Telogen Effluvium condition of hair loss is one of the commonest types of hair loss, as told by dermatologists. Alas, there is still little research available on this type of hair loss.
The word “effluvium” means “outflow.” Telogen is the resting stage in the hair growth cycle. If we decode the words “Telogen Effluvium,” they imply an outflow of telogen stage, meaning the resting stage has extended its limit.
At any point of time, healthy scalp of a human harbors 80-90 per cent of hair in their active or growing/anagen phase. The rest 10-20 per cent are in the telogen or resting phase.
When this 10-20 per cent increases, you start noticing an “outflow” of hair shedding. The severity of this hair loss depends on how much percent of hair have entered the abnormal telogen phase.
Telogen Effluvium condition of hair loss is fully reversible, say trichologists. In this condition, hair follicles are not damaged or shrunk. They have simply “decided” to stay in the resting phase for an abnormally long period. They are not producing any hair.
Through appropriate treatment, you can stimulate the follicles to become active again.
This could be a mental trauma, surgery, childbirth, abrupt weight loss, acute stress to the body or to the mind.
In these cases, follicles become dormant. This leads to profuse hair shedding. As a result, hair thin out. The shedding is noticeable a month or two after the shocking incident.
If the shock is short lived, then follicles return to normal within a few weeks or months. Usually, it takes about six months for follicles to restore their normal function. In case of childbirth, it could be a year.
However, if your hair loss continues for more than year, please see a hair expert.
In another case of Telogen Effluvium, hair follicles do not enter dormancy all of a sudden. This condition develops gradually and stays for longer. The follicles enter the telogen stage normally, but fail to come out of it. They stay in the telogen stage for longer than normal.
This leads to more shedding of hair and less production of new hair. Although you may not notice profuse shedding, but over time may notice thinning of your mane.
Prolonged stress can be a trigger for such type of follicle behavior.
In this case, the issue is not dormancy of follicles, but their truncated cycle. They produce finer and weaker hair. They look more like fibers than real hair. Gradually, your mane becomes thinner and finer. You may also experience persistent shedding of the thin fibers.
Telogen Effluvium does not make people go bald; but your mane may seriously thin out. In extreme cases, you may lose hair from eyebrows or the pubic region too.
According to hair experts, stress and diet are two powerful triggers of this kind of hair loss. So, in a way, this isn’t a condition that you cannot do anything about. Check your diet. Manage stress. This condition is reversible, say trichologists.