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Can Hair Extensions Lead To Hair Loss?

One thing I have learned over the years is that there is never an absolute answer when it comes to hair.

While it's true that a long history of utilizing hair extensions, especially those that apply pressure to the roots of the hair, can at some point cause challenges with traction alopecia, which is a form of hair loss, it doesn't mean it will happen.  Or even that it will happen to everyone.

(Image of Jessica Simpson HairDo Clip Bang hair extensions - Twitter - All Rights Reserved)

New studies are indicating that hair extensions may cause hair loss issues.  But the studies are just the tip of the iceberg.  There are too many variable that must be considered before making a blanket statement that hair extensions can lead to hair loss.

Hair Extension Hair Loss Risk Factors

What should be considered when weighing a risk of hair extensions and hair loss are the following items:

1.  Age of the person getting the hair extensions. 

2.  Type and thickness of the hair that will have extensions added.

3.  Current health of the scalp where extensions will be attached

4.  Type of hair extension methods utilized such as temporary or semi-permanent

(weaves, fusion, beads, tape or other methods)

5.  How long the extensions will be continuously worn

6.  Expertise of the hair extension technician

7.  History of scalp problems

8.  Genetic predisposition towards hair thinning or loss

9.  Overall health of the hair extension clients

To simply say hair extensions can lead to hair loss is just as misleading as saying hair extensions will never lead to hair loss.  One statement does not fit all types of people, scalps, hair or types of extensions.

(Image of Jessica Simpson wearing HairDo Clip Bangs and hair extensions - Twitter - All Rights Reserved)

With every hair and beauty treatment there are always two sides to the coin.  There is the positive side and the potential challenges or side effects.  While the celebrity trend is current driving more hair consumers to consider hair extensions, it doesn't mean that women in the world who wear them will all have hair loss.

The advantage of hair extensions is that it can offer a wide range of different looks and styles in a short period of time.  It eliminates the need to spend many months or years growing out a bad haircut, perm, chemical treatment or bangs.  It also eliminates a long waiting period for having super long tresses.

Why all the chatter about hair loss concerns tied to hair extensions?  A study published in the British Journal of Dermatology last year reported that extensions could lead to permanent baldness and that the problem might be more common than reported.

It's true that extensions attached too close to the scalp or to very few strands of hair can put great tension on follicles in the scalp which can become inflamed, causing hair fall as a result. This is known as traction alopecia.  Traction alopecia can also occur when hair is pulled tightly back from the hairline and pulled into tight ponytails or braids.

If a hair extension plan is formulated to make sure the hair has resting periods in-between hair extension applications and the hair is not applied so as to apply undue pressure to the follicles a lot of the known dangers of falling hair, bald patches or other repercussions of wearing hair extensions can be avoided.

The key is to always evaluate the various risk factors and then moving forward or not moving forward with a crystal clear vision of all the options.

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