13 03 healthy hair shedding thicker hairFind out what’s normal in terms of hair shedding and how to save thinning strands.

Cleaning your shower drain may be the most disgusting part of home cleaning, but if stray hairs are found in other areas of the house – on your pillow, sofa and bathroom floor - you may have a bigger problem than Drainol can fix.

While we all experience hair shedding, losing between sixty to one hundred hairs per day, Trichologist Caroline Ruggiero of Capilia by Truly You Hair Solution Centre in Mississauga, says excessive shedding can be triggered by climate changes, stress, medication changes, certain health conditions, poor diet, and hormonal changes caused by pregnancy. Overuse of blow-dryers and flat-irons, which damage hair follicles, may also be a culprit.

Normal Hair Loss

Just as animals shed their fur in the spring and fall in response to climate changes, our hair follicles go through a normal process of hair loss during these seasons. “There are a couple of times a year, it doesn’t matter what’s going on in your life, you will lose a bit more hair than normal,” says Ruggiero.

However, it’s important to see a trichologist to determine if your shedding is simply a result of normal seasonal changes or a sign of a larger health problem. Excessive shedding may be caused by thyroid issues, diabetes, extreme weight loss, hormonal changes, or stress. A trichologist is a hair specialist that provides a detailed consultation to determine the root causes of hair loss. In addition to asking about your medical history and daily hygiene habits, they can perform a scalp analysis using a magnified camera.

“There are so many reasons for hair shedding and hair loss, so we have to go through a detailed consultation to identify the cause,” says Ruggiero.

Preventative Measures

Feeding your hair essential vitamins and minerals can help prevent excessive shedding. Ruggiero recommends the Canadian brand Térapo Médik (available at trichologist offices) and French brand René Furterer (available at select hair salons), which contain vitamin A, biotin, amino acids, zinc and copper that support hair health.

“In addition to supplementing your scalp with those vitamins, [they] also stimulate it,” says Ruggiero. Scalp stimulation is required to promote good circulation, allowing the blood to deliver nutrients to hair follicles.

“The better the circulation in the scalp, the more quickly those nutrients are going to get to the hair shaft to help the hair grow back,” says Ruggiero.

Scalp Therapy

In addition to feeding essential vitamins and minerals to your hair, Ruggiero also provides low-light laser therapy to strengthen the hair shaft and prevent breakage. Kits can be purchased for home use three times a week for 20 minutes, or can be done in a salon by a trichologist. “Lasers clean out the follicle funnel of bacteria and oil and improves circulation,” says Ruggiero. In order to be effective, the laser therapy must be done with scalp treatments. “If someone is doing laser treatments but is using Pantene Pro-V on their hair, the laser isn’t going to do much,” says Ruggiero. A non-residue shampoo with ingredients that stimulate the scalp is recommended during the treatment process.