Hello Friends, today we will talk about Causes
of Hair Loss in Children. Symptoms of Childhood Illnesses. Causes of Hair Loss in Children. Hair loss is a scary and frustrating
symptom for parents, especially since youdon’t really expect kids to lose their hair. Unfortunately, hair loss is a common symptom,
even in kids. In many cases, the hair loss is temporary,
and the child’s hair does grow back. Hair Loss. One of the classic causes of hair loss in
children that many people think about is hairloss associated with childhood cancer. Although this can definitely cause hair loss,
it is usually the cancer treatments, suchas chemotherapy or radiation ,
that causes the hair loss and not cancer itself. Telogen effluvium is another classic cause
of hair loss in children, but this conditionis often poorly understood by parents. Children with telogen effluvium have often
had a recent illness, typically with a highfever, surgery, sudden weight loss, or even
an emotional stress, and then suddenly losea lot of hair about six weeks to three months
later. Children with telogen effluvium continue to
lose hair, often in large clumps for a fewweeks or months, to the point that their hair
may be noticeably thin. But then their hair begins to grow again in
about six months without any treatments. It is thought that this hair loss occurs because
the original stressor pushes the child’s hairinto a resting or dormant phase, instead of
its more usual long growth phase. It then falls out until new hair grows and
then follows the normal growth phases forhair. Causes of Hair Loss
Other common causes of hair loss in childrenand teens include:
• Ringworm of the scalp is one of the more common causes of hair loss
but is often easy to recognize because ofthe association scalp findings, including
a red circular lesion, hair loss, and a scalyborder that may be itchy. Scalp ringworm signs and symptoms can be subtler,
with no scaling or itching, and broken hairsinstead of hair loss . • Bacterial infections can cause some hair
loss that appears similar to tinea capitiswith scaling. But instead of being caused by ringworm, it
is often caused by the Staph aureaus bacteria. • Traction alopecia is common in kids who
wear tight braids or ponytails and in newbornsand infants who lose hair on the back of their
head from rubbing it against their crib. • Hair pulling or stroking can be a habit
for infants and toddlers, just like thumbsucking, sucking on a pacifier, or rubbing
a blanket. It usually stops when kids are around two
or three years old, just like thumb sucking,although some continue pulling until they
are three to five years old. Although you can ignore this habit, since
it does sometimes cause some hair loss, youcould keep your child’s hair cut short or
try to move her to one of those other habitsif it bothers you. • Trichotillomania is thought to be related
to obsessive-compulsive disorder and is definedas a child or teen who compulsively pulls
out her hair, feels tension before pullingor when trying to resist pulling, and feels
pleasure, gratification, or relief when pullingher hair out. These children have noticeable hair loss and
often need treatment from a child psychiatristand/or child psychologist who specializes
in trichotillomania. • Alopecia areata is thought to be an autoimmune
disorder that causes complete hair
loss in round or oval patches on a child’sscalp or another body part. Unlike ringworm, the scalp involved in the
round patches of alopecia areata is completelysmooth, without redness or scale. Treatments include steroid injections and
some topical medications . Fortunately, hair growth often eventually
occurs on its own, too. • Alopecia totalis and alopecia universalis
are similar to alopecia areata, except thatthe child loses all scalp hair
or all scalp hair and all body hair . The chances for treatment success and hair
regrowth are less for alopecia totalis andalopecia universalis than they are for alopecia
areata. A pediatric dermatologist can help treat your
child with any of these disorders. In addition to the treatments already mentioned
for alopecia areata, other treatments mightinclude ultraviolet light therapy ,
oral steroids, or oral cyclosporine. A high-quality wig is sometimes the best treatment
for alopecia areata and alopecia totalis. Other Causes of Hair Loss. In addition to ringworm, hair pulling, traction
alopecia, and the other causes of hair lossmentioned above, other less common causes
of hair loss can include:• Thyroid disorders, including either hypothyroidism
and hyperthyroidism• Illnesses, such as systemic lupus erythematosus,
diabetes mellitus, or iron-deficiency anemia• Malnutrition
• Vitamin A toxicityYou would usually expect your child to have
other symptoms besides hair loss if he hadany of these disorders. For example, vitamin A toxicity also causes
headaches, vision changes, irritability, vomiting,and poor weight gain, etc. Hair loss can also be caused by structural
abnormalities of the hair shaft, which usuallyresults in easy breakage and dry, brittle
hair. A pediatric dermatologist can usually identify
this kind of abnormality by looking at thehairs under a microscope. Help for Hair Loss in Children
A visit to your pediatrician is likely yourbest first step if your child is losing her
hair. She will likely be able to diagnose and treat
common causes of hair loss, such as ringworm,traction alopecia, and telogen effluvium. For other conditions, including trichotillomania
and alopecia areata, your pediatrician willlikely refer you to a specialist for further
treatment. If you have some other tips, please do share
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