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Hair Loss in Children

Alopecia Hair Loss in Children

Hair loss in children, bald spots, or thin hair upset the child and the parent. However, hair loss in children is not rare in pediatric groups. But it is a common complaint in dermatology clinics. Kids suffering excessive hair falling out is much more common than most people suspect. However, kids’ hair loss has patterns that are different from that seen in adults. These include a chronic diffuse form of hair loss, Trichotillomania, and traction alopecia.

Hair loss in children may affect how they feel about themselves. The condition can affect a child’s self-confidence and limit them from many activities that children do. Catherine Wiley, M.D., of the Connecticut Children’s Medical Center, estimates that children’s hair loss is responsible for 3% of all pediatric office visits. Over 2 million children are suffering from medical hair loss, baldness, or thinning hair symptoms. Experts say that hair loss is devastating for young kids and grown children, with significant psychological consequences.

Hair Loss in Children & Dermatological symptoms

Dermatological symptoms example, Kids with tinea capitis develop patches of hair loss with black dots where the hair’s broken off. Their skin may turn red, scaly, and bumpy. According to the “Hair Loss in Children: Common and Uncommon Causes; Clinical and Epidemiological Study,” the most common symptoms of hair loss condition are:

  • Asymptomatic patchy hair loss (40%).
  • Scaly scalp (22.9%),
  • The chronic diffuse form of hair loss (21.4%),
  • Change in hair texture and color (8.1%)
  • Pruritus (5.7%)
  • Pain in the scalp (1%)
  • all the hair on the body falls out in case of alopecia Universalis

With children’s hair loss condition, in most cases, over 50% of them will see healthy hair growth with early treatments in less than a year. Other children with hair loss will need to try several medications that will be useful to resume healthy hair growth. Note that kids’ hair loss is not due to vitamin deficiencies, poor scalp circulation, headbands, or hats.

Medical Conditions Cause Hair Loss in Children.

List of illnesses that may cause hair fall in children

  • Scalp fungus infection ringworm called Tinea capitis spreads when kids share personal items such as combs and hats.
  • Telogen effluvium
  • Tinea capitis
  • Hair pulling called Trichotillomania
  • Traction alopecia
  • Alopecia areata, most cases occurs before the age of 30
  • Thyroid disorders
  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Autoimmune diseases such as systemic lupus
  • Body stress, physical or mental
  • Chemotherapy or radiation
  • Nutritional deficiency such as iron and zinc elements
  • Structural abnormalities of the hair shaft usually result in easy breakage and dry, brittle hair.

When to see a doctor

Hair loss is a medical problem, so it is crucial to see a medical health provider when a child loses more hair than usual. See your doctor if:

  • The child complains of an itchy or painful scalp.
  • The child loses eyebrows or eyelashes.
  • There are visible bald spots.
  • The child begins losing significantly more hair than they used to.
  • A child has hair loss following an illness or when taking a new medication.
  • The child has a scalp injury or burn.

Children with hair loss with significant bald spots showing may need psychological support. A therapist can help the child better manage feelings about hair loss.

How do doctors treat children with hair loss?

A doctor may prescribe antifungal cream for the scalp if the case is ringworm. There is no cure for alopecia areata, but some treatments may help manage symptoms. A doctor may prescribe drugs that might help stop the body from attacking hair follicles. Another prescription may include laser light therapy to stimulate hair growth. In many cases, the hair begins to fall out again after a child stops treatment, so a child may need to continue treatment even after symptoms disappear.

Resources:

Hair Loss in Children: Common and Uncommon Causes

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