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Can Changes in the Weather Cause Hair Loss?

When you think of the weather, you may think of how the cold or hot makes you feel but you probably don’t associate it how it affects your hair and scalp. We often take measures to protect our hair from elements like the rain and wind for cosmetic reasons but certain weather conditions can affect our hair health. The hot and cold weather aren’t necessarily directly responsible for hair loss. That isn’t to say there aren’t some connections, but there are also seasonal habits that can cause our hair to break or fall out. Let’s take a look at some of the ways the weather can have an impact on our hair.

Can Cold Weather Cause Hair Loss?

When the temperatures outside gets below freezing, that alone will not cause your hair to become thin or fall out. In the winter we tend to wear hats for protection and warmth. Wearing a hat that is tight-fitting or pulls on the hair can cause your hair to weaken or fall out. This is known as traction alopecia. Women looking to protect their hair from the cold may put their hair into tight ponytails or buns causing the same result. This can cause a great deal of stress on hair follicles and hair loss (traction alopecia) can result from it. People who spend excessive time outdoors in the cold also can experience a dry scalp which can lead to hair loss. Because of the lack of moisture, the hair can become brittle.

The Effects of Hot Weather on Hair Loss

You may have heard that hair grows faster in the summer but this myth may be the opposite. Due to the heat, people tend to shed more quickly as a natural reaction. The excessive heat from the summer months can cause the hair to remain in the resting phase of the growth cycle longer than normal which will make your hair fall out at a faster rate. While we all lose around 100 strands a day, which is normal, some notice more hair falling out due to the prolonged telogen phase.

Seasonally Related Hair Loss: What Can Be Done?

Regardless of the season, you should always protect your scalp from the weather conditions. Seasonal hair loss may not always be prevented, but there are things you can do that help. When you wear a hat, make sure it fits loosely so it doesn’t damage the hair. In the summer, use hair products that contain SPF to keep the hair protected from the sun’s rays. Also being aware that chemicals in swimming pools can dry your hair and scalp.

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