Alopecia Totalis: What Is It? Alopecia Totalis Causes, Symptoms, Treatment

Alopecia Totalis: What Is It? Alopecia Totalis Causes, Symptoms, Treatment 

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Alopecia Totalis: What Is It?

Alopecia Totalis is an auto-immune illness in which a person's hair on the scalp is completely lost. It can start as Alopecia Areata and progress to full-blown Alopecia Totalis in some cases. Alopecia usually begins as a single patch of balding hair that spreads in one of four directions. One possibility is for the balding area to remain contained while not growing hair; another is for it to revert to normal hair development; yet another is for the balding patch to spread slowly. Finally, the worst-case scenario is for the balding patch to expand swiftly and widely.  
To give you an example, the best-case scenario is that your hair returns to normal, while the worst-case scenario is that you lose all hair on your scalp and body.

Furthermore, no precise definition of how alopecia spreads exists. There have been cases where a bald patch on the head or brow has spread throughout the body. In other circumstances, the bald patch will remain stable for several years until gradually growing back and leaving no trace that it was ever bald.
If you have alopecia or total alopecia, you should seek medical attention as soon as possible.  
Do your homework, talk to experts, and schedule an appointment with a renowned dermatologist. You'll feel better knowing you're taking proactive measures and the best course of action for your circumstances. Knowing the best and worst-case scenarios can also help you plan for what you will need to do in either situation.

Once you've taken action, you'll be able to help avoid the stress that leads to alopecia. Because alopecia is a stressful condition in and of itself, it's normal to see persons with this form of hair loss become anxious and worsen their condition. You'll be more prepared to observe greater hair loss if you know what to expect. This will relieve stress and, perhaps, alleviate the symptoms of alopecia.  
People who don't understand why they have alopecia and/or Alopecia Totalis, or who don't even realize they have it, keep their minds in a constant state of stress. In fact, each and every hair that falls indicates that their position is worse, which is stressful in and of itself.

Some people believe that one should accept one's life as it is and not try to change it. These same people, on the other hand, would be shocked at the variety of hair loss cures and solutions available today. Some products even contain an FDA-approved topical substance that has been clinically proven to promote hair growth. It might be worth a go. You never know until you take a chance.  

Alopecia areata is a type of hair loss that affects many parts of the body, most commonly the scalp. It's known as spot baldness because it develops bald areas on the head, especially in the early stages. Males and females are both affected by alopecia areata. This is not the same as male pattern baldness, which is a genetic issue. One type of hair loss is alopecia areata. It is unknown how many people are affected by alopecia areata. According to estimates, 1 in 1000 to 2 in 100 persons will be afflicted at some point in their lives. Alopecia areata can affect anyone at any age, however, it is more common in teenagers and children.  
The first patch of hair loss appears in roughly 6 out of 10 instances before the age of 20. Alopecia areata is a disorder that can strike at any time. Hair grows back in some people, but it falls out again later. Hair grows back and stays in some people. Each case is distinct. Even if a person loses all of his or her hair, it is possible for it to regrow.

Alopecia areata is a skin illness that damages the hair follicles, which are where hairs grow from. Hair falls out in small, circular patches approximately the size of a quarter in most cases. Hair loss varies in severity; in some situations, it is limited to a few locations. 
Hair loss can be more severe in some people. It can sometimes affect the entire scalp (alopecia totalis) or even the entire body and scalp (alopecia Universalis). It's impossible to say how much hair will fall out. Hair regrowth is common in normal alopecia areata and can take months or even years, but it cannot be assured. Hair can sometimes regrow white, at least in the beginning. It's not uncommon for people to lose even more hair. Total regrowth is less likely in alopecia totalis and alopecia Universalis.
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Causes of Alopecia:

There is no recognized etiology for alopecia areata. In around a quarter of all cases, there is a familial history of alopecia. Alopecia areata is sometimes linked to autoimmune disorders. — The immune system normally defends the body against infection and disease. When you have an autoimmune disease, your immune system targets a portion of your own body by mistake. The immune system attacks the hair follicles in alopecia areata. Some form of trigger starts the attack on the hair follicles in persons whose genes put them at risk for the disease. A virus or something in the person's environment could be the cause.

Symptoms of Alopecia:

Alopecia areata is characterized by roundish patches of hair loss on the head, as well as a smooth, hairless scalp in the affected areas. Alopecia totalis refers to the entire loss of all scalp hair, whereas alopecia Universalis refers to the loss of all scalp and body hair.    

Risk factors:

Although the cause of the autoimmune disease is unknown, some persons are at a higher risk of developing alopecia totalis. Anyone can be affected, however, it is more frequent in children and adults under the age of 40.

A hereditary tendency to alopecia may also exist in some persons. It's not uncommon for someone who has alopecia totalis to have a family member who also has the condition.
Some specialists believe there is a link between excessive stress and the development of alopecia. Chronic stress can wreak havoc on the immune system, impairing its ability to operate normally.   

How it’s diagnosed:

Because alopecia is a skin condition, your doctor may recommend you to a dermatologist for a proper diagnosis. It's a common ailment, and some doctors can diagnose it with just a visual examination.
To assess the pattern of hair loss, your doctor may perform a physical examination of your head. You may be subjected to additional tests to confirm a diagnosis. A scalp biopsy, in which a skin sample is extracted from your scalp and sent to a lab, maybe part of this examination. Blood tests may be ordered by your doctor to rule out an autoimmune disease or an underlying problem that looks like alopecia, such as a thyroid disorder.  

 Complications of alopecia totalis:

Alopecia is unpredictably unexpected. While some patients respond to treatment and recover their hair, alopecia totalis has the potential to worsen. You may notice hair loss in other areas of your body, including your brows, legs, arms, nostrils, and crotch. Alopecia Universalis is the medical term for this condition.
Early detection and treatment of alopecia totalis lowers the risk of the condition worsening.  

Treatment of Alopecia:

  • Medications that encourage hair growth (such as minoxidil and finasteride).
  • Treating any underlying sickness or condition.
  •  Injections of corticosteroids (when treating alopecia areata).
  •  Scalp thinning.


Alopecia totalis is a disorder that can be permanent or transitory. There's no way to know what will happen to you because this skin disorder is so unpredictable. The earlier you begin therapy, the better your chances of a favorable outcome.

Keep in mind that you are not alone. Join a local support group for comfort and encouragement if you're having trouble coping with hair loss. One-on-one counseling may also be beneficial to you. 

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