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Common Bad Habits That Make You Lose More Hair

Common Bad Habits That Make You Lose More Hair

There are many reasons why your hair may be thinning. Thyroid problems and other hormonal imbalances can be the cause. Stress resulting from traumatic events like a divorce or health conditions like a pregnancy or a major surgery can result in severe hair loss.

But most of the time, it’s your lifestyle, your habits that make you lose more hair. Here are 7 of the most common ones:

1. Crash dieting

According to dermatologists, severe hair loss is one of the top symptoms in diagnosing anorexics. When the human body is starved of food, rather than making or maintaining its hair, it directs whatever little energy it has into the functioning of its most essential organs like the heart and the brain.

Since hair is primarily made of protein, a diet rich in lean protein like lentils, beans, fish, and chicken can help save your strands. About 25 to 30% of your total calories should be from the lean protein.

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2. Mishandling Wet Hair

Many of us comb our hair after a wash to detangle and smoothen out the tresses. But this often leads to breakage as wet hair is more fragile.

It’s best to let the hair dry before brushing it and even then, don’t brush it 100 times a day as advised by the older generations. Tugging at the hair so much will result in plenty of breakage. [1] If you do need to comb your wet hair, use a comb, not a brush and be as gentle as possible.

3. Wearing Tight Hairstyles

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    Tight hairstyles involving pulling your hair back into tight buns or a ponytail can damage your hair as these styles put excessive tension on the hair follicles. Constantly sporting such hairstyles can lead to alopecia, a medical condition where the hair follicles are permanently weakened and cannot grow [2].

    Wear your hair down whenever possible. When you do tie your hair, ensure it is not pulling on your scalp. Change your hairstyle occasionally and use fabric made bands for tying them. Never use rubber bands to tie your hair as they can cause breakage.

    4. Using hot styling tools

    The high heat from blow dryers and other hair styling equipment can lead to hair damage. Never use curling irons or straighteners on wet hair. The excessive heat on fragile wet hair leads to hair breakage and makes the scalp more prone to hair fall.

    It is best to limit the use of this equipment and allow your hair to air-dry as much as possible.

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    5. Taking oral birth control pills

    The wrong oral birth control can damage the hair of women who are sensitive to hair loss due to hormonal changes during menstruation. If you are an androgen-sensitive [3] person, birth control pills containing androgens can cause your hair to fall out.

    In such cases, you can switch to low-androgen index birth control pills. If you are doubtful, you can test for androgen sensitivity, all it takes is a quick cheek swab genetic test.

    6. Scratching the Head

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      If you suffer from dandruff, a lice infestation or an itchy scalp due to any other reason, the constant scratching to relieve the itch can cause cuticle damage which makes the hair fiber more prone to breakage.

      It’s better to relieve the itch with over-the-counter products like shampoos with zinc pyrithione, tea tree oil or selenium. Visit a dermatologist if the problem does not resolve, they may prescribe antifungal shampoo or cortisone foam to help with the itching.

      Reference

      [1] http://www.thejournal.ie/hair-brushing-100-strokes-985232-Jul2013/
      [2] http://www.techtimes.com/articles/155326/20160502/common-hairstyles-can-lead-to-alopecia-what-you-need-to-know-about-this-condition.htm
      [3] http://www.healthywomen.org/condition/androgen

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      Anju Mobin

      Anju is a Certified Nutritionist, and a Highly Experienced Health, Fitness and Nutrition Writer.

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      Last Updated on July 10, 2020

      How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

      How to Take Control of Your Life with Better Boundaries

      We all have them—those hurtful, frustrating, offensive, manipulative people in our lives. No matter how hard we try to surround ourselves with positive and kind people, there will always be those who will disrespect, insult, berate, and misuse you if we allow them to.

      We may, for a variety of reasons, not be able to avoid them, but we can determine how we interact with them and how we allow them to interact with us.

      So, how to take control of your life and stop being pushed around?

      Learning to set clear firm boundaries with the people in our lives at work and in our personal lives is the best way to protect ourselves from the negative effects of this kind of behavior.

      What Boundaries Are (And What They’re Not)

      Boundaries are limits

      —they are not threats or ultimatums. Boundaries inform or teach. They are not a form of punishment.

      Boundaries are firm lines—determined by you—which cannot be crossed by those around you. They are guidelines for how you will allow others to treat you and what kind of behaviors you will expect.

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      Healthy personal boundaries help protect you from physical or emotional pain. You may also need to set firm boundaries at work to ensure you and your time are not disrespected. Don’t allow others to take advantage of your kindness and generosity.

      Clear boundaries communicate to others that you demand respect and consideration—that you are willing to stand up for yourself and that you will not be a doormat for anyone. They are a “no trespassing” sign that makes it very clear when a line has been crossed and that there will be consequences for doing so.

      Boundaries are not set with the intention of changing other people. They may change how people interact with you, but they are more about enforcing your needs than attempting to change the general behavior and attitude of others.

      How to Establish Boundaries and Take Control of Your Life

      Here are some ways that you can establish boundaries and take control of your life.

      1. Self-Awareness Comes First

      Before you can establish boundaries with others, you first need to understand what your needs are.

      You are entitled to respect. You have the right to protect yourself from inappropriate or offensive behavior. Setting boundaries is a way of honoring your needs.

      To set appropriate boundaries, you need to be clear about what healthy behaviors look like—what healthy relationships look like.

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      You first have to become more aware of your feelings and honest with yourself about your expectations and what you feel is appropriate behavior:

      • Where do you need to establish better boundaries?
      • When do you feel disrespected?
      • When do you feel violated, frustrated, or angered by the behavior of others?
      • In what situations do you feel you are being mistreated or taken advantage of?
      • When do you want to be alone?
      • How much space do you need?

      You need to honor your own needs and boundaries before you can expect others to honor them. This allows you to take control of your life.

      2. Clear Communication Is Essential

      Inform others clearly and directly what your expectations are. It is essential to have clear communication if you want others to respect your boundaries. Explain in an honest and respectful tone what you find offensive or unacceptable.

      Many people simply aren’t aware that they are behaving inappropriately. They may never have been taught proper manners or consideration for others.

      3. Be Specific but Don’t Blame

      Taking a blaming or punishing attitude automatically puts people on the defensive. People will not listen when they feel attacked. It’s part of human nature.

      That said, you do not need to overexplain or defend yourself. Boundaries are not open to compromise.

      Sample language:

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      • “You may not…yell or raise your voice to me…”
      • “I need…to be treated with respect…”
      • “It’s not okay when…you take things from my desk without asking…”
      • “I won’t…do your work…cover for you anymore…”
      • “It’s not acceptable when…you ridicule or insult me…”
      • “I am uncomfortable when…you use offensive language”
      • “I will no longer be able to…lend you money…”

      Being able to communicate these without sounding accusatory is essential if you want others to respect your boundaries so you can take control of your life.

      4. Consequences Are Often Necessary

      Determine what the appropriate consequences will be when boundaries are crossed. If it’s appropriate, be clear about those consequences upfront when communicating those boundaries to others.

      Follow through. People won’t respect your boundaries if you don’t enforce them.

      Standing our ground and forcing consequences doesn’t come easily to us. We want to be nice. We want people to like us, but we shouldn’t have to trade our self-respect to gain friends or to achieve success.

      We may be tempted to let minor disrespect slide to avoid conflict, but as the familiar saying goes, “if you give people an inch, they’ll take a mile.”

      It’s much easier to address offensive or inappropriate behavior now than to wait until that behavior has gotten completely out of hand.

      It’s also important to remember that positive reinforcement is even more powerful than negative consequences. When people do alter the way they treat you, acknowledge it. Let people know that you notice and appreciate their efforts.

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      Final Thoughts

      Respect is always a valid reason for setting a boundary. Don’t defend yourself or your needs. Boundaries are often necessary to protect your time, your space, and your feelings. And these are essential if you want to take control of your life.

      Start with the easiest boundaries first. Setting boundaries is a skill that needs to be practiced. Enlist support from others if necessary. Inform people immediately when they have crossed the line.

      Don’t wait. Communicate politely and directly. Be clear about the consequences and follow them through.

      The better you become at setting your own boundaries, the better you become at recognizing and respecting the boundaries of others.

      Remember that establishing boundaries is your right. You are entitled to respect. You can’t control how other people behave, but you do have control over the way you allow people to treat you.

      Learning to set boundaries is not always easy, but with time, it will become more comfortable. You may eventually find that boundaries become automatic and you no longer need to consciously set them.

      They will simply become a natural extension of your self-respect.

      Featured photo credit: Thomas Kelley via unsplash.com

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