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Type 1: HAIR

Discussion in 'Type 1 Diabetes' started by Snd23, Oct 15, 2015.

  1. Snd23

    Snd23 Type 1 · Member

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    Afternoon everybody!

    I am a rather newly diagnosed T1. Started my insulin in mid July. I am on novorapid and levemir. Overall, I have had few complications, but I am doing rather well, keeping my average glucose level between 7-8mmol/L.
    Recently, I have noticed I am loosing my hair. I have always had very thick hair and lot of it. Its also very long. It is getting rather worrying, I can pull out handfuls of hair, my brush gets full after two days. I am very concerned about this.
    Has anybody else experienced this? Is there anything I can do?
    Please help !
     
  2. urbanracer

    urbanracer Type 1 · Expert
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    Hi @Snd23 ,

    Type 'hair loss' in the search bar in the top right hand corner of your screen and have a look at some of the threads.

    It is not uncommon and could be related to high blood sugars or even thyroid problems.
     
  3. ivm18

    ivm18 Parent · Well-Known Member

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    Hi, my son ( diagnosed type 1 Feb.this year) also experienced hair loss for about couple of months a week after diagnosis. A lot of his hair fell off and it was very scary. But per doctors advised and opinion that it could be due to trauma and stressed because of a very high blood sugar prior his diagnosis.
    Doctors also had him tested for thyroid and other autoimmune condition but the results were negative.
    My son only uses herbal shampoos and he doesn't rinse his hair with warm water. And now his hair came back to its normal thickness and no more excessive falling hair.
    But still it is better to ask medical professional about your hair condition.

    Best regards.
     
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  4. misswhiplash

    misswhiplash Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    I had this after I was diagnosed too - it came out in huge clumps. I told the consultant about it and was told that, in the absence of thyroid issues, it was probably just to do with the stress of the changes in hormone levels (from onset of diabetes and from starting to take insulin) and that it was likely to stop in a few months (rather like losing hair when pregnant, which I believe is common). She was absolutely right - within a few months I was back to the usual levels of plug hole unblocking... I also have v v thick hair, so didn't suffer too much losing a bit more for a little while.
     
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  5. Totto

    Totto Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    I had considerable hair loss at diagnosis as a T2 but it wasn't the first time. Mostly I've lost hair to the extent of bald patches when hypothyroid. Also anaemia can cause hair loss. As hair loss usually starts 3-4 months after the event that causes it your current hair loss is probably due to your diabetes and will slow down eventually. But get Hb, Ferritin and thyroid checked just in case. And B12 as well.
     
  6. Snd23

    Snd23 Type 1 · Member

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    I have recently had some regular tests done, all came back in norm. I am not sure about thyroid, I have read about it but I doubt they tested this.

    Makes sense, I was diagnosed few months ago. I am very worried about this, I could not bare to lose my hair. Its becoming thinner and thinner day by day. I have called my nurse and I am going to arrange an appointment with my GP tomorrow. Maybe there is something I can take in terms of medication to prevent this?

    Thank you very much for the reply. Very helpful.
     
  7. Snd23

    Snd23 Type 1 · Member

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    I really do hope this is the case with my hair too. I have been growing it for seven years! Thank you!
     
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  8. Totto

    Totto Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    If you get extremely tired, have memory loss, high cholesterol, stiff and painful joints, constipation, hair loss, bad nails, depression and a few other things you can start worrying about thyroid problems. Until then, and may it never happen, save your blood test results. Save all of them, including B12,iron, Hb, general blood work etc.
     
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  9. Larissima

    Larissima Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    I had some experience with hair loss due to low, yet within normal ranges, ferritin. The range starts at 11, IIRC, and mine was 15 when I finally got a blood test - the GP explained that it should be around 60-80 for supporting normal hair growth. I got prescribed some iron supplements, and within a month or two the abnormal hair shedding stopped and new hair started growing.

    That was about 7 years ago and unfortunately the same thing started happening this September. This time I knew to ask for a blood test a.s.a.p., and my ferritin was even lower than last time - 12. I'm back on the iron pills, it's been a few weeks but the hair is still shedding (and at hip length those clumps are scary!). I'm hoping that the hair loss will reverse soon.

    My advice is to talk to your GP and see what your blood test uncovers - it could be any one of the things mentioned above, and all of them are reversible. Good luck!
     
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  10. Charlotte1990

    Charlotte1990 Type 1 · Member

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    Hiya, I was diagnosed T1 in April after having symptoms for at least two months before that. My hair started coming out a few weeks before I was diagnosed and carried on for about two months afterwards. It really freaked me out, I would say that I have lost over half of my hair. When I asked the consultant about it she said that it was almost certainly as a result of being so unwell leading up to my diagnosis and referred to it as telogen effluvium. I can't remember all the details, but basically she reassured me that because of the cycle of hair growth it would likely take 2-3 months after starting to feel better before my hair stopped falling out. She was exactly, right and I now have loads of new hair growing through!

    Hopefully things with you will follow a similar course :)
     
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  11. Snd23

    Snd23 Type 1 · Member

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    Thank you so much for the reassuring words! Im going to see my doctor and run some tests just to be sure. Its very scary, simply because it is A LOT of hair loss, happening very fast. I really hope that my hair will get back to normal. I don't think I can deal with any further complications!
     
  12. Diamattic

    Diamattic Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    Sadly I went through this as well... I can't remember if i made a thread on the experience.

    In short, about 2-3 months after diagnosis i was noticing more hair loss then normal, and like many panicked a bit. I went to see a few doctors who did some thyroid tests (thyroid issues go hand and hand with T1D, and also cause hair loss) After the results came back saying i was 'healthy' the doctor told me it is likely due to stress.

    The explaination opened my eyes to actual 'stress hair loss' its not something that happens during a stressful period, its something happens weeks or months after the actual stress occurs.

    I was told that prior to diagnosis my body was under a LOT of stress from high sugars, and this caused more of my hair to enter their 'resting' phase then would normally have. This is essentially the body saying "we cant deal with hair anymore, put them to sleep' Hairs typically fall out following the end of the resting phase which lasts about 6-8 weeks.

    Its a constant cycle where we always have some hair falling out. But the stress causes abnormal amounts to 'rest' and that means weeks or months later abnormal amounts of hair fall out.

    If it is due to stress (likely from the rough time leading up to diagnosis) that hair should grow back, and this period of hair loss will be proportional to the length of time you were undiagnosed and had high sugars.

    I would say - stop brushing or combing it, shower less, stop pulling it, essentially do everything you can do to keep it in there until this passes!
     
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  13. Snd23

    Snd23 Type 1 · Member

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    Thank you so much. This would make a lot of sense. My diagnosis was said to be due to stress. I don't have any history of T1 in my family. I was going through some significant life changes months before my diagnosis. My T1 developed very fast, said to be around 4 weeks before I was taken to hospital in a pre coma condition. My levels were very low at that moment. I am improving, getting tested every three months I have been going down by 20% every test.

    In terms of hair care...my hair is down to my bum and is naturally curly (picture attached to help to understand the struggle!) , brushing and washing it is a must. I think there is very little I can do to reduce 'pulling'. If I stop brushing it daily I will have to chop it off! I am really not willing to do that. Of course, I do understand your point and thank you again for the comment. I am starting to understand why this may be happening now.
     
    #13 Snd23, Oct 15, 2015 at 8:32 PM
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 15, 2015
  14. debsugs

    debsugs Type 1 · Well-Known Member

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    My hair loss led to my diagnosis, I lost handfuls too and what I had left has gone curly! I have had a thyroidectomy but had thyroid levels, iron all check and were ok so have put it down to the high blood sugars. I' now on lantus and novorapid and the hair loss seems to be slowing....yay!
     
  15. LucySW

    LucySW LADA · Well-Known Member

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    Hi. 1) Remember that by the time hair loss shows up, it actually began months ago. 2) low carb or heavy weight loss can cause hair loss (google). But then the hair grows back. So long as this isn't genetic, it should stop. Tho you won't see the good results for six months ..
     
  16. Totto

    Totto Type 2 · Well-Known Member

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    During the decade and a half I was struggling with low thyroid levels my hair got increasingly curly. Since on thyroid meds it's more or less back to normal but still a bit brittle.
     
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