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Alopecia areata can affect any age or gender, and is often a very hard thing to deal with. Alopecia is considered an autoimmune disease, which causes the body to start attacking the hair follicles. It is through this that starts the process of hair loss. Roughly one million people in the UK alone are affected by alopecia, and dealing with hair loss can be a very traumatic experience. This is why we will talk openly in this article, about the cases and effects of Alopecia, whilst finding viable everyday solutions to help make living with the condition more comfortable. 
What are the causes of alopecia? 
Alopecia areata is widely noted as an auto immune disease. This means that alopecia could be a result of an abnormality within the immune system causing it to attack the body, in particular, the hair follicles. The reason behind the attack is still unknown, however, the condition is often associated with other autoimmune diseases, such as: 
• Vitiligo 
• Rheumatoid arthritis 
• Lupus 
• Thyroid disease 
 
These diseases have been connected with the development of alopecia areata in the past, however it is important to understand that the diagnosis and treatments of these autoimmune disorders will have no effect on the development of alopecia areata. 
Alopecia areata can also occur within your family, suggesting that the disorder could be hereditary. 
 
The symptoms of alopecia 
Although Alopecia areata can affect anybody, it is most commonly found in adults between the ages of 30 and 60. The symptoms of this condition are quite obvious as they affect the hair follicles. The most notable symptoms are: 
• One or more noticeable patches of missing hair on the scalp. 
 
• A general thinning of hair across the body. This is a more generalised form of hair loss, and is referred to as ‘diffuse alopecia.’ 
 
• The entirety of hair on the scalp is lost, known as ‘Alopecia totalis.’ 
 
• Complete hair loss across all of the body, known as ‘alopecia universalis.’ 
 
All of these symptoms are entirely physical however. Most people suffering with alopecia areata will tell you that the emotional toll this condition takes is the most damaging aspect. 
 
Feelings of loneliness and isolation are amongst the most common reactions towards alopecia, as well as a sense of losing your personality and identity, because hair is so integral to our appearance. 
If these emotions are left to fester, they can transform into mental illnesses, such as severe anxiety or depression. 
 
Alopecia treatments and solutions 
A lot of the issues involved with alopecia areata need to be addressed by you firstly. Feelings of depression, anxiety and embarrassment can be resolved through openly talking about your condition, whether with a friend, family member or counsellor. 
 
There are multiple support groups in place for people going through a similar thing, so you are not alone in your condition, or feeling the way in which you do. Once you feel comfortable speaking about alopecia areata, you can then begin accepting your condition and your hair loss, and begin working towards solutions. 
 
Covering up your head with a scarf, wig or hair extensions is a perfectly viable short-term solution, should you want to cover up at all. These allow you to express yourself through different materials, patterns or colours. 
 
Most cases of alopecia areata are temporary, especially within women, however, permanent hair loss is still a common issue. If you are not completely comfortable with the lack of hair, there are long term alopecia treatments available, such as PRP treatment, hair transplants and strip techniques. 
 
If you are looking for hair implants in Birmingham, why not get in contact with Birmingham Dermatology Clinic, for an in depth look into hair loss solutions, tailored for you. You can also check out our testimonials page, to see what our previous customers have said about our work! 
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