These popular hairstyles might be causing hair loss
As kids (and as parents of kids) the fear of head lice is real. As a result, we’re often told to keep hair tightly pulled back and discouraged from letting it flow freely. So after years of nit anxiety (yes, it’s a thing ok?), paired with dance recitals and swimming lessons, many of us have rocked the tightest buns known to man from a young age.
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Fast forward to our adult life and our love for a high pony or slicked back bun for a chic and quick hairstyle has too come to haunt us. It’s now time to face what dermatologist, Dr Lauren Knight, has called: ‘the truth behind the tight bun’.
Recalling her own experiences in an Instagram post where she distinctly remembers “the discomfort of a misplaced hairpin that had been jammed into my head to hold the bolla in place”, and a side of headache, Dr Knight has come to learn that our hair care and styling practices are in fact a common cause of hairloss.
“Traction alopecia is a type of hair loss that results from prolonged or repetitive tension on the scalp hair,” she says, referring to the common styling occurrence of a tight bun, ponytail, dreadlocks, braids and hair extensions.
While Dr Knight says it is reversible at first, eventually the damage can’t be undone.
The first warning signs of traction alopecia present themselves in the form of itching, redness andscaling, and overtime it can be seen as a receding frontal hairline, with only hairs in the original hairline left. She calls this the “fringe sign”.
To avoid this, Dr Knight recommends switching from tighter styles that cause tension on the scalp,to lower traction options.
And, despite our fears of head lice, leaving the hair natural and untied will give you time to recover from any previous damage.