The medical information provided in this site is for educational purposes only and is the property of the American Osteopathic College of Dermatology. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice and shall not create a physician - patient relationship. If you have a specific question or concern about a skin lesion or disease, please consult a dermatologist. Any use, re-creation, dissemination, forwarding or copying of this information is strictly prohibited unless expressed written permission is given by the American Osteopathic College of Dermatology.
You can be affected by a variety of medical conditions that can cause injury and destruction of hair follicles. Some of these conditions may be associated with symptoms such as itching or irritation or soreness, but with others you can lose hair and develop scarring without knowing that it is going on. Sometimes you will have a bald spot or area of hair loss detected by your hair stylist without your knowing that it was there. This condition has become more common over the past 10-15 years especially related to more frequent practices of using hair extensions and bonding glues on the scalp.
Losing one's hair can be a devastating experience, particularly because it develops suddenly and the loss is difficult to hide. Patients who have difficulty with the psychosocial impact of losing their hair should speak to a healthcare provider about their feelings. Providers can offer support and may recommend that a patient work with a therapist, clinical psychologist, or support group; individual and group therapy can help patients adjust and cope with hair loss, and may also provide tips on cosmetic coverings. In addition, patients can contact organizations such as the National Alopecia Areata Foundation ( ) and Alopecia UK ( ) for information on alopecia areata and support resources.