious foods and drinks. Nevertheless besides all the festive fun and preparations we have to remember that also our skin and hair need special care during the coldest season. We have to protect our hair and scalp from cold and its effects. Otherwise you can face one (or more) of the following hair problems:

  • Hair loss
  • Thinner hair
  • Oily hair
  • Dry, itchy scalp
  • Dandruff
  • Static hair
  • Split ends

Long-haired woman in the snow, wearing a hood.

 

Protect your hair from cold weather.

Hair loss and thinner hair is a typical problem because when the temperature is too low the circulatory system of our body gets less efficient. It means also hair follicles get less oxygen and nutrients. Using hot tools also matters a lot. I don’t really like using hair dryers so I usually just let my hair dry but in winter I often use it. And the result can be even more dry hair and split ends. For protection against cold the most of us choose to wear hats, while others prefer not to wear them because it can make hair oily. I don’t like feeling cold so I’m in the first type but I did experienced its bad effects as well. As far as I see it’s very important to choose the right hat. It is better to avoid too tight ones because they can reduce the airing of your hair and scalp. In my opinion the best decision is buying one that’s made of natural material. If you want to do more for the health and beauty of your hair think about nutrition and vitamins as well. Besides drinking less in winter we eat less vitamins, too. So it’s really important to have a balanced diet. Nutritional supplements can help you to provide the sufficient vitamins and hair masks can prevent split ends. Prevention is the main goal. When the ends are already split, only a hair cut helps.

Protect your hair from cold in winter.

Try to avoid using hot tools too often but still remember not to go to bed with wet hair. Hot tools can make your hair and scalp dry but you run the risk of scurfy scalp if you don’t let them dry before you go to sleep. And maybe it looks strange to put oily hair and dry hair in the same list but both of them is a real problem. Well, to share some experience of my own I used to face both problems in the same time. Given I wear hat when it’s too cold I have to shampoo more frequently because the roots get oily really soon. In the meantime the ends are dry and get brittle very easily because of the cold weather and less nutrients.  And about shampoo … rinsing with hot water can make your hair dry, too. So at the end of my hair wash procedure I rinse my hair with cooler water instead of too warm (just cooler but not cold because that can make hair static) and I decided to use hair masks only for the ends.

Can Vitamin D deficiency cause hair loss?

Winter hair care is not that simple but there are ways to cut bad effects of cold weather and keep your beautiful locks during winter. Don’t forget the right hat, a hair mask and a balanced diet.

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Season change and hair care

Hair problems in Autumn

Although I love summer there’s still something special about autumn for me. Just like about yesterday’s weather. It was raining in the little town I live, in the U.K. but the raindrops were so small like really tiny snowflakes. Like the ones you do believe that won’t ever make you soaked. Of course it will and whatever hairstyle you made in the morning you’ll see something totally different in the mirror after getting home. 😀 But this is just one side of autumn. You may face „autumn-challenges” because of stronger wind and damp weather. Another side is already having some hair damages because of summer. Let the reason be the high temperature, the pool or sea-water or using more styling products, your hair may need some extra care to prevent hair problems in autumn.

Hair care in autumn

It’s possible that you took a good care of your hair whole summer and it’s in perfect condition so you just need to keep the health and beauty of it. Or you may have some negative results of summer.

Let’s see what kind of hair problems you may face in autumn.

  • Damaged cuticle: During summer the protective layer of your hair often gets damaged. It’s because of the high temperature, the sun and yes, because of the sea as well. The result may be vulnerable hair with less shine getting tangled very easy.
  • Dry and brittle hair: If you cared more about having fun (which is essential on sparkling summer days) than protective hair care routine you possibly have dry hair and maybe scalp. The reason of dry hair may be because of the damaged cuticle. Dry scalp often gets worse as the temperature rises and you sweat intensively.
  • Dandruff: Sometimes dandruff is the reason of itchy scalp. Other times dandruff can be the result of itchy scalp because scratching too much may hurt the skin. Unfortunately there’s not a season when you are safe from dandruff because many things can lead to this problem. Hot temperatures and sweating too much is just a little part. Read more about dandruff reasons by clicking here.
  • Thinner or less hair: Yes, it can happen to lose more hair when summer ends than usual. They protect your scalp from UV radiation than they fall away. It is like a natural cycle of body so you don’t need to worry about it too much but need to accept that it’s a common hair problem in autumn.

Dry, brittle hair in autumn

What can you do to get back or keep the health and strength of your hair?

  • To get rid of hair problems in autumn you can start with hair trimming. It’s essential to cut split ends before the damage will get worse. It will make it also easier to grow your hair for autumn and winter if you like.
  • Given many of us want perfect pictures from holidays and use a lot of styling products for this purpose it’s a good idea to clear your hair and scalp to remove build-ups. Use a clarifying shampoo.
  • Choose hair care products with extra moisturizing ingredients and prefer natural components.
  • To fight against thinning hair you can provide extra care with special hair and scalp treatments like Philip Kingsley Tricho 7 Volumizing Hair And Scalp Treatment For Fine/Thinning Hair
  • Vitamin D is necessary to grow healthy hair but as summer goes by and days get shorter and shorter the level of this Vitamin drops. Now your diet is getting even more important in order to provide it in a sufficient amount. Fatty fish can help about it. Nevertheless during the colder seasons it possibly becomes necessary to take nutritional supplements.
  • Choose good quality styling products. They can help to prevent even more hair problems in autumn and also about fighting against fly-away hair.

As you have already experienced cold seasons may have negative effects not only on skin but hair and scalp, too. Clarifying and moisturizing is really important but there cannot be one good way of providing extra care for your head of hair because it’s essential to adjust it to your personal needs and to the state of your hair and scalp. You may need to make some changes in your hair care routine. As far as I see the necessary steps cannot be just listed and followed by every single person because of some possible differences regarding the hair damage or structure. I hope you have found your answers about hair problems in autumn. If not, or just want to give a feedback you can do it in comments, at info@yourbeautyhair.co.uk or use Your Beauty Hair’s contact form.

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