According to statistics, about 80% of people at least once in their life faced hair loss. Moreover, every year the number of men and women who need help from a trichologist is increasing. This is not surprising, considering the fact that hair is a sort of human health indicator. Bad ecological situation, stress, poor diet as well as pernicious habits often lead to malfunctions of the body.
The sooner a person suffering from hair loss goes to the doctor, the more effective the treatment will be. However, sometimes people refuse to see specialists thinking that their incipient baldness is just a natural process of losing a bit of hair. So how to determine whether this process is natural or pathological?
Throughout its life a hair follicle goes through several stages which are repeated in cycles:
– The anagen phase is the active growth phase of hair follicles which lasts for three years. The cells in the root of the hair are dividing rapidly, adding to the hair shaft.
-The catagen phase is a short transition stage that occurs at the end of the anagen phase. It signals the end of the active growth of a hair. This phase lasts for about 2-3 weeks.
-The telogen phase: the hair is released and the hair follicle rests for three months. The club hair falls out. After three months, the follicle goes back into anagen phase and begins to grow a new hair.
Typically, people lose 50 to 100 hairs per day. In other words, about 90% of hair follicles should be in anagen phase, 9% in catagen, and only 1% in telogen phase.
Alopecia is a pathological hair loss which leads to a noticeable thinning or complete baldness. In this case, more than 10% of hair follicles are in telogen and catagen phases.
Types and causes
Androgenetic (or pattern) alopecia is a genetically determined disorder which is caused by the impact of DHT (dihydrotestosterone) on the hair follicles. Androgenetic alopecia is the most common form of alopecia in men (in 95% of cases). The affected areas usually involve thinning hair at the frontal and parietal regions. Female pattern baldness is less common and is characterized by decrease in hair density in central scalp, with preservation of the frontal hairline.
Diffuse alopecia is a violation of the hair growth cycle usually caused by various diseases, hormonal imbalances, stress; it might occur after taking certain medications, rigid diet, as well as exposure to radiation, chemotherapy, etc. The process involves an increased rate of hair fall and subsequent thinning from all over the scalp. This type of alopecia is more common in women than men. The prevalence of diffuse hair loss is second only to androgenetic alopecia.
Alopecia areata, also known as spot baldness, occurs in 0.05-0.1% of the population. This type of baldness is an autoimmune disorder; hair follicles are not recognized by the body as its own cells. As a result, round and oval shaped bald spots appear on the scalp as well as the body. Quite often, alopecia areata causes pitting, splitting, lines, spots or other changes to the nails.
Scarring alopecia takes 1-2% of all types of hair loss. The main cause is follicle damage: follicles are replaced with scar tissue. This type of alopecia can occur due to infection, but most of the scars are formed as a result of injury, burns or scars after surgery. This is an irreversible form of alopecia.
Generally, hair loss problem can be effectively solved with the use of special medication, external remedies, physical therapy, as well as by changing daily routines and diets. However, in cases of scar alopecia or advanced stages of androgenic alopecia finding the solution is not so simple. In the first case, the scarred area completely prevents hair from growing; in the second situation the pores of the follicles will be covered with connective tissue within 10-12 years. In such situations, the treatment does not give the desired result; however, the problem of alopecia can be solved even in very complicated cases with the help of correction.
There are two types of correction: surgical (hair transplantation) and aesthetic (tricopigmentation). Besides, these two methods often complement each other, allowing specialists to achieve amazing results when being combined.
Tricopigmentation is a method of scalp dermapigmentation which creates the illusion of hair on thinning or bald areas. This technique has been popular since 2008 and has firmly taken its niche on the market. Variety of techniques allows specialists to disguise a receding hairline, visually increase the density of hair and hide the scars after transplantation of hair follicles, face lift or head injury. This type of correction is not contrary to the alopecia treatment; therefore, it can be used as a service for people going through the process of hair restoration after hair transplant.
It is important to mention that tricopigmentation is not exactly the same thing as permanent makeup. The skin on the head is thinner and drier than the skin on the face; it requires using special pigments and equipment. Thereby, a specialist in tricopigmentation should take a special course that covers all the specifics of the technique.
Nowadays, the tricopigmentation technique is recognized globally, especially in the field of hair restoration and surgery. It is in demand among customers who are attracted by the relatively low price, natural and predictable results, painless procedures and the absence of rehabilitation period. At the same time, there are not many specialists in tricopigmentation in the world, so the competition is still low.
Considering all the advantages of tricopigmentation, it becomes obvious that this technique is a real blessing for many people as it helps them to get their attractiveness and confidence back, whereas for artists it can be a lucrative way of self-realization, as well as an opportunity to help lots of people.
All the procedure photos for this article were provided by Agnieszka Zapała.