Traction Alopecia a specific type of hair loss caused by hair styles that puts tension on the hair and scalp. This tension can be seen particularly along the hair line..
So, what are these hair styles?
1. Slick tight buns.
These hair styles are commonly worn by dancers, gymnasts, and women in general, as a go to everyday style or an elegant look for a special occasion. However, the increased pulling, brushing, and tension of the perfect slick back bun can cause thinning and loss of hair.
2. Tight braids
Braids such as cornrows, braids using extensions, and twists using extensions are often used as protective styles especially during the harsh winter months and for busy women who are looking for a get up and go hairstyle. To obtain these styles, there is pulling to gather up the small fine hairs at the front and sides of the head which can cause hair loss that may not grow back.
3. Tight roller sets.
Looking for the perfect curls can cause stylists to pull and tug to get all the hairs into a roller set. This can cause hair to break off at the root.
Wigs also can cause hair loss. It’s due to the friction of the wig on the front and sides of the head.
There are ways to prevent hair thinning and loss.
1. Decrease the amount of pull, brushing, combing to the front and sides of your scalp.
2. If your hair is in a tight bun or if you normally wear wigs during the day. Let your hair loose during the evening and overnight.
3. Save the high manipulation hair style for certain occasions. Put your hair in a low tension, low maintenance protective hair style to decrease the stress placed on the hair.
4. If you are experiencing abnormal hair loss. Talk with your doctor about checking for medical conditions that cause hair loss.
If you are still experiencing hair thinning and hair loss, did you know that your own blood can treat your hair loss?
This treatment is called Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP). PRP takes your blood, spin it down to isolate the plasma containing platelets. Platelets containing many growth factors that can help stimulate your scalp to grow hair. It is a great option if you do not want to use medications or medications are not effective or you do not what to pay for costly hair transplant. The treatment is done in a doctor’s office with little to no side effects. Hair growth can be seen as early as 1 month; however, 3-4 months of treatment is recommended.
The first and best treatment for hair loss due to Traction Alopecia is prevention.
Second, treat any underlying medical causes of hair loss.
Third, if you are still experiencing hair loss, PRP is a safe and next best option.
Why Does My Child Athlete Need a Sports Physical?
Here are my top 4 main objectives in performing sports physicals.
Why does my child athlete require a sports physical? This question may seem self-explanatory but its importance lies mainly in the safety of the athlete. Many parents do not really understand why sports physicals are required or why certain questions or exams are done during the sports physical.
Sports physicals are physical exams performed yearly for children interested in playing sports either for a school or club team. The goal of a sports physical is to maximize the safety for sports participation.
Performing sports physical is one of my favorite parts of being a primary care sports medicine physician. This may be because I myself was a youth athlete and understand the dedication children put towards the sports they enjoy. It is during this time I can talk with the athlete about their sport of choice, concerns, and provide encouragement.
With that said, I also want to make sure they are healthy medically and physically to participate. Here are my top 4 focus areas when I perform sports physicals:
1. Is the athlete medically and physically capable of participating in sports?This includes review of the vital signs, particularly blood pressure and heart rate. In addition, vision will also be checked, so remember to bring your child’s glasses for the exam. Furthermore, a review of past medical history, performing a complete medical exam, and a full musculoskeletal assessment.
2. Does the athlete have risk factors for sudden cardiac death?Although hearing the phrase “Sudden Cardiac Death” can be frightening, thankfully it is a rare occurrence. With that said, I do take the time to do the proper cardiac testing and screening. I identifying risk factors by asking specific questions relevant to the heart and circulatory system. For example, a common historical question to address is if there is a history of a heart murmur. If so, how and when was it addressed? If I identify any abnormalities, I must ensure the athlete’s safety which may involve follow up with a specialist such as a cardiologist for clearance to participate in sports.
3. Are there any previous musculoskeletal injuries? As a board certified sports medicine specialist, I pay particular attention in reviewing previous musculoskeletal injuries. Sometimes athletes have previous injuries not well rehabbed that turn into nagging recurrent pain. This can lead to further injuries or inability to reach maximum performance and beyond. By identifying these injuries, implementing a proper treatment plan will successfully rehabilitate back to optimum physical performance. It is always better to rehab as soon as possible even if it is at the beginning of a sports season. Last thing I would want is an athlete that has to stop sports participation in mid-season due to an old injury not properly rehabbed.
4. Why is the athlete participating in this sport? Many youth athletes have goals of playing a sport in college and/or for a professional team. Some play a sport for fun. Others may join a sport to lose weight. Knowing the WHY helps me to provide guidance, health lessons, and encouragement.
The goal is always the safety of the athlete so they can enjoy and perform their sports to the best of their abilities.
Dr. Christina Hector
Dr. Hector and Dr. Mitchell are physicians dedicated to maximizing the patient experience in today's healthcare system. Both are available for speaking engagements to teach vital healthcare utilization issues. To find out more contact them HERE.
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