It's been nearly two years since the Covid-19 virus was first detected in Wuhan, China. Since then, the virus has become a global pandemic with far-reaching impacts. Particularly concerning for both doctors and patients are the lingering long-term symptoms.
Common Post-Covid Symptoms
The medical community has identified a wide range of new or ongoing symptoms that can last for weeks or even months after being infected with the Covid-19 virus. Unlike the symptoms that tend to occur in people who have been severely ill from the virus, these symptoms are often found in those who have been seriously ill from Covid-19 and in people who had mild or no initial symptoms.
Some Covid-19 patients experience autoimmune conditions or multiorgan effects over a long period. Autoimmune disorders occur when your immune system mistakenly attacks healthy cells in your body. The immune system's attack can cause swelling, inflammation, or tissue damage to the affected part of the body. Multiorgan issues can affect many of the body's organs, including the heart, lung, kidney, skin, and brain functions.
Post-Pandemic Hair Loss
As Covid-19 spread, some patients started to notice that, in addition to the physical symptoms of the virus, they were suddenly experiencing thinning hair and hair loss. What began as a few patients suffering from hair loss soon grew into many people seeking answers and solutions to their unexplained hair loss. While some of these people had fallen ill from Covid-19, many others had never gotten the virus or had a mild case but were still experiencing hair loss. While many people could not understand why, the pandemic created near-perfect conditions for a mass hair loss event.
Thinning hair and hair loss has many causes, including chronic illness, nutritional deficiency, or genetics and can be permanent or temporary. The type of hair loss associated with Covid-19 and responsible for the dramatic increase in people experiencing thinning hair and hair loss is known as telogen effluvium. Telogen effluvium is a sudden hair loss condition that is caused by shock or excessive stress. The condition has several common causes, including medication, severe infections, high fevers, major illnesses, or severe psychological stress.
Losing a few hairs every day is a normal part of the hair growth cycle, with most people losing around 100 daily. The hair growth cycle consists of four stages. The resting phase of the cycle is called the telogen, or resting stage. During this phase, the hair stops growing but remains in place while new hair grows as a replacement. Usually, in two to three months, the new hair will dislodge the old and cause it to fall out.
Telogen effluvium is when stress interferes with the hair growth cycle and causes hair to enter the resting stage prematurely. Typically, about 10% to 15% of your hair is in the telogen stage at any time. However, any intense physical or emotional stress can cause up to 70% of your hair to enter the telogen stage.
As a result, thinning hair and hair loss are typically noticed several weeks to months after the triggering incident. However, this excessive hair shedding usually decreases after six to eight months once the triggering event is no longer present.
The Covid-19 pandemic produced stress and trauma at an astonishing rate. In addition to people who became infected with the virus, the pandemic has caused stress in people concerned about friends and family members that fell ill, as well as the increased stress of keeping yourself safe and healthy. While hair loss may not be an expected symptom of Covid-19, any illness or increase in stress can lead to telogen effluvium.
What Can You Do?
Thinning hair and hair loss are caused by a variety of factors. For example, your hair loss may be caused by Covid-19 or result from the stress caused by the pandemic. However, you must first determine the exact cause to find the best solution for your condition.
At New Image, we are experts in all types of thinning hair and hair loss conditions. Our team can help you to determine if Covid-19 or other factors are the cause of your thinning hair or hair loss. Contact us today to schedule your FREE initial consultation and learn more about how we can help you regrow your hair.