Hair fall and Hair Growth: The complete guide


Of all the concerns people have about their appearance, their hair takes a front-row seat. One answer everyone has been on a quest for at least once in their life is ‘How to stop hair fall!’. If someone says they don’t care about their hair, they are lying!

So, we get why hair fall or hair loss, also known as alopecia, is one of the biggest concerns for everyone today worldwide.

The cycle of hair growth

Hair growth is understood to be a cycle, where ideally, it sees equal periods of growth followed by shedding. The scientific names given to the three cycles of growth are Anagen, Catagen, and Telogen.

  1. Anagen is the ‘phase of growth’ and spans for a few years ideally.
  2. The Catagen is the transition phase where hair follicles are known to shrink in size. This, however, is only supposed to be for a few weeks at a time.
  3. Following this, there is the Telogen phase, where the hair rests and ends with shedding.

Is hair fall normal?

Since the hair growth cycle phases end with shedding, hair fall is a normal part of the process. What is not so typical is the excessive hair fall experienced in one long period. The type of hair loss makes a difference too.

Reasons for excessive hair fall

There are many different reasons why we go through hair fall issues. Let’s have a look at some.

  • Hair loss can occur either due to a decreased growth rate or the breakage of hair shafts, as termed by dermatologists, each with its own extensive causes. 
  • Genetic factors, as well as natural ageing, can be the leading cause of hair fall. Dermatologists often diagnose hair fall by thoroughly analysing your genetic history, from your hair growth patterns to that of your parents and relatives.
  • Various deficiencies in our system are also known to cause hair loss.
  • For men, hair loss is more common and rampant, mainly due to male pattern baldness.
  • In Women, hormones and hormonal changes trigger excess sebum production in hair follicles, causing hair fall. Therefore, anytime between childbirth, pregnancy or even menopause, hair fall can be excessive for women.
  • There are medical conditions that can aggravate the stages of hair loss, namely alopecia and ringworm infections. Sometimes just experiencing a physically or mentally stressful event can mess up your hair growth cycle.
  • Too much of a good thing can be harmful, and nothing proves this more than the effect of over-consuming vitamin A based products. Too much vitamin A in the body causes hair fall.

Which deficiency causes Hair fall? 

While overconsumption has an adverse effect sometimes, often, a deficiency of any nutrient might have far more disastrous results.

  • Iron deficiency or anaemia affects hair growth as lesser oxygen is carried to the hair follicles. Without proper iron, the hair growth cycle is disrupted, causing follicles to rest and restrict growth.
  • Biotin (a form of vitamin B) deficiency shows up as brittle nails and hair fall. This is because biotin is responsible for creating amino acids in our system, which, when activated, help in the growth of both nails and hair.
  • Copper and zinc deficiencies are what in turn lead to other forms of deficiency, partly because copper helps absorb nutrients like iron that leads to better health in general.
  • It is a well-known fact that thyroid-related issues are one of the foremost causes of hair fall. So it only makes sense that the deficiency of nutrients like selenium, which has antioxidant properties needed to take care of thyroid functions, can cause hair loss.
  • Vitamins A, D, and E are generally needed in our system for healthy hair growth. They activate hair follicle stem cells (A) and are known for their antioxidant potency (E).
  • Fatty acids help improve the overall condition of hair follicles and growth, so their deficiency leaves your hair open to potential damage. 

6 Anti hair fall and hair growth tips 

While genetic conditions like balding cannot be prevented, average hair loss can be controlled to an extent by changing the way we do certain things.

  1. Avoiding tight braids and ponytails can significantly help in saving your hair and its thickness.
  1. Handle your hair with the utmost care. Especially while washing and brushing, a gentle hand can go a long way in avoiding breakage and hair fall.
  1. We all love perfectly styled hair, but reign it in for the sake of your hair health. The lesser you style, the lesser you lose.
  1. Protect your hair from the sun, and you will thank us later. Use a sun-protecting serum and protective clothing to reduce hair damage and hair fall.
  1. Be sure to check with your doctors before taking any medicine. It could have side effects that impair hair growth.
  1. Visiting a dermatologist is the best option to keep your hair safe and healthy.

How do seasonal changes influence hair growth or hair fall?

It is common knowledge that dryness, humidity, and sweat have an impact on the scalp. And these happen to be the main traits of winter, monsoon, and summer, respectively.

During each of these seasons, if your hair is not protected against these three conditions, there is bound to be hair fall.

  • Dryness of the scalp during winter may lead to itching and damage to the scalp. So oiling the hair and massaging the scalp is a sure way to reduce hair fall in winter.
  • In the monsoon, the humidity inevitably leads to near-constant dampness of the scalp, possibly leading to dandruff. And this causes excessive hair loss. This can be fixed with either medication or constant cleaning and keeping the scalp dry by avoiding hair products.
  • As for summer, the ideal solution to avoid the accumulation of sweat would be to consistently wash and dry your hair and follow a healthy diet.

The silver lining

It may seem like the end of the world, but there is a lot you can do to protect your hair. These hair growth tips apply to the general well-being of your hair, and by following these simple solutions, hair fall can be controlled to a great extent, and you can enjoy a head full of hair.


 1. What is hair made out of?

Many people are unaware that the strands of hair that you see are actually strands of dead cells, namely dead keratin cells. Keratin is the protein found in hair produced by hair follicles, so when it creates new cells, the dead cells are pushed out of the follicles.

 2. How do vitamin deficiencies affect hair fall?

The primary way all these deficiencies exhibit themselves is through telogen effluvium(TE), which is an imitation and excess action of the phase where the hair rests and fails to grow. They may also exhibit the signs of different autoimmune diseases. So a matter of hair loss can anytime deteriorate if not attended to by a professional.

3. Will fallen hair grow back?

When people ask this question, at this stage, the distinction must be made between hair fall and hair loss. Although they both result in a reduced amount of hair, hair fall is the more natural form of the two. This means that while hair loss due to regular hair fall has chances of growing back, those that are lost to hair loss triggered by certain conditions have lesser chances.

4. What are some ways to re-grow hair?

One such example would be scalp hair growth stimulating smoothies, but these are not vouched for and should not be tried before consulting a doctor.

Dermatologists and hair experts have surgical remedies for extreme cases of hair fall, which they won’t recommend for everyone complaining of hair loss.

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Picture of Dr Jisha Gomez

Dr Jisha Gomez

She is a highly skilled dermatology physician with strong expertise in improving skin & hair health through the development of corrective treatment combinations. She completed her Post-graduate Diploma in Dermatology from Cardiff, UK & Fellowship in Aesthetic Medicine (FAM) from the Institute of Laser and Aesthetic Medicine, Delhi with over 5+ years experience treating skin patients. She has worked in Government hospitals in Trivandrum and Bangalore. She is actively involved in creating awareness for healthy skin, breaking the social stigma based on skin colour & stopping steroid abuse in our country.