Hair has two parts. Shaft: which lies above the skin (the part that we see) Root: which lies within the skin (which we can not see). The root sits in a pit like recess called FOLLICLE. No new hair follicles are made after birth. There are two types of hair. Villous hair is almost invisible and has no color. It is typically seen on the forehead and bald area. Terminal hair usually has color and is coarse. It is thicker than villous hair. It is seen on the back of the head. Villous hair may become terminal e.g. in the beard area in the adolescent. Terminal hair becomes villous hair in baldness. Hair Cycle Everyday some hair fall out and some new ones grow. This is called a hair cycle. It’s a continuous process. Hair on the different areas of the body have different duration of these phases of the cycle. They grow at different rate on different areas of the body. It is when this cycle is broken, (less hair grown than fall out) you begin to see baldness. Hair Follicles are genetically programmed as to when they will fall out. Hair loss is continuous and progressive. Under normal circumstances hair growth in each hair root (follicle) occurs in cycle. Growing phase (Anagen) Falling out phase (Catagen) Resting phase (Telogen) About 1,00,000 hair cover the scalp. For the hair on the head the cycle is as follows. Anagen: 85-90% of the scalp hairs are in this phase and it lasts for approximately 6 years. Catagen: about 1% of scalp hairs are in this phase and it lasts for about 3 Weeks. Telogen: 10% of scalp hairs are in this phase and it lasts for about 3 months A new hair is made as the next hair cycle begins. Hair Loss - Causes Systematic Medical Problems:( Hypothyroidism, High fever, Pregnancy) Medications: (Anti cancer therapy) Alopecia Areta: (Patchy hair loss due to immune system disorder) Telogen Efflueum: (Diffuse loss of long hairs with roots Dermatological: (Skin) diseases. Diet: (Vitamin deficiency and toxicity). Chemical damage: (Bleaches, dyes, sprays, chlorine water, cosmetics) Mechanical damage: (Tight hair style, hot combs, hair dryers) Androgenetic alopecia: (male and female pattern baldness). The last one is the commonest cause of hair loss. Baldness This is a burning problem in today’s society. Hair follicles are genetically programmed as to when they will fall out. Hair loss is continuous and progressive. Medical term for common baldness is androgenetic alopecia. Means that it is resulting from two main factors Androgen Genetics Both of these factors are necessary to produce baldness. This can begin to develop after puberty, in both men and women. Age of onset can vary. The speed of progress of the baldness is also variable. Genetic inheritance can also come from either mother or father’s side of the family. It can also skip generations. (Father or uncle may not be bald) . It may be random in terms of affecting the sibling. (Brother or sister may not be bald). Normally, testosterone is converted into DHT by alpha 5 Reductase enzymes. DHT is responsible for prolonged catagen (Transitional or shedding or falling out ) phase. This altered hair cycle with shortened anagen phase and prolonged catagen phase leads to baldness. Here, you have to remember that there is something wrong with the seed, and not with the soil.