October 22, 2018 2 min read

In the last decade there has been many studies outlining all the negative effects smoking has on your body, but does smoking cause hair loss and why? Smoking can cause heart disease, cancer, respiratory illnesses and many more. Keep reading to learn the reasons why smoking causes hair loss and how to reduce hair loss from smoking.

Why does Smoking cause hair loss?

  • Smoking decreases circulation, which can impair blood flow to the follicles, thus altering hair growth patterns. Adequate blood flow is essential for delivering important nutrients to the hair follicles for proper hair growth.
  • Smoking disrupts the body’s endocrine system, which in turn can raise levels of DHT, the hormone responsible for male pattern baldness; this can cause hair follicles to shrink until they can no longer product hair.
  • Cigarettes cause the skin to age prematurely, including hair follicles. This accelerates age-related hair loss.
  • Toxins in cigarettes can damage the DNA of hair follicles. Cigarette smoke contains over 4,000 chemicals, including toxic compounds like ammonia, formaldehyde, arsenic, and acetone. It’s thought that free radicals from the chemicals can alter the DNA of hair follicles, causing them to function incorrectly.
  • Cigarette smoking can damage your immune system, which can lead to diseases or illnesses that cause hair loss. A poor immune system may also increase your chances of a bacterial or fungal infection on the scalp, both of which can prevent your follicles from producing healthy hair.
  • It’s not just inhaling cigarette smoke that can harm your hair follicles. If you regularly smoke at home or in a car with the windows rolled up, you could be creating environmental pollution. While most hair loss is genetic, research links thinning hair to environmental factors. Polluted air can exacerbate genetic hair loss and the carcinogens in smoke-filled air can obstruct the mechanisms that produce the protein of which hair is made.

Preventing Hair Loss from smoking –

If you are a smoker, quitting will not only help you maintain a full head of hair, but also allow your body to continue its natural biological processes without toxic disruption. You’ll be doing your internal organs, skin, hair follicles, and stress levels a favor by cutting out nicotine and tobacco products before they have the chance to take hold of your health.

Topical treatments, prescription medications, hair transplant surgery, and low-level laser therapy (LLLT) devices are all viable treatments for smoking-induced hair loss. HairMax is a LLT that can help reverse the hair growth cycle and make hair thicker. 

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