Why Do We Get Gray Hair?


Although hair graying is a natural process, most people do not like to see themselves in the mirror with white hair. Every person will surely encounter white hair, which is one of the signs of aging, at some point in her/his life. The reason for the graying of the hair is the loss of pigmentation. The pigments are responsible for the color of the hair cause whitening as the melanin production capacity decreases. When you're young, hair is rich in melanin. However, as the hair gets gray, the amount of melanin found decreases and even white hair does not contain any melanin.

Although white hair increases with age, it can be seen not only in the elderly but also in young people. Although white hair is one of the signs of aging, you can come across it at any age. Even if you're young enough to be a high school or college student, you may be struggling with white hair. Especially if you have dark hair, unfortunately, white hair can stand out more.

Premature hair graying can be caused by many reasons, from genetics to various diseases. Generally speaking, we can say that there are seven main causes of premature graying.


Genetic | Why Do We Get Gray Hair?

Genetic factors are one of the main factors that determine hair graying. If you have noticed that your hair turns gray at an early age, your parents or other relatives probably have gray hair at an early age, just like you. Since there is no way to change your genetics, you don't have a chance to cure this with drugs. However, if you are not satisfied with the look you have, of course, you always have the option to dye your hair.


Stress | Why Do We Get Gray Hair?

Stress is one of the most important problems to be dealt with in daily life. Although it is beneficial to have a dose of stress, too much can be quite harmful to the human body. At the top of the ailments caused by stress are insomnia problems, anxiety disorders, anorexia or excessive appetite, and high blood pressure.

Stress can adversely affect our body and cause various ailments as well as premature graying of the hair. In recent scientific studies on mice, it has been found that there is a connection between stress and the decrease in the number of stem cells in the hair follicles. If you have noticed the increase in white in your hair, the stress may be responsible for this situation.

Autoimmune Diseases

Autoimmune diseases can cause premature graying of hair. This situation occurs when the body's immune system attacks its own cells. In conditions such as alopecia and vitiligo, the immune system can attack the hair cells, causing pigment loss and causing the hair to turn white.

Thyroid Diseases

Thyroid Diseases | Why Do We Get Gray Hair?

Hormonal changes caused by thyroid disease may also be responsible for early hair graying. The thyroid gland is a butterfly-shaped organ located at the base of your neck. It helps the body control its functions. The most important task of the hormones secreted by the thyroid gland is to adjust the calories expended and to provide energy production. An overactive or underactive thyroid can cause your body to release less melanin. Less melanin secretion will cause you to have white hair.


Vitamin B12 Deficiency

Vitamin B12 Deficiency | Why Do We Get Gray Hair?

One of the causes of early graying may be vitamin B-12 deficiency. Vitamin B-12 is an important vitamin for the body. Vitamin B-12, which is effective in the growth rate and color of the hair, is also an important factor in providing energy for the body. Our body needs B-12 for healthy red blood cells that carry oxygen and are also found in hair cells. In case of its deficiency, hair may weaken and melanin production may be affected.

Chemical Dyes and Hair Products

Chemical Dyes and Hair Products | Why Do We Get Gray Hair?

Some hair products, including chemical hair dyes and shampoos, can cause premature graying of hair. Chemicals in the products may cause less melanin secretion. In addition, hydrogen peroxide, which is found in most hair dyes, is a very harmful chemical. This may affect the graying process of the hair.


Cigaret | Why Do We Get Gray Hair?

It turned out that there is a relationship between premature hair graying and smoking. Studies have proven that there is a relationship between hair graying and smoking before the age of thirties. It is known that smoking increases the risk of lung cancer and heart disease. In fact, smoking can have different harmful effects over a long period of time. Smoking causes constriction of blood vessels, thus reducing the blood supply to hair follicles and hair loss. In addition, the toxins in cigarettes can damage the hair follicles and cause premature hair graying.

Can hair graying be prevented or reversed?

Reversing or blocking the graying process of the hair depends entirely on what caused it. If your hair is gray due to genetic reasons, it is irreversible. However, if you have a whitening problem caused by health problems, you should meet your doctor and follow a treatment process accordingly. If you know the underlying cause of graying, then the pigmentation may return.

Studies have shown that thyroid problems cause hair graying, but pigmentation starts again after hormone treatments.

In addition, vitamin B12 injections and pills improve the health of hair follicles and help them regain their natural color.

If your hair has turned gray due to stress or smoking, although there are no proven results yet, pigmentation may return after you quit smoking and after your stress levels decrease.

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