As everyone begins to enjoy the long hot days of summer we bring a stark warning on the importance of paying attention to UV protection. This is true for everyone, but particularly for men in the throes of hair loss for whom a bald patch brings its own set of additional dangers. We look closer. 

 

UV Protection 

We are all aware, to some extent, of the dangers of UV rays from the sun. If you live in a hot climate you will have seen how those powerful rays, from all of 93 million miles away, are capable of destroying all but the most ruggedized of outdoor furniture. A typically bright fabric deckchair in the south of Spain will do well to last into a second year – the colour will be bleached before the stitching slowly disintegrates and the whole thing falls to bits. Those invisible rays are brutal. 

Those same rays are capable of devastating human skin. Severe cases of sunburn are linked to triggering skin cancer. Witness the Australian cricket team taking the field, even when they tour England, coated in Zinc Oxide… not for them a Factor 50 cream, they go for a solution that allows zero UV rays to reach their skin. 

Bald Spot Sunburn

So why the warning on bald spots? There is, of course, the rather obvious starting point that the suns’ rays land directly on top of our heads when we are moving around outdoors. Without the proven protection, trusted for millennia, of hair to protect the skin a bald spot become the easiest place to get burnt. 

So we wear hats or slap on Factor 50, or Zinc if you are Australian. But remove that hat for just 15 minutes and your bald patch can burn. A bald head sweats on hot days, quickly removing any cream and requiring much more regular application than most realize.  Over time, continued exposure to the sun will cause the skin on the scalp will get thinner with immune and regenerative properties diminished. 

Slow Healing

Beyond the increased dangers there is also another downside to having a bald spot. Once burned, the skin on a bald scalp can take much longer to heal. Elsewhere on the body, the skin is regenerated using stem cells. But on the scalp, those stem cells are found in hair follicles. So if you think your sunburned scalp takes a long time to heal, its because it does. 

HIS Hair Clinic

The dangers of UV rays are broadly understood, its a public health message that has been broadcast for a long time now. But the details of just how much more dangerous they are for bald men, the elevated threat of being burnt in the first place along with the difficulties associated with recovery, makes it an even more powerful message for us. 

If you would like to discuss your hair loss situation with one of our team of friendly experts, simply complete our contact form on this page or click here to find your nearest clinic. 

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By Ian Watson

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