Most times, hair loss and hair breakage are thought to be the same thing, maybe because in both cases, hair falls off whether its a few strands or a hefty chunk but in one case, styling habits and hair care practices can cause it and the other case is caused by bigger issues.
In this post, we'll be discussing hair breakage
WHAT IS HAIR BREAKAGE?
Hair breakage happens when hair strand shreds. It can either be full hair shredding or even little pieces of hair. You might find some hair on your pillow case/bed sheet or on your comb.
So the hair cuticle is made up of a bunch of stacked layers like shingles on a roof and breakage occurs when the individual sheets of hair fibers split from the rest of the pile. It can either break off from the tips by itself when you have split ends and you don't trim or it can rip halfway up the strand or even close to the root.
Split ends can be easily spotted, as the individual hairs will be split and have a tree-like appearance. It can also come as knots on the individual strands.
Now, hair breakage is different from hair shedding. Shedding is a part of the hair cycle where you lose hair daily. However, when you begin to notice a lot of shedding, you'll need to visit your dermatologist for evaluation
Causes of Hair Breakage
Where and how hair breakage happens depends on several different factors.
- Combing your hair from root to tip aggressively (instead of combing from tip to root): Combing from the tip to the root helps loosen knots in your hair while combing it, instead of the comb getting stuck in your hair because you combed from the roots to the tip
- Sleeping without a satin bonnet or a satin pillowcase: Because of the friction that rough surfaces have when they come in contact with hair strands, breakage is inevitable.
- Constantly make hairstyles that pull your strands so tightly: Putting pressure on your hair strand can cause your hair roots to be inflammed which weaken your strands, and cause split ends and eventually breakage. It is important that you visit hair dressers that understand that your edges are more vulnerable to breaking off more than any other parts of the hair because of it's frailty
- Excessive heat styling: This can't be overemphasized, heat damages hair strands. as much as you can, reduce how you use heat on your hair.
- Itchy/Dry scalp: When you don't wash your hair for a while and/or you don't moisturize your hair as often as you should, you'll find that your scalp will be dry and it will begin to itch. Scratching an itchy scalp causes hair breakage near the root especially when the hair is dry too. The hair either breaks off completely immediately or eventually due to the damage that would have been caused
How to Remedy Hair Breakage.
- Understand why your hair started to break.
- Get a good trim (from a professional). This will help to even your hair out.
- With the understanding of why your hair started to break, work with your hair professional on a treatment plan.
How to Prevent Hair Breakage
- Moisturise your hair. This can't be over emphasized. Moisturized hair can't be dry and isn't prone to breakage.
- Trim your hair from time to time and if you notice split ends, get a trim immediately.
- Wear a satin bonnet when you go to bed. Satin pillowcases also work for this.
- If your hair isn't in a protective style, ensure that you twist it or braid it in sections before you sleep. This helps to cut down tangles which lead to breakage.
- . As much as possible, avoid the application of heat. Use a heat protectant and low heat setting if you must use heat styling tools.
* all pictures used were gotten from Pinterest.