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5 Causes of Hair Loss in People Over 65

By Cherie Coe, 9:00 am on

Losing hair is often thought to be just another part of aging, which is true to some degree. However, seniors should be aware their hair loss might have an underlying cause that can be prevented or treated. Jefferson County elder care experts examine 5 reasons seniors lose their hair and offer tips on preventing each cause.

1. Anemia

Iron deficiency is a common cause of thinning hair that is also associated with fatigue and weakness. Seniors should strive to add iron-rich foods like spinach, legumes, and lean meats to their diets. In serious cases, physician-prescribed iron supplements can help regrow thinning hair caused by anemia.

2. Diabetes

The stress of fluctuating blood sugar levels on the body can cause temporary hair loss. If diabetes goes untreated, hair will typically grow back at a slower rate than normal. Seniors without diabetes should practice preventative strategies such as maintaining a healthy weight and avoiding sugary foods, but those who have been diagnosed with the condition will need to stick to their management plans if they want to prevent hair loss.

3. Hypothyroidism

This hormonal condition can cause rapid hair loss. In some cases, hair may fall out in large chunks at a time. However, treating hypothyroidism with the proper prescribed medication often helps the hair grow back.

4. Brittle Follicles

Hair follicles naturally become smaller with age, leading to thinner strands that are more susceptible to damage. Many beauty treatments involving heat or chemicals can increase the brittleness of hair, but seniors who subject their hair to these harsh treatments can condition the hair regularly to keep it supple.

5. Medications

Most people are familiar with the effects chemotherapy has on hair, but other medications can also cause hair loss. Anticoagulants, or blood thinners, are a common cause of hair falling out. Though most seniors might not be able to stop taking their medications, they can talk to their doctor about options for slowing hair loss while they are using these medications to manage their health conditions.

Hair loss is just one of the many challenges of aging your loved one may face. However, the caregivers at Home Care Assistance can help your loved one manage many aspects of his or her health by providing medication reminders, cooking nutritious meals, and assisting with a variety of other tasks. In addition to respite and live-in care, we also offer specialized Parkinson’s, dementia, and Alzheimer’s care Jefferson County, CO, families trust. For more information on the high-quality home care we provide, call (303) 987-5992 to request a free consultation with a Care Manager.