Winter is the time of year for flu epidemics, including swine flu. Japanese dermatologists have now found a possibility of developing hair loss after the illness has gone.

Alopecia can be treated and often the hair loss does return but there is no guarantee and it can lead to total baldness. It is an auto-immune disorder that is to say the body attacks its own. The hair follicles are destroyed and this stops new hair from growing. Stress is another cause of the condition and having had flu there will be stress plus a lower immune system as the body has already been fighting the flu virus. Alopecia can be an upsetting condition that can cause a person to be embarrassed particularly for women who generally have a full head of hair short or long. Men with the condition also have the same problems particularly if they are used to a thick head of hair, although society is accepting of a man with a bald head. If you have suffered from flu and find hair is becoming thinner then you need to get the advice of an expert. With help early on there may be ways to halt the receding hair. Each case has to be assessed differently because there is not just one cause to hair loss and it might well be a mixture of reasons. Finding the cause is the first step. Stress can be a cause as can anxiety, medication and a number of illnesses. If the body’s immune system is low because of an illness or medication to combat the illness it can cause the onset of alopecia. Unfortunately there is nothing to stop this happening but the hair does normally grow back and does not need further treatment. If it does not grow then there is an ointment or pill that can help before thoughts of surgery. It is important to look after hair as it is fragile and can easily be broken. There are natural remedies that whilst not proven to improve the condition people have said it helps. Use an oil such as coconut oil and gently massage into the scalp and hair. Wrap in a towel for a while and then wash out with a good shampoo. For dry brittle hair the oil will put some moisture in the ends. Having a regular trim also helps as dead ends that are taking some of the goodness will be cut off. If swine flu is contracted, it is important to keep plenty of fluids going so as not to dehydrate which has a big effect on the skin and hair. It is difficult when ill to eat properly and so there can be a chance of hair loss especially if added to other conditions.

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By Damien

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