CHILDREN’s HAIR DISORDERS
Hair loss in children has different causes. The correct diagnosis is required for the good treatment. The following conditions in children may cause hair loss.
It is the ringworm infection of the scalp . The superficial infection of the skin of the scalp , eyebrows and eyelashes also attacks the hair shaft and hair follicles. This condition is considered as superficial mycosis or dermatophytosis. Tinea capitis is the one of the most common cause of the hair loss in children. The patchy hair loss with some broken off hairs just above the surface of the scalp is the typical feature. The hair loss patches are usually round or oval , but sometimes irregular. The looks broken right at the surface and appers little black dots on the scalp.
The typical appearance is the diagnostic clu clinically. A wood’s lamp test may be performed to confirm the presence of the fugus. No blood test , biopsy and scratching is needed for the diagnosis. The diagnosis is made clinically.
The sudden appearance of the round or oval patches of the hair loss is usually alopecia areata. These patches are hair less , smooth , scaling , no inflammatory signs . They appear literally overnight or sometimes over a few days. It is the imune system disorder which attacks the hair follicles. About 25% of these children will have also pitting and ridging of the nails.
Ayurveda is the best for children as well as for all ages for the treatment. With right treatment most of the patients will have all of their hairs back within a year. Many will have it sooner and about 5% of the patient with alopecia areata will go on progressing it as alopecia totalis and some may have alopecia universalis in which complete loss of hairs of the body.
The diagnosis is made clinically , generally no test are required for it. The scalp is the most affected area of alopecia areata but it may present all over the body. Hair pull test is to confirm the active lesion. If the lesion is active the hair comes out easily when you pull.TRAUMA
The trauma to the hair shaft or scalp is the another common cause of the hair loss in children. The traction , friction is the most common cause of the hair shaft trauma. The chemical burn is another cause. Trichotillomania is also considered as a trauma by some persons but it is wrong because it is habit of twirling or plucking the hair. Trichotillomania is the obsessive compulsive disorder that can be extremely difficult to treat since the patient usually feels compelled to pluck their hairs.TELOGEN EFFLUVIUM
An individual hair follicle has a long growth phase , producing steadily growing hair for 2 to 6 years on an average 3 years. This is followed by a brief transitional phase about 3 weeks , when the hair follicle degenerates. Then the turn of resting phase comes which is about 3 months when the hair follicles lie dormant. The last phase is called telogen phase. Following the telogen phase the growth phase begins again, the new hair grows and pushes out the old hair shafts. The cycle repeats like this. For most of the people 80 to 90 % of the follicles are in the growth phase , 5% are in the brief transition phase and 10 to 15 5 are in the telogen phase. Each day 50 to 150 hairs are shed and replaced by new hairs. In telogen effluvium , something happens to interrupt this normal life cycle and to throw many or all of the hairs into the telogen phase. Between 6 to 16 weeks later, partial or complete baldness appears.HAIR LOSS WITH CANCER
There are different causes of hair loss in this condition. Not all chemo medicines causes hair loss or thinning. But there is a hair fall in children who are receiving the chemotherapy. Because some anticancerous drugs are made to kill fast growing cells of the cancer. However certain normal cells like hair cells are also fast growing so the chemotherapy affects these cells too. In most of the cases hairs begins to grow back several months after the chemotherapy ends.