FACTS ABOUT HAIR
Hair may look very simple in structure whereas the functions and the different layers in the hair structure are quite complicated. Hair is composed of a protein known as keratin. Keratin not only strengthens the hair but it is also the reason for the formation of nails and the outer layer of a person’s skin. Keratin is generally known as the combination of different amino acids in the form of a chain. The pigment cells known as melanin are the reason for the color of our hair. For every person the hair growth rate and speed varies but nowadays the hair growth rate and speed is affected these days because of environmental conditions such as pollution, etc.
WHAT DOES HAIR SHAFT MEAN?
According to medical terms, hair shaft refers to the visible part of the hair that is projected above the surface of the skin of a person. The hair shafts are made up of water, keratin and a binding agent. Keratin is nothing but the transformation of dead cells. Hair shaft structure is the reason why we do not feel any pain at all when we cut our hair. Hair shaft is formed in three different layers.
LAYERS OF HAIR SHAFT
Hair shaft has three different layers which are:
- The medulla – The medulla is the deepest layer in the hair shaft which is only found in large and thick hairs and not in thin hairs.
- The cortex – The cortex is the middle layer in the hair shaft which is the essential part of the hair shaft that gives strength, color and texture of the hair.
- The cuticle – The cuticle is the outer layer in the hair shaft which is thin and colorless which serves the main purpose to protect the cortex of the hair shaft.
COMMON CAUSES FOR HAIR BREAKAGE
- Usage of too many hair products or chemicals on hair
- Usage of hair straightners or curlers
- Excessive Smoking
- Women undergo extreme hair loss majorly during menopause
- Hair colouring
- Consumption of excessive amount of alcohol
- Improper and unhealthy diet
- Dandruff issue
- Work stress or any sort of stress
- Usage of strong medicines that causes weakening of hair shaft
- Wearing of helmets while riding two wheeler vehicles
DEFECTS OF HAIR SHAFT THAT CAUSES HAIR BREAKAGE
Normally, hair loss occurs to the damage in hair fiber whereas, when it comes to defects of hair shaft, the formation of the hair fiber is improper due to the error of the hair follicles. Hence, the following are a few issues caused because of defective hair shafts, which are:
- Loose Anagen Syndrome – Loose Anagen Syndrome is the defect in which the grown hair is very loose and it can be easily plucked out while combing.
- Traction alopecia and Trichotillomania – Traction alopecia and Trichotillomania is the defect in which when thinning of hair occurs and when this type of hair is plucked out it creates clear bald regions on the head.
- Monilethrix – Monilethrix is the defect in which the hair fiber gets weakened.
- Cuticle Stripping – Cuticle stripping is a defect which is caused because of Overusage of heating tools on hair such as hair straightners, hair curlers, etc which is the root cause for the hair cuticle to get stripped.
- Trichorrhexis Nodosa – Trichorrhexis Nodosa is also commonly known as trichonodosis. Trichorrhexis Nodosa is a defect in which weakening of the hair fiber due to malnutrition.