Can Dead Hair Follicles Be Restored?
A hair follicle is defined as a sheath of cells and connective tissue that surrounds the root of a hair. Hair grows from these follicles which are attached to oil glands that secrete a fatty substance called sebum. This sebum goes up the follicle to the scalp where it oils the skin and hair.
When hair follicles don’t get enough nutrients, they can thin and eventually this can lead to hair loss and baldness. This may be due to the resting phase in the hair cycle when new hair growth stops for a time. But if the follicles die then hair growth will stop completely.
Can dead hair follicles be restored? Find out more here…
Dead hair follicles or simply resting?
Hair grows from the follicle and is fed by blood vessels giving it the nourishment needed to grow. Between starting to grow and falling out hair goes through three stages:
- Anagen – the growing phase
- Catagen – the transition phase where the hair follicle decreases in size and detaches itself
- Telegon – this resting phase where hair sheds and makes way for a new hair shaft to form
The larger cycles that span the entire lifetime of a hair follicle cover:
- Lanugo hair – first hair produced on a foetus or newborn baby that disappears within a few weeks
- Vellus hair – known a speech fuzz and is finer and difficult to see
- Terminal hair – hormone-dependant hair that is present in the armpit, pubic, and chest hair, having a central spine that lets it grow longer
Destroying a hair follicle is caused by damage at the root where the blood supplies it with oxygen, combined with the absence of the stem cells responsible for hair follicle regeneration.
A dead hair follicle can’t grow hair. The lack of blood circulation worsens and quickens the hair loss resulting in a lack of nutrition and causing the follicle to die. If you have any hair or fluff on the affected areas this indicates that hair follicles are alive and you can act to achieve hair growth.
What affects the condition of hair follicles?
You can support your hair follicles by eating a balanced nutrient-rich diet, scalp massages, and stimulating blood flow to the hair follicles. Maintaining a healthy clean scalp free of inflammation and product build-up is also key.
If you’re suffering from a disease that takes nutrients from the scalp and sends them to vital organs or taking prescription drugs this can also have a negative effect.
Can dead hair follicles grow back?
There are treatments that can help to regrow dead hair follicles and these include:
- Minoxidil – this medication is applied regularly to the scalp to reactivate dormant hair follicles and would have to be taken indefinitely
- DHT blockers – excess dihydrotestosterone can block the flow of key hair nutrients, so combining this treatment with minerals and vitamins may kick-start hair growth
- New clinical trials – stimulating hair follicles by cutting the skin and artificially activating growth factors are currently underway
Bear in mind you should consult your doctor before undertaking any new regimen.
Treatments like these can work for some people but may have side effects and may not right for many people. Hair replacement London specialists from Cochrane & Co will give you all the help and support you need when you’re coping with hair loss whatever the cause and offer treatments that fit you and your lifestyle.