Long-term stress encourages baldness
Why the hair suffers under stress
Available 24/7, overtime, sport, leisure-time stress – for many of us, a good reason to pull our hair out. Rings under the eyes, pale skin and fatigue are symptoms of stress that everybody is familiar with. However, many are unaware that stress also affects the hair and scalp, resulting in hair loss. But the relationship between stress and hair loss has long since been scientifically proven.
What happens when the roots of the hair are subjected to stress?
Scientists all over the world have been conducting research on this matter for some time. In studies, scientists have succeeded in exposing hair roots to natural stress caused by hormones produced naturally in the body. They observed that stress hormones affect the energy balance at the hair roots. If this process lasts for a long time – for example, during periods of long-term stress – there is a greater risk of increased hair loss leading to baldness.
What happens during phases of long-term stress?
The body reacts to periods of long-term high performance by releasing stress hormones. These hormones can suppress hunger for example, and change the body's energy balance, so that sufficient capacities are available for the required performance. In the beginning, the body's reaction is correct, but in the long term, it has a more negative effect. All other functions, even natural regeneration, are reduced to the absolute minimum, among other things the regenerative capacity of the hair roots.
Why does the hair suffer when we are under stress?
The initial impulse comes from the messenger compound, CRH (corticotropin-releasing hormone), which causes increased cortisol production. This, in turn, leads to an energy deficit that has a negative impact on the hair roots. As a result, the hair falls out faster. This interdependency was proven experimentally using a hair organ culture model. Even at low and specific concentrations of CRH, the growth phase of the hair roots was significantly reduced and the percentage of hair in the resting phase also increased. These are just the conditions that cause premature hair loss, provided that a genetic predisposition (androgenetic alopecia) exists.
Does caffeine help when there is long-term (hair) stress?
The Dr. Wolff research team is familiar with the problem of long-term stress, which has been researched several times in connection with Alpecin's caffeine-based active substance complex. The result is that even the addition of small quantities of caffeine can counteract the negative effects of CRH. Caffeine is also a proven active substance that stimulates the growth of the hair roots and can be used successfully to counteract the suppressive properties of the male sex hormone, testosterone, and the stress hormone, CRH.