The stresses of divorce can take their toll on an individual. The physical signs of stress can be seen in a variety of ways, but many people would consider hair loss to be one of the more impactful signs of a stressful situation.
According to the American Academy of Dermatology, hair loss, or alopecia, has a variety of causes, and while the most common type of hair loss is hereditary (about 80 million men and women in the United States), extreme amounts of stress also can result in noticeable hair loss. It can begin as bald patches or gradual thinning and can manifest intro complete baldness. One of the many causes associated is due to the nerve and hormonal signals, prompting your adrenal glands to release a surge of hormones (among them, cortisol), elevating your blood pressure and increasing your heart rate, according to the Mayo Clinic.
There also is a delay in when the hair stops growing and when the hair falls out. This delay typically lasts three months, according to The Atlantic. The delay between a stressful event and the loss of hair creates a delay for the emotional impact on the loss itself. Once it occurs, it can create additional stress.
This heightened level of building stress is well-documented to cause a number of other health issues. However, losing one’s hair can be a devastating experience, especially after having suffered through a divorce. The effects of hair loss on an individual due to the stresses of divorce vary, based on gender.
Studies and research trends
A study was done through the Case Western Reserve School of Medicine that monitored 84 identical twins and had them complete a lifestyle survey, had their hair analyzed via photographs, and hormone blood tests. They found that diabetes, smoking, and a history of skin conditions contributed to a greater likelihood of losing your hair due to the stress of a divorce.
The study monitored twins, due to their genetic destiny in having the same number of hairs. However, researchers chalked up a set of twins having a different number of hairs as being related to outside factors, other than genetics.
For men, a similar study through the Case Western Reserve School of Medicine monitored hair loss due to the stresses of divorce in men. This study revealed that men who had high blood pressure, a history of dandruff, and did not exercise regularly had a higher risk of losing hair from the top of the head. There also are hair loss risks due to the stresses of divorce found in a history of cancer, smoking, and heavy drinking.
Furthermore, men who spend large amounts of time outdoors face a high risk of thinning hair because of exposure to the sun. They also discovered that while there was an element of genetics at play, male siblings do not all share the same hair patterns.
Strangely enough, there also is research that suggests that low testosterone in men can help them keep their hair, whereas higher testosterone levels would suggest a greater risk for hair loss.
The study at Case Western Reserve School of medicine concluded that the connection between one’s mind and body is more powerful than we, as a society give credit to. The researchers also advocated how one handles stress is the determining factor that makes a difference.
Resources to use
There are several ways to combat the loss of hair, due to the stresses of divorce, that are endorsed by medical professionals who have studied their effects. Bauman Medical specializes in hair transplants and hair loss treatments and has detailed treatments and supplements, including Viviscal Pro nutritional supplement, Formula 82M minoxidil, Nutreve personal Laser, and cordless LaserCap.
Other treatments clinically-proven to helping men combat hair loss include the Nioxin series, Rogaine for Men, and Finasteride, a drug proven by the Food and Drug Administration to effectively treat male pattern baldness in the vast majority of men who use it, according to the American Hair Loss Association.
In creating a market for hair loss treatment, modern science has given these individuals who are in the process of rebuilding their lives, a little comfort. These treatments are designed to work over time, in an effort to slow down the hair loss, halt the hair loss, and even regrow hair. It is a matter of sticking to the treatments, in order to effectively give yourself a chance at regaining your hair.
Dan Pearce is an Online Editor for Lexicon, focusing on subjects related to the legal services of customers, Cordell & Cordell and Cordell Planning Partners. He has written countless pieces on MensDivorce.com, detailing the plight of men and fathers going through the divorce experience, as well as the issues seniors and their families experience throughout the estate planning journey on ElderCareLaw.com. Mr. Pearce has managed websites and helped create content, such as the Men’s Divorce Newsletter and the YouTube series, “Men’s Divorce Countdown.” He also has been a contributor on both the Men’s Divorce Podcast and ElderTalk with TuckerAllen.
Mr. Pearce assisted in fostering a Cordell Planning Partners practice area specific for Veterans, as they deal with the intricacies of their benefits while planning for the future. He also helped create the Cordell Planning Partners Resource Guide and the Cordell Planning Partners Guide to Alternative Residence Options, specific for seniors with questions regarding their needs and living arrangements.