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How to Prevent Hair Loss and Damage


One of your biggest fears as you get older might be hair loss or a head of damaged hair. The medical term for hair loss, which occurs when something stops your hair from growing, is Anagen effluvium. Hair loss can occur for a number of reasons, from genetics, a poor diet, stress, or a medication condition. Hair damage can be caused by drastic hair treatment and poor hair care. In most cases, both issues can be addressed and prevented with the right method.

Adjusting Your Hair Care



Talk to your hair stylist about hair treatments and styling that won’t damage your hair. Hair treatments that use chemicals, like hair color, bleach, straightening, or perms, can cause hair damage that makes your hair break or fall off temporarily.[2]

  • Another type of hair damage and hair loss that can result from hair styling is wearing your hair in a style that pulls too tightly on your hair. This is called traction alopecia. This issue can permanently damage the your hair follicles if you wear a style, like a very tight ponytail or braids, that pulls on your hair for a long period of time. Loosen up any tight hair styles and avoid wearing your hair in a tight hair style all day long. Pain is a sign of too much traction on your hair, which can lead to hair loss.[3]
  • Weaves and extensions can lead to similar hair damage.
  • Over-brushing your hair can weaken and damage your hair. Over- or roughly brushing wet hair especially can cause breakage.



Use shampoo and conditioner that is formulated for your hair type. If you color your hair, you should use shampoo designed for color-treated hair. If your hair is chemically treated or suffering from damage, consider a “2-in-1” shampoo.[4]

  • Keep in mind that regardless of cost, many shampoo and conditioner brands provide the same benefits. Don’t feel like you have to splurge to get a good shampoo and conditioner. It’s more important to use a shampoo and conditioner that are made for your hair type than the cost of the hair products.
  • There is no scientific proof that hair products advertising hair loss prevention or the regrowth of hair actually work. So be wary of these products.[5]
  • Some hair care professionals recommend using baby shampoo, as it is mild on hair.[6]
  • If you’re unsure which shampoo or conditioner is best for your hair, consult your stylist or dermatologist.



Wash your hair with a gentle shampoo and conditioner every other day. Wash daily if you have very oily hair. Though you may think that not washing your hair will slow hair loss, in fact it might speed it up. This is because your hair follicles can’t function properly when they are blocked with yeast, microbes, and sebum.



Work the shampoo onto your scalp when you wash your hair. Focus on cleaning your scalp, rather than washing the entire length of your hair. Washing only your hair can create flyaway hair that is dull and coarse. It also makes your hair more prone to breakage and falling out.[8]



Apply conditioner after every shampoo. You don’t need to use conditioner if you use a “2-in-1” shampoo, which cleans and conditions hair with only one product. Conditioner can significantly improve the look of damaged or weathered hair. It increases shine, reduces static on your hair, and improves your hair’s strength.



Only put conditioner on the ends of your hair. Because conditioners can make fine hair look limp, or weigh down your hair, only use it on the tips of your hair. Do not apply it to your scalp or the length of your hair.[10]

  • You should also avoid rubbing your hair too hard with a towel after a shower as this can lead to breakage and damage. Try instead to “scrunch” your wet hair with the towel.



Skip blowdrying and straightening your hair. Let your hair air dry to avoid pulling on your hair while blowdrying or straightening it. If you can’t live without your blow out, use the blowdryer on a low-heat setting and don’t pull at any tangles in your hair. Use a thin comb to lightly pull tangles apart.[11]



Style your hair when it’s dry. Styling your hair when it’s wet can cause it to stretch and break. So braid it or twist your hair when it’s dry or damp.[12]

  • Avoid teasing or backcombing your hair as these styles can cause hair damage.



Reduce the chemicals you use on your hair. If you have gotten into the habit of coloring your hair once a month or applying chemical treatments to your hair, ease off on these chemicals. You shouldn’t get a chemical treatment done on your hair too often, as they can damage and weaken your hair follicles, leading to breakage and hair loss.[13]

  • Try to avoid products that promise “long-lasting hold,” as these often cause damage to your hair.



Protect your hair when you go swimming. It’s important to protect your hair from the damaging effects of chlorine in pools. Wet and condition your hair before you go swimming. Wear a tight-fitting swim cap when you go for a swim.[14]

  • You should also use a specially formulated swimmers shampoo and deep conditioner after you go swimming to replace lost moisture on your scalp and hair.


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