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Smoking Increase Risk for Hair Loss
For quite a very long period of time, people thought that hair loss was just a normal
part of aging. The truth is, although our crowning glory normally becomes thinner,
hair loss is not only caused by aging.
Based on some studies however, hair loss is prompted by other factors such as drugs,
medications, and some underlying diseases. Alopecia can also occur among people who
are genetically predisposed to be bald. Other factors such as psychological and physical
stresses can also promote the development of a hair loss condition. Based on the
results of a recent study conducted in Taiwan, smoking might also be another factor
that promotes hair loss among Asian men.
Androgenetic Alopecia May Be Caused by Smoking…
According to a report which appeared in the Archives of Dermatology, smoking might
be linked to the occurrence of age-related balding among Asian men. Researchers point
out that the most common form of alopecia that is associated with smoking is androgenetic
Androgentic alopecia, also known as “male pattern baldness”, is an androgen-dependent
hair loss condition that is hereditary. When a person has this hair loss condition,
the patient will observe “progressive thinning of the scalp hair defined by various
patterns". The usual signs include a receding hair line observed around the temples.
In most cases, such is also accompanied by an obvious balding at the top center of
Researchers point out that while androgenetic alopecia is generally a hereditary
disease, there are various factors in the environment that can also promote the occurrence
of this hair loss condition. They also explain that the onset of androgenetic alopecia
usually occurs when men reach their early 20s. In some cases, the hair loss may manifest
even during their teenage years.
Details of the Research…
The study was headed by Dr. Lin-Hui Su from the Far Eastern Memorial Hospital, and
Dr. Tony Hsiu-Hsi Chen from National Taiwan University. It involved 740 respondents
– all Taiwanese men - that had ages within the range of 40 to 91. The average age
of the respondents was 65 during the study.
During the course of the research, the researchers conducted an in-person interview.
The respondents were then examined and assessed by the researchers. Details about
their smoking activity and other risk factors that might have prompted the occurrence
of alopecia were examined. If the respondents were diagnosed with alopecia, the researchers
took note of the age when the onset of hair loss was observed. The researchers also
examined the degree of hair loss and vital statistics of the respondents. Blood samples
were also taken for assessment.
Based on the results of the study, “The men's risk for hair loss increased with advancing
age.” Furthermore, Dr. Su points out that "after controlling for age and family history,
statistically significant positive associations were noted between moderate or severe
androgenetic alopecia and smoking status, current cigarette smoking of 20 cigarettes
or more per day and smoking intensity”.
Dr Su and Dr Chen further explained that the link between smoking and hair loss might
be due to the fact that the habit might prompt the destruction of hair follicles.
In fact, there have been some studies which imply that smoking can potentially damage
the papilla. Such is responsible for circulating blood and hormones that promote
hair growth. The papilla is also responsible for increasing the production of estrogen,
which can then counter some hormonal effects of androgen.