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Anemia and Hair Loss

Hair loss can be caused by a range of factors, many of which can be inherited genetically or affected by your diet. Anemia is a condition which, for some, can fall under both categories. Anemia occurs when the body fails to produce an adequate amount of red blood cells.

Healthy red blood cells carry oxygen from your lungs to keep the tissues in your body oxygenated and healthy. Hemoglobin is a protein found in red blood cells that specifically plays a large role in repairing and promoting healthy cell growth and regeneration. This diminished supply of hemoglobin, specifically, plays a large role in why anemic people experience hair loss or thinning.

According to information provided by the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, the following are healthy red blood cell count ranges, measured a million cells per microliter (mcL) :

  • Adult men: 4.7 to 6.1 million mcL
  • Non-pregnant adult women: 4.2 to 5.4 million mcL
  • Children: 4.0 to 5.5 million mcL

If your red blood cell count does not fall within the appropriate range, you may be considered anemic.

Who Becomes Anemic?

Anemia can occur for a variety of reasons. Genetically, some people are at greater risk of developing it. Women, for example, are far more likely to develop anemia than men, especially during pregnancy and menstruation. Lifestyle can also be to blame for developing anemia; those who are vegetarian, vegan, or donate blood frequently all have a higher chance of becoming anemic.

Depending on the type of anemia that you have, your symptoms will vary. The most common form of anemia is iron deficient anemia. Symptoms of this include general weakness, fatigue, paleness, dizziness, poor circulation, brittle nails, and in some rare cases, hair loss.

Treating Anemia and Hair Loss

If you suspect that your hair loss is the result of anemia, it’s important that you first discuss your health with a doctor. Sudden hair loss can be surprising and upsetting, but it’s most important to treat the underlying condition before addressing hair loss. Depending on the specifics of your condition, your doctor may recommend an iron-rich diet, supplements, or another course of treatment.

Many anemic people may be well-positioned to regrow the hair that they lost. In the event that regrowth is not a viable option, there are still options available. Through scalp micropigmentation, the team at Hairline Ink works to help clients rebuild their confidence by reversing the appearance of hair loss. To discuss the options that we can offer you, call us today at 585-250-0835.

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