Diabetes is a difficult enough condition to manage, and hair loss on top of everything else just seems unfair. If you feel like your diabetes might be linked to your hair loss then read on for some tips on how to manage the condition, as well as some steps that might help with hair re-growth.
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Does Diabetes Cause Hair Loss
So, can diabetes cause hair loss? Well in layman's terms, yes, but there are various elements of diabetes that can contribute to hair reduction, so there isn't a single 'one size fits all' solution. Before we say anything, we should just point out that there has been no conclusive evidence that insulin causes hair loss. Whatever you do, do not stop taking your insulin unless your doctor has said you can.
We hope people won't be stupid enough to stop taking their insulin at the first sign of a bald patch, but there those out there who've ironed their clothes while they were still wearing them, so sometimes extreme caution is necessary. Anyway, back on the main issue - diabetes and hair loss. Listed here are some of the reasons you might be losing your luscious locks, and how diabetes may or may not be linked.
Insulin Resistance and Hair Loss
Before diabetes fully hits, it can be severely messing up your body and hormones. If you're steadily on your way to getting Type 2 diabetes, you're likely to have a high amount of insulin in your system that your body is slowly becoming resistant to. Insulin resistance causes high blood pressure, hunger, weight gain and, if left to its own devices, lead to pre-diabetes and possibly Type 2 diabetes.
Research has suggested that people with insulin resistance are more likely to suffer from hair loss, but, for now, we're unsure if this is to do with the resistance itself or the overall problems that it causes.
Diabetes and Poor Circulation
Diabetes can cause damage to blood vessels, causing poor blood flow and circulation. This makes it harder for the body to deliver nutrients to everything from organs to tissues, meaning that, inevitably, your hair follicles will suffer the consequences. This doesn't just affect the hair on your head, so if you're noticing some leg hair loss a lack of chest hair as well it's even more likely you're suffering from poor circulation.
Diabetes and Medication
Everyone has different reactions to medication, with some people never suffering from a single side effect listed on the medicine pack, and others generally getting the short end of the stick. Metformin is a medication that's used to help control blood sugar for patients with Type 2 diabetes.
Although there's been no scientific research on whether or not metformin causes hair loss, many people have complained of it happening, with some stating they had dealt with, at times severe, loss or thinning of their hair.
The effects of Metformin is one of the main reasons Type 2 diabetes is linked with hair loss, and although right now it's one of the best medications to control blood sugar, research might result in a less damaging medication for diabetics. If you're on the medication and noticing hair loss, have a chat with your doctor to see if there are ways you can counter balance the effect with other medicines.
Diabetes and Infections
As we all know, insulin is a hormone that allows your body to gain sugar from carbohydrates, store glucose, and regulate your blood sugar level, ensuring it doesn't get too high or low. If you've got Type 1 diabetes you don't have enough insulin, and if you have Type 2 diabetes the insulin you have doesn't work properly.
If you're suffering from a lack of insulin your blood sugar levels can rise above the recommended level, which then affects the immune system. This can causes illnesses, which then disrupt the hair cycle, leading to gradual thinning of the hair or bald patches.
Diabetes and Hair Loss
- Insulin resistance can cause issues that can, with certain people, lead to hair loss.
- Poor circulation is a side effect of diabetes that can affect the hair cycle.
- You’re more likely to get infections when suffering from diabetes, which can lead to hair loss.
- Certain medicines for diabetes, like Metformin, can lead to hair loss.
On That Note
So, being diabetic doesn't mean you'll suffer hair loss, but the condition and hair loss can be linked. If your diabetes isn't being controlled probably you can end up suffering from a range of negative side effects, with some of these increasing the risk of you losing hair.