DrEO Clinic Hair What is Hair and what is it for?

What is Hair and what is it for?

Hair is an annex to the skin present in all mammals. It has a number of important functions, including protection, insulation térhythmic, camouflage, dispersionsweat and fat, it also helps the sensory function of the skin.

Structurally, the hair is divided into two main parts, the hair shaft and the follicle. The hair shaft or fiber is the visible portion that is seen above the skin. It is mainly composed of a protein called keratin. Basically the hair shaft is a dead remnant.

El follicle it is one of the most complex organs in the human body. This structure is below the skin. The follicle works like a keratin factory, which undergoes cyclical transformations among its growth phases and its resting phases, this is known as the "hair cycle". That is, the follicle has a capacity to regenerate itself cyclically in the period of a person's life.

There are two main types of hair in all people, lterminal hair and hairy hair. Both have different characteristics and are located in different areas of the body. In the scalp, in the eyebrows and eyelashes we have thick, long, highly pigmented hair, these are the terminal hairs. In the body we short, thin and less pigmented hair, These are the hairy hair or body hair.

In the human body there are approximately 5 million follicles. He scalp has between 80 thousand to 150 thousand. The body hair has a capacity of self-renewal, which is determined by something called the "hair cycle ”.

The hair cycle has different purposes. In mammals, for example the synchronized growth of follicles prepares the coat for the climatic changes in each season.

Humans lack a coat that covers the entire body, therefore hair renewal is asynchronous, since it is not necessary to renew the coat to face the climatic changes.

In humans, hair renewal serves other purposes, such as lClean the surface of the skin eliminating remains of dead skin, parasites and other toxins. The hair cycle can also help in regulation of hormonal secretion, both endocrine and paracrine. Another possible function of the hair cycle is the keratinocyte protection constantly dividing against damageor oxidative.

El hair cycle refers to the cyclical changes that the follicle undergoesass throughés of the different phases of hair growth. All follicles go through a stage of active growth (phase anágena), a stage of involution (phase catágena) and a resting phase (phase telógena).

The length of the hair is determined by the duration of the anagen phase. It lasts between 2-6 years. Approximately 80-90% of the scalp follicles are in this phase. The catagen phase lasts about 2 weeks followed by a telogen phase what lasts 2-3 months.

Surely you would like to know the "Most common hair myths", if so, click here.

What is the speed of hair growth?

The speed of hair growth varies depending on each person and their nutritional status. However, the Average growth rate is 0.3 to 0.5 mm per day.

La pigmentation hair has multiple functions as prSkin protection against damageo UV, thermoregulationion and protection against oxidative damage by free radicals. Therefore the melanin formed within the follicular cells protects the follicles from free radicals. The transfer of melanin of the melanocytes keratinocytes promotes their differentiation. Unlike skin melanocytes, the melanocytes of the follicles produce melanin oronly during the anágena and stop producing it at the beginning of the transition between the anagen and catagen phase.

The loss of active melanocytes in the pigmentary unit of the follicle produces the appearance of Gray hairs. This phenomenon begins during the third or fourth decade of life. The main cause is the depletion of the reserve of melanocytic stem cells. Damage to the pigment unit of the follicle caused by reactive oxygen species plays an important role in this phenomenon.

From ancient times to our times, abundant silky hair has symbolized health and beauty among human beings; likewise, this has been used as a tool to denote the aesthetics of the feminine and masculine, since it contributes to the personality of each one. However, its influence has been somewhat beyond aesthetics, since its function is to protect the scalp and be in charge of regulating body temperature.

Therefore, the importance of the scalp is essential for hair to be healthy and silky. Its function is to provide the hair with nutrients so that it can grow in the healthiest and strongest way; In this way, the hair follicle is located within the scalp, from here it is nourished to grow and renew itself.

Hair structure

Hair is more than we see and style. Actually, its structure makes it something interesting due to the characteristics it has. Are you interested in knowing more about your hair? Keep reading.

First things first, the hair is internally composed of a hair follicle, this means that it can feed on it and, therefore, grow. Understanding this, we can explain that it is divided into two parts: root and stem.

The root is under the skin, it is what we know as a follicle. Its shape is like that of a drop. The function it has is to accumulate the nutrients that come to feed and start a process of hair growth.

On the other hand, the stem is what the hair is entirely composed of. It is like the body of the hair. From this part others are derived that entirely compose the hair. For example, there is the cuticle. Its function is to regulate the nutrients that enter the hair, as well as protect it from external aggressions.

There is also the cortex or the cortex, this part is responsible for the elasticity and resistance of the hair. Also, in it, there is melanin (which is what gives our hair its characteristic color).

And finally, there is the medulla, which is the innermost part of the hair, and cells are derived from it that significantly help the hair.

Hair types

Do you know what type of hair you have? Surely you do, but you may have doubts about the products you should use on your hair type. If you want to know more, keep reading.

Dry hair

This type does not produce enough oil to keep hair well. This causes it to break, thus requiring special care products.

In short, you can recognize it if it has no movement or brightness, if it looks static and brittle, besides being difficult to untangle, it is choppy and is sensitive to chlorine, sea salt and some dyes.

Normal hair

It produces a normal amount of fat, which gives it shine, resistance and strength. It has a healthy appearance and natural movement, it does not have dry or fat tips on the scalp.

Mixed hair

Your hair is between two waters, it is neither oily nor completely dry. It can be distinguished because the tips are dry; that is to say, it tends to be drier on the ends and greasy on the scalp, it does not have volume and it does not maintain the hairstyle for long.

Greasy hair

Here the sebum or fat production of the scalp glands is higher than desired and has to be washed frequently. It is shown with a shiny appearance and without volume, in addition to looking oily and moist, especially at the roots. Generally it is fine hair that has a greater tendency to get greased.

What is hair?

Without noticing it, it fulfills a more important function than the one we give it. In general, the human body is something extraordinary that we are not able to appreciate or understand. We are equipped with something extremely impressive; Each part plays an important role so that everything is balanced.

For its part, hair fulfills two functions in our system: it provides protection and balance in body temperature. Did you know that, in general, the hair that you have all over your body protects you? But of what? Well, just like animals, we humans have hair that protects us from cold, infections and dust. Amazing!

It has the function of protecting us from the outside, it is important that you realize that thanks to this, the protection that you have throughout the body helps so that many molecules that are in the environment cannot harm us.

For this reason, we must be more aware and take care of our hair.

How much hair do we have?

Surely you have wondered. You would be surprised to know that the number of hairs that each person has varies due to gender and race. In other words, nobody has the same amount.

However, in general an adult person has between 100,000 and 200,000 hairs on the head. Many times this amount depends on the pigmentation that the person has, for example: a redhead can have between 75,000 and 90,000 hairs on the head, whereas people with black hair have 100,000 hairs. And blonde people, they have up to 150,000 hairs.

Therefore, it varies in quantity due to the person. This is because in many cultures, people have abundant hair while others, such as Asia, have little. And you, how many hair do you think you have?

How many hairs fall out a day?

Without noticing it, the hair falls off the scalp easily. Because it has a life cycle where, when it reaches the last phase, it must come off because it has already fulfilled its mission and another will grow in its place. Do you want to know how many hairs fall from your head per day? You will be surprised by the amount that falls without you realizing it. Keep reading.

It has a life cycle and is made up of four phases. If you are interested, we will write for you in another section the phases of the hair. Well, as we were saying, hair is made up of four phases, within them, the second and third phase, the hair is detached from the scalp.

Then from our head fall from 100 to 200 hairs a day! Can you imagine it? It can be a lot, but it always happens on different occasions or activities of the day. For example, when you find the typical loose hairs on the pillow when you wake up; when you bathe, other hair tends to come off and so on during the day.

So don't worry if you feel like your hair is falling out. Many times, it is usually because your hair has completed its life cycle.

What causes hair loss?

When the hair ends up falling out, it is because something is happening that its strength is not the same. This may be a sign that you are not taking proper care of it or that there is a problem that you are not paying attention to.

The hair goes through three periods where it grows, strengthens and ends up falling out; It is natural, when the hair meets this period it gives another the opportunity to be born and grow. It is the cycle of life.

On the other hand, when the hair has not completely fulfilled that period and begins to fall, it is when there may already be a problem that directly impacts its resistance.

This may be a response to a health problem; for women, they may use the tongs or tumble dryer a lot; In the case of men, they are using various products on their hair. It can also be the consequence of taking certain medications or undergoing treatments such as chemotherapy.

What to do to accelerate hair growth?

Growing hair is a topic that interests many of us. Either because of a cut that now makes us feel dissatisfied, because our hair has been falling out or simply because we want to have it longer than we currently have it and we want to make it grow as quickly as possible.

First, you have to know that it has a growth process and we cannot change that operation. On the other hand, the treatments that are prescribed for hair is for people who suffer from severe problems due to hair loss.

When the interest is only to make it grow faster, you can choose to take vitamins that aim to stimulate hair growth at a faster speed than you usually have.

In this case, there are multivitamins that work to strengthen the hairor, as well as to improve hair health. For example:

Vitamina B1

In addition to being anti-stress, it prevents hair loss and helps its growth.

Vitamina B2

It is responsible for cell regeneration, as well as the formation of the skin and the growth of hair and nails.

Vitamina B3

It favors the dilation of blood vessels and capillaries.

Vitamina B7

If it does not sound familiar you also know it as Biotin, it helps restore hair follicles and stimulates hair growth. Just like it strengthens it to stop looking rough.

Hair phases

Did you know that your hair has a life cycle? You read that right, life cycle. It is interesting to think that what helps us to have a unique style, also has a period of life, well they say that nothing is forever and like everything in this life, it also has a beginning and an end. If you want to know more about your hair, keep reading.

The hair has a normal cycle, or life cycle, where its follicles go through three phases and that depend on the nutritional, hormonal and age status of the person in order to give it the style and personality that you want to give it:

Phase I: Anagen.

It is when it begins to grow from the follicle, as its fiber is produced. Its duration is from 2 to 8 years. 85 to 90% of the follicles are in this phase. Imagine that the plant is your hair and the follicles are like the seeds that you have planted, if you think about it the follicles should be fed in the same way that the seeds do. Both need the essentials to begin to develop and grow.

Phase II: Catagen.

In this phase, hair growth stops for two weeks and the fiber that was previously produced is separated from the bloodstream. In this phase, it stops feeding and, consequently, falls when being brushed. This is where the hair weakens because it has stopped feeding, therefore, what will happen is that it ends up falling like the leaves of the plant.

Phase III: Telogen.

This is when we reach the last phase, where it lasts 2 to 3 months. In this phase the hair falls off naturally or, equally, by brushing.

Dry hair

It is up to us to understand our hair to know how to take care of it. Many times we believe that what we use is good for our hair, but in reality, the only thing we achieve is to end up spoiling it and accelerating its loss instead of its growth.

Maybe you have this problem because you have not paid attention to what your hair really requires. Do you want to know the reason why you have dry hair? Keep reading.

What causes our hair to dry? When hair begins to lack nutrients, what happens is that by nature it will begin to lose its smooth and hydrating texture. This is for external reasons, for example: you are not feeding correctly or you do not drink enough water, therefore, this affects not only your hair, but also your system.

Another important factor is when you use shampoos that are not suitable for your hair or that have a lot of chemicals. The latter is always the main reason why the hair begins to dry, since all the components that it may have absorb the natural fats that your hair has and for this reason it ends up drying.

When the hair dries it is because we are not taking care of it in the correct way. Although, it also happens that by taking medications this causes the hair to begin to deteriorate and lose its shine. For this part, it is natural that the medicine ends up affecting something else, in this case, the hair.

The solutions that can be taken are the following: eat well, drink plenty of water, use a suitable shampoo for your hair without so many chemicals, do not dry your hair with guns, hydrate it with natural oils to maintain that shine and in this way you will help your hair is hydrated again. Remember that everything starts from the inside to make a change on the outside.

Hair color

Have you ever wondered where your hair color comes from? Melanin is responsible for the color of the hair. Melanin is a natural substance that gives color not only to hair, but also to the skin and iris of the eye.

This is made up of two pigments that contribute to give color, on the one hand you have eumelanin and pheomelanin. You will be surprised to know that these two colors make up all the hair, eyes and skin color that we know. Eumelanin is a dark pigment (brown / dark) while pheomelanin is red. 

So, therefore, if we have more eumelanin we will have a darker color and if we have more pheomelanin we will have a lighter color, such as blonde. All this works as a balance between the pigments. Obviously, if you have a stronger color like redhead, it is because pheomelanin is more abundant than eumelanin.

And you, which pigment is most abundant in you? Eumelanin or pheomelanin?

Hair shape

There are a number of ways to help you show off your authentic style and personality. If you want to know more, keep reading.

According to the form, there are these four types that we know you know but it does not hurt to remember them. Curled hair is extremely curly hair, its main characteristic is that it is usually rough, fragile and rolls easily. It is easily damaged if the care process such as washing, styling or straightening.

For its part, curly hair has an S shape; it is elastic and well defined. When combing it, it is easily smoothed; its texture is smooth and fine.

On the other hand, wavy hair has the same shape as curly hair but, unlike the previous one, its shape is maintained from the scalp to the ends.

Finally, straight hair is one that does not have undulations. This type of hair does not dry out easily when washing repeatedly, and always requires products that moisten it.

So you know, whether it's straight, wavy or curly, the shape you want to give it depends on your style and personality, but it is always important to keep it in good condition so that it looks in all its splendor.

Now that you know all about the hair, we recommend you follow the hair trends here.

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Dr. Enrique Orozco
Dr. Enrique Orozcohttps://dreoclinic.com/
General Director, Specialist in Trichology and Hair Transplantation Certified by ABHRS. Only ABHRS Certified with residence in Mexico.

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Dr. Enrique Orozco
General Director, Specialist in Trichology and Hair Transplantation Certified by ABHRS. Only ABHRS Certified with residence in Mexico.

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