Have you noticed some areas on your forehead, around the ears, or even at the nape of your neck are losing hair? This may be a cause for worry to be sure especially when it may be linked to hair loss, but what is causing it in the first place? Well, it is possible that you have traction alopecia.

What is Traction Alopecia?

If this is your first time to hear this term, it is a condition where hair loss is triggered by the hair being pulled tightly in one direction repeatedly. This condition is common in those who often wear dreadlocks, braids, or even ponytail. You can also expect this to happen when you wear tight headwear all the time. You see, when there is repeated straining on your hair follicles, your hair strands can get pulled out which can damage the follicles. When this happens, you can experience itching, redness, and even infections on the damaged area.

What Causes Traction Alopecia?

Not everyone is aware of this condition and only those who notice receding hairline, ulcers on the scalp, and even patches of shiny or scarred skin on the head start to wonder what is wrong with their hair. Well, there are several reasons why traction alopecia occurs. Here are a few that have been found to cause this hair problem.

Hair extensions

Extensions are nice on your hair but the way they are attached can cause problems on your hair and scalp. These extensions are often tied tightly or glued to the base of your hair which can cause tension at the roots of the hair.

Hair accessories

Another possible cause for traction alopecia is using hair accessories the same way, every day. These accessories can pull at your hair which can damage the roots of your hair and eventually cause hair loss or infection.

Headwear

If you often wear headbands, sports helmets, or any other type of headwear, chances are that your hair, where the headwear often settles around, will thin out. This can lead to traction alopecia.

Too long hair

Long hair does look good on you but its weight can actually cause pulling on your hair follicles which can lead to traction alopecia too. Even if you tie your hair up or braid it, it can lead to damage too.

Hair relaxers

Hair relaxers do help with making your hair soft and smooth but the chemicals present in them can lead to hair loss especially when you use them repeatedly.

Treating Traction Alopecia

The good news is that traction alopecia can actually be prevented or even cured with the following steps.

Loose braid

Braiding your hair can help keep your hair away from your face but keep it loose so as not to pull at your hair strands too hard. You will know if your braid is too tight when you turn your head left to right and you feel some pulling on your braid. If this happens, redo your braid until you feel comfortable with it.

Choose fabric hair bands

Not a fan of tying your hair? Fabric hair bands are much better options as they don’t cause friction on your hair unlike elastic hair bands that pull at the hair strands causing damage to the hair follicles. Make sure that you try it out first to see if you are comfortable with it and that there are no pulling happening on your hair. Go for the softest band to keep your hair safe while keeping it away from your face.

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