How Swimming Affects Your Body: Benefits and Risks | GETTIK

How Swimming Affects Your Body: Benefits and Risks | GETTIK

How Does Swimming Affect Your Body?

Individuals swim for a variety of reasons including recreation, competition, and health. Regardless of the reason, swimming can affect your body in a variety of ways — both good and bad.

A Low-Impact Sport

Swimming is a low-impact sport. Low-impact exercise can be good for the body because it offers the same health benefits as physically demanding, high-impact exercise without the stress and intensity placed on the body. Many individuals cannot take the impact that exercises or sports put on the body, so low-impact options offer low-weight bearing alternatives — such as swimming, dancing, yoga. High-impact activities offer great benefits, but they can also place additional stress and pressure on joints, muscles, and the body overall.

Physical Health Benefits

Swimming is associated with a variety of health benefits. Swimming utilizes all parts of the body, and an hour of swimming is comparable to an hour of running without the stress on your body. Since swimming is low-impact, almost all individuals can participate. Below are some of the health benefits of swimming:

 

  • Improved flexibility: When you swim you reach, stretch, turn, and pull your body through the water. In doing so, your body can become increasingly flexible. Most swimmers also stretch pre- and post-swim for extra flexibility.
  • Increased endurance: As you make swimming a routine, you should start to see your endurance improve.
  • Stronger lungs: Swimming requires proper breathing techniques. By performing aerobic exercises, you are activating large muscle groups that require large amounts of oxygen to perform. By activating these large muscle groups, you can work to increase lung capacity and strength.
  • Good for asthma: Holding your breath, expanding your lungs, and gaining control over your breathing can help reduce asthma symptoms. The humid environment of indoor pools may also help people with asthma.
  • Helps maintain a healthy weight: Aerobic exercise helps keep the heart rate up and burns calories. This can help individuals maintain a healthy weight.
  • Tones muscles and builds strength: Swimming utilizes all of the muscles in the body. You are constantly working to keep your body above water and moving forward. When you do this, you are burning calories, and working direct muscle groups to help improve definition and muscle strength.

Mental Health Benefits

According to Mindwise, swimming can boost your mental health because when you swim, your body releases endorphins to your brain that increase positivity, well-being, and happiness. When this happens, you are prone to improved moods, decreased levels of depression and anxiety, and decreased cognitive decline. When you work out, you may burn calories and improve muscle tone. When you see these positive results, your self-esteem can be boosted, and high-self esteem can bolster a variety of mental health benefits.

Potential Risks of Swimming

Just like most anything, there are potential risks that you expose yourself to when swimming. This is especially true for daily swimmers and competitive swimmers. The primary risks of swimming include water illness, hair loss, and headaches.

Water Illnesses

According to the CDC, Recreational Water Illnesses (RWIs) refer to the infections that are passed through germs that are present in the water you swim in. RWIs can also be caused by improper chemicals in water, or chemicals that evaporate from the water that taint air quality in aquatic facilities. They are spread by consumption of or contact with contaminated water in pools, hot tubs, water parks, interactive fountains, lakes, rivers, or oceans. RWI infections include:

 

  • Diarrheal illness;
  • Rashes;
  • Ear infections;
  • Respiratory infections;
  • Chemical irritation (eyes, lungs).

Tight Swim Caps and Goggles

Tight swim caps and tight goggles can cause a variety of issues for the head — specifically the temples, hair, and scalp. Tight swims caps and goggles have the following risks:

 

  • General rubbing/discomfort: In order to work properly, swim caps and goggles need to be pulled tight. By doing this, you create a good amount of pressure on your skull, temples, and eyes;
  • “Swimmer’s headache,” or supraorbital neuralgia: In a case studied by John C. O’Brien (MD), a young swimmer felt painful hair and tenderness surrounding his supraorbital nerve that turned out to be supraorbital neuralgia;
  • Hair loss/thinning: When you force your hair into an unnatural position — such as putting your hair up, tucking your hair into a hat, or wearing a swim cap — you increase your chances of hair loss, thinning, and traction alopecia.

 

Swimming without caps and goggles can seem impossible — especially for those with long or sensitive hair, or competitive swimmers. There are several ways to mitigate or reduce the issues:

 

Competitive Swimming

Competitive swimming is a popular sport, but more and more medical staff are needing to provide medical care for swimmers. Additional to the risks of swimming that are listed above, competitive swimmers are at risk for:

 

  • Musculoskeletal overuse injuries;
  • Overtraining;
  • Respiratory issues;
  • Dermatologic conditions.

How To Live a Healthy Lifestyle: Tips and Tricks | GETTIK

How To Live a Healthy Lifestyle: Tips and Tricks | GETTIK

Lifestyle Tips For Better Overall Health

The way you go about your daily life has a massive and direct impact on your wellbeing. Nearly everything, from what and when you eat to how many hours you work in a day, can influence your health. However, as many as 97.3% of American adults do not live a healthy lifestyle, which has frightening implications for long-term health outcomes and overall longevity.

Fortunately, your lifestyle is based entirely on your individual choices. You have the power to make changes and take control of your health. Whether you’re looking to completely overhaul your lifestyle or find new ways to keep improving, there are a few adjustments you can make to your lifestyle for better overall health:

Eat Healthy Foods

The food you eat plays a huge role in your wellbeing. Your diet can affect virtually every aspect of your short- and long-term health, from your mental health to your risk of developing certain diseases and chronic conditions. Your diet can even affect your hair,potentially causing it to fall out or promoting its growth. Because your diet is so significant to your wellbeing, it’s crucial to eat nutritious foods so your mind and body have all of the power they need to function optimally. 

A balanced diet full of nutritious foods looks different from person to person, depending on lifestyle, current health needs, and future health goals. Generally, you should focus on getting as much nutrition from your diet as possible, being mindful of your cravings, limiting your intake of heavily processed foods, and avoiding potentially dangerous fad diets. For many people, this involves eating more fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and lean sources of protein. Always take your specific dietary needs and preferences into account, as what works for someone else may not work for you.

Stay Hydrated

Everyone needs water just to survive, but drinking the right amount of water can help you thrive. Staying properly hydrated has myriad benefits, such as boosting your mood and helping with weight loss. Dehydration, on the other hand, can have negative health consequences, including headaches and migraines, constipation, and decreased cognitive function. In severe cases of dehydration, you may even need medical attention. 

It can be difficult to know exactly how much water you should drink each day to stay hydrated. There is no single answer, as the amount of water you drink will likely vary from day to day, depending on factors like the weather or your level of activity. It’s commonly said that you should drink eight eight-ounce glasses of water per day, but that is an average. Try to drink something whenever you feel thirsty throughout the course of the day.

Exercise Regularly

Regular exercise is another way to improve your overall health and wellbeing. Its physical health benefits include increased muscle strength and bone density, pain reduction, and lowered risk of developing chronic diseases. Exercise also has a number of effects on mental health, such as improved mood, increased energy levels, and boosted cognitive function. Additionally, regular exercise can increase your life expectancy, possibly by several years.

To benefit from exercising, you don’t need to commit to a serious workout or spend hours per day at the gym. Any amount of physical activity, regardless of the level of intensity or duration, can be good for you. Further, try to find a form of exercise that you actually like to do, as this makes it easier to incorporate it into your routine. For example, swimming has countless health benefits, but if you dread going to the pool, you may forgo exercising altogether because of how much you dislike it. Exercise shouldn’t be a chore —  ideally, it should be a fun way to take care of yourself and improve your health.

Go Outdoors

The world around you has a huge impact on your wellbeing; even the weather outside can affect you physically, mentally, and socially. A growing body of research suggests there are many ways being outside can benefit your health, including lowering your risk of developing chronic conditions, improving the duration and quality of sleep, and reducing feelings of stress and anxiety. There also appears to be a synergistic effect when humans exercise in nature, leading to greater stress reduction, improved physical performance while exercising, and increased mood and self-esteem. However, you don’t have to exercise outdoors, as simply sitting or spending time in nature can still provide these benefits. 

Conversely, not going outdoors can pose risks to your wellbeing. Whether for work or school, many people spend much of their time inside, but doing so may have the opposite effects of going outdoors, especially when it comes to your mood. If you have to spend most of your time inside, make an effort to incorporate outdoors time into your schedule. Going for short walks, eating lunch outdoors, or biking to work are simple ways you can get outside on a daily basis.

Get Plenty of Sleep

Sleep is just as important to your health as eating a balanced diet or exercising regularly, but as many as one-third of American adults don’t get enough sleep. Sleep deprivation has short-term health consequences that can interfere with your daily life, such as impairing your judgment and affecting your memory. There are also long-term issues that can come from chronic sleep deprivation, including being at greater risk of developing mental illness and overall poor quality of life.

Generally, adults need between seven and nine hours of rest each night, but the actual amount of sleep you need can vary depending on a number of factors like your age and current state of health. If you have a medical condition or illness that interferes with your sleep, you may need to consult your doctor for a solution. Otherwise, prioritize sleep as much as possible. Exercising regularly, being mindful of your caffeine intake, and going to bed at the same time every night are all simple but effective ways that can make it easier to fall and stay asleep.

Balance Work and Life

Finally, do your best to find a balance between your work and your personal life. Work is important, but so is enjoying your life, your hobbies, and your personal relationships. If you are constantly focused on or stressed out about work, you may disregard these other areas of your life. This deprives you of the opportunity to unwind and can result in chronic feelings of stress, both at work and at home. 

Chronic or long-term stress can also have negative effects on your mind and body, including anxiety, depression, heart problems, skin issues, and hair loss. You can always talk to a doctor or the appropriate specialist about treating your symptoms — for instance, consulting a trichologist about your hair loss or seeing a mental health professional to treat anxiety — but the root cause of your stress will still be an issue. Neglecting to address the source of your stress may end up making these symptoms worse or long-term problems in and of themselves. This is why it’s necessary to set boundaries for yourself between your work and your personal life: to prevent these problems from developing in the first place.

When it comes to improving your health, the most important thing you can do is find ways to adjust your lifestyle that work well for you. It’s your health and wellbeing, and you’re the only person who knows what’s best for you. 

How Does An Infection Start and What Are Its Effects? | GETTIK

How Does An Infection Start and What Are Its Effects? | GETTIK

How Do Infections Work and What Are Their Effects on the Body?

From Hippocrates’s writings about the spread of disease by air, water, and places, to Egyptian papyrus paintings depicting polio, infections have been recorded throughout the ages. Epidemics we’ve experienced include syphilis, leprosy, cholera, yellow fever, typhoid fever, smallpox, and plague, among other infectious diseases.

Modern medicine has largely been able to help prevent and control the spread of infectious disease by means of vaccines, as well as through public health education and prevention. Nevertheless, an infection can still result in a number of unwanted bodily effects ranging from fever and vomiting to hair loss and weight gain.

How Do You Get an Infection?

Infections can occur when microscopic living organisms enter your body and begin to multiply. Humans may contract an infection by contact with other people, animals, through the air, soil, surfaces, or through contaminated food or drinking water. The body then reacts in its own unique ways. 

An infection can result in any number of illnesses ranging from benign to fatal. Hosts with a well-functioning immune system can usually fight off the infection. Medications can also be prescribed as treatment.

Bacteria 

Humans and bacteria have a complex relationship. While bacteria are needed to aid in our digestion, give our bodies vitamins, or curdle milk into yogurt, these microscopic organisms can also give rise to life-threatening illnesses. 

Found in the human gut, soil, and water, humans can be exposed to bacteria from other people, through the environment, or from eating contaminated food, or by drinking contaminated water. Most bacteria will not hurt you, but the destructive kind can cause dangerous infections such as pneumonia and strep throat.

Bacterial strains may evolve suddenly and rapidly.

Virus

Viruses are spread through the transmission of virus particles, whether that be through direct person-to-person contact or indirect person-to-object, object-to-person contact. Unlike bacteria, viruses do not reproduce on their own. Only upon entering healthy, living cells do viruses go into action. Hijacking the cells’ metabolic machinery, they begin reproducing exponentially. These submicroscopic infections destroy healthy cells. Viruses have mostly pathogenic relationships with their hosts, causing a range of illnesses such as the common cold, meningitis, and HIV/AIDS. 

Fungi

Similar to many microbes, fungi can be both good and bad for the human body. Found in soil, on plants, on indoor surfaces, and on human skin, fungi are practically everywhere. 

Despite the millions of fungi that exist in the world, only about 300 fungi cause infections that can lead to illness. Fungal skin infections typically develop in warm, moist areas of the body such as on the feet, groin, or other folds of skin. The lack of airflow in these areas can cause fungi to thrive. Types of fungal infections include athlete’s foot, ringworm, and thrush.

Parasites

Parasites are organisms that live off of hosts in order to survive. The three main types of parasites include protozoa, helminths, and ectoparasites. Parasitic infections are typically contracted in tropical and subtropical regions of the world. Among the various types of parasitic infections are sepsis, malaria, and giardia. 

The Body’s Response To Infection

Many of the typical responses we see in our body upon infection result from the immune system’s efforts to fight off foreign invaders. Fever, malaise, and inflammation are all signs that our immune systems are working hard to eliminate an infection. 

Below is information on how the different bodily systems react:

The Circulatory System

An organ system that is known to circulate and transport nutrients, hormones, and blood cells to and from the cells of the body, the circulatory system is essential to fighting illness. Many diseases affect the circulatory system. Influenza, for instance, affects this system by making breathing difficult, the heart beat faster, raising blood pressure, and increasing inflammation in the body.

A healthy heart can usually fight off infection quite well. However, the flu shot, or other preventative vaccines, are typically recommended for anybody regardless of wellbeing, age, or predisposition to disease. 

The Endocrine System

The endocrine system is made up of various glands producing and secreting hormones to regulate body temperature, growth, and metabolism. Viral or bacterial infections may cause adverse effects to the thyroid, one of the main organs in the endocrine system. 

Disorders causing inflammation in this gland are referred to as “thyroiditis.” Other signs of thyroiditis include weight gain, hair loss, dry skin, and fatigue. Thyroiditis can usually be treated with over-the-counter anti-inflammatories and beta-blockers; less common treatments include antithyroid medication, radioactive iodine, and surgery. Many treatment plans also include a healthy diet, regular exercise, and consistent sleeping patterns. 

Integumentary System

The integumentary system is responsible for all things related to the skin, as well as the hair and nails. This system is vulnerable to various types of infections, such as cold sores, acne, boils, warts, and ringworm. “Ringworm” is a misnomer in the sense that fungus causes the infection, and not a worm; however, “ring” refers to the circular rash it leaves on the skin. This fungal infection can ultimately result in hair loss, leading people to try hair growth products and hair fiber thickening solutions

The Muscular System

The body’s muscular system can experience mild to severe side effects of infectious diseases. Referred to as myositis, the muscles in the body react with inflammation in an attempt to heal itself. Some viruses and bacteria may directly invade the body’s muscles. Viruses are the most likely type of infection to have effects on the muscular system. Bacteria, fungal, and parasitic infections are less common. 

Although known better as an immunodeficiency virus, HIV is one example of an infection that causes adverse effects to the muscles. If left untreated, HIV can lead to AIDS. Treatment of myositis varies according to cause and severity. 

The Nervous System

Infections of the central nervous system impact the brain and spinal cord, which control all of our bodily functions, including awareness, movements, sensations, thoughts, speech, and memory. An infection of the central nervous system can cause drowsiness, confusion, and convulsions, among other side effects. Types of infections known for their impact on the central nervous system include meningitis, encephalitis, syphilis, and Lyme disease, among other types.

The Respiratory System

Respiratory infection is potentially the most well-known type of infection. Resulting in illnesses such as the common cold, the flu, sinusitis, tonsillitis, pharyngitis, bronchitis, pneumonia, and SARS-CoV-2, respiratory infections are commonly found in humans and mostly affect our lungs, noses, ears, and throats. In fact, these infections are a leading cause for seeking medical care. Side effects of a respiratory infection can range from mild to severe and may include trouble breathing, a runny nose, fever, or sore throat.

How Do You Get Rid of an Infection?

Treatment depends on the type of infection you have, as well as its severity. For a mild illness, rest and fluids usually do the trick. More severe illnesses, on the other hand, will likely need medical attention followed by a treatment plan. Treatments for bacterial infections typically include antibiotics, while viral infections may be treated with antivirals. Fungal infections are treated with antifungals, whereas parasites are treated with antiparasitics.  

Measures can also be taken to prevent an infection from occurring in the first place. This can include measures such as receiving vaccinations, cleaning cuts and scrapes, and social distancing during a pandemic. 

Many vaccines exist today, and they can help reduce your chances of being infected with a variety of illnesses. For instance, the CDC strongly recommends people get a seasonal flu shot as part of their defense against influenza. Cleaning cuts and scrapes, on the other hand, can help prevent infections by removing as many foreign materials from the body as possible.

How Does Weather Impact Our Lives and Health? | GETTIK

How Does Weather Impact Our Lives and Health? | GETTIK

How The Weather Can Affect Your Health

The weather may not only affect your daily life — it can also affect your health. From seasonal environmental changes to temperature shifts, the weather may play a role in health symptoms with direct or indirect physical, mental, and social effects.

Physical Effects

Environmental changes in weather and temperature may affect humans in many ways, this may include seasonal allergy triggers as the world around us begins to bloom, or temperature-triggered, cold-induced asthma. Other infections and their effects on the body may change, such as fortified flu viruses in cold weather that may become more easily transmittable.

Some are also affected when it is cold outside, noting that their joints hurt. Seasonal aches and pains in muscles and joints are theorized to be a response to changes in barometric pressure that may cause inflammation in tendons, muscles, and tissues. There are many ways that changes in the weather can affect the body, from biological changes in the body to changes in behaviors.

Colds and Flu

Though it is possible to get the common cold or the flu year-round, there is the well-known cold and flu season that strikes primarily in winter, but may also stretch late fall through early spring. Three notable theories on why the flu is more common in the winter include:

  • People spending more time in indoor, confined spaces with less air circulation, and with others who may have the virus.
  • Lowered levels of vitamin D and melatonin which may compromise immune systems and the ability to fight off the virus.
  • The virus itself may survive better and could be more easily transmitted in colder, drier climates.

Other common winter illnesses that may be triggered by cold, dry weather may include acute bronchitis, chronic bronchitis, pneumonia, and whooping cough. Preventative measures against winter illnesses may include washing hands thoroughly and regularly, avoiding crowds if possible, and staying home if you are ill to prevent the spread of illness to others.

Heart and Circulation

The chill of winter can challenge your heart and circulation. Cold weather can trigger a bodily response to keep as much warmth as possible close to vital organs, which can result in the restriction of tiny blood vessels in the limbs of the body. This restriction may increase strain on the heart as it works to circulate blood and overcome the resistance from restricted vessels. While these occurrences may not impede those with a healthy circulatory system, those with histories of heart disease may be at greater risk. 

Studies have shown that heat waves also create a challenge for the cardiovascular system to regulate body temperature. Drastic changes in weather like extremes in heat and cold may have health effects that impact the body’s ability to regulate itself, causing increased stress to cope with environmental factors and susceptibility to illness or exacerbated chronic disease issues. 

Reducing the risk of cardiovascular and circulation issues due to weather changes may include avoiding vigorous physical activity, staying hydrated, and wearing weather-appropriate clothing.

Skin and Hair

Skin and hair may also be subject to seasonal influence. Seasonal changes may bring increases or decreases in temperature and humidity that may affect the skin’s ability to regulate filaggrin proteins and corneocyte surface texture. Filaggrin are proteins that help maintain the skin’s barrier function. Filaggrin and corneocyte cells — the cells on the outermost part of the skin’s epidermis — are affected by climate and seasonal changes. This may increase the risk of eczema, psoriasis, and dry, irritated skin from low temperatures and low humidity, which may affect the skin cell’s ability to naturally moisturize. 

Seasonal changes may also affect hair growth, which can also result in seasonal shedding and complaints of hair loss. Hair loss can also be associated with wearing tight-fitting hats, as found in studies performed on nurse’s cap alopecia, which concluded that wearing tight-fitting hats may cause localized hair loss. Hats are often employed during summer months to protect from the sun, so ensuring that head-ware properly fits and doesn’t constrict blood flow or irritate hair follicles may help alleviate symptoms.

Other ways to mitigate skin and hair follicle irritation from changing environmental factors may include utilizing thickening agents or hair growth products such as vitamins or moisturizers. There are also a few options to help alleviate dry skin in winter or sunburned skin in summer. Utilizing sunscreen and wearing sun-protective clothing can protect the skin from sunburn. Moisturizing skin and using aloe vera lotion can help soothe burned skin. Moisturizing during winter, using a humidifier indoors, and using lukewarm water to bathe can help protect natural skin oils and keep skin moisturized.

Mental Effects

The influence of weather on mood variability is well recognized. Evidence shows that the weather, including daylight, has an effect on the normal range of daily mood fluctuations. Better moods are typically associated with less precipitation, absence of fog, and lower atmospheric pressure. There are also mental health benefits associated with natural environments, which can be more accessible with mild weather and climates.

Circadian Rhythm

Circadian rhythms are the natural internal processes that regulate a person’s sleep and wake cycle. Changes in daylight and season can alter sleep habits and activities, though it does not change the amount of sleep one needs. While less daylight in winter may affect circadian rhythms and sleep cycles, it is important to remember that excess sleep is not needed. Though the visual cues of light and darkness may encourage lethargy, sleepiness, or notable changes in mood, it is important to continue regulating a 24-hour cycle of rest and awakedness. To encourage regular sleep cycles in the winter, attempt to increase exposure to light, and maintain physical activity during the day.

General Mood

The influence of weather on subjective well-being can greatly impact mood. Weather patterns such as high and low temperatures, sun exposure, and rain can all impact the mood and feelings of happiness. Seasonal variations in physical activity can also have implications for human health. As weather patterns change seasonally, physical activity may also increase or decrease. Physical exercise can improve mental health by reducing anxiety, stress, depression and negative moods. Exercise can also increase self-esteem and cognitive function. It is important to maintain physical activity and other general lifestyle tips for better overall health throughout the year to reduce the physical and psychological impacts of stress. Adapt to temperature by wearing clothing suitable for the weather and outdoor activity. Utilize indoor and temperature-controlled gyms and pools to reap the health benefits of swimming and exercising.

SAD

Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is a type of depression or depressive episodes that correlate with the change of the seasons. More often it occurs in the late fall and winter, but some experience depressive episodes in the summer. Symptoms may include feelings of depression, low self-esteem, trouble sleeping, and may sometimes include frequent thoughts of death or suicide. SAD is often treated by a medical professional and may include the use of medication, light therapy, psychotherapy, and vitamin D. 

Social Effects

Climate change can have a variety of effects on mental health. Increased exposure to heat may increase aggressive behaviors. Heatwaves have been associated with increases in mental and behavioral disorders in addition to cardiovascular and renal illness, as well as feelings of psychological and physical exhaustion. The effects of changing weather on public health may also take a toll through environmental degradation, resource depletion, impacts on food production, an increase inf air pollution, as well as potential environmentally-induced migration or population dislocation. Reducing actions that contribute to climate change, as well as planning and preparing for changing weather patterns and changes to the environment, may help to alleviate social and economic stresses that impact human and public health.

Food Systems

Climate impact on agriculture and food supplies includes access to food as well as socio-economic impacts from disruption to the economy. Impacts on crops may include:

  • Elevated levels of Co2 in the atmosphere can increase plant growth, and/or disrupt and create nutrient deficiencies in crops, resulting in less nutrient-dense foods.
  • Extreme changes in temperature and precipitation can reduce yields or prevent crops from growing.
  • Potential drought conditions may challenge water availability for crops.

Impacts on livestock may include:

 

  • Heat waves that may cause heat stress and increase vulnerability to disease, reduced fertility, and reduced milk production.
  • Droughts may threaten pasture and feeding supplies for livestock.
  • Changing seasons may allow for some pathogens and parasites to survive more easily, increasing the risk of parasites and diseases that affect livestock.
  • Increased atmospheric Co2 can cause the nutrient density of crops to decrease, increasing the demand for feed to meet nutritional needs.

Water Access

Weather and climate extremes impact air and water quality, contribute to negative economic impacts, and ultimately are bad for human health. Heatwaves, droughts, wildfires, cold waves, snowfall, and flooding may all affect water and air quality. Flooding can also increase the opportunity for the overflow of contaminants from industrial, agricultural, and urban areas to other bodies of water, impacting access to clean water.

What Causes Hair Loss in Women? | GETTIK

What Causes Hair Loss in Women? | GETTIK

Why Is My Hair Falling Out? 5 Causes of Hair Loss in Women

While going through your morning routine and brushing your hair, it’s possible you may notice more hair left in your brush than you’re used to. Some hair loss is normal, but if you begin to notice signs of balding — including overall thinning at the top of your head, notable bald spots, or clumps of hair falling out — it can leave you feeling alarmed and distressed. These feelings can seriously impact your self-image and confidence.

Hair loss can often be thought of as a strictly male condition, but a large percentage of those who experience it are women. In fact, as noted in research published in Clinical Interventions in Aging, just under half of all women go through life with a full head of hair. Nevertheless, the perception that hair loss only affects males can leave women impacted by it in a difficult situation.

There are many different causes of hair loss in women, and addressing the situation requires identifying which apply to you. This article will discuss five of the most common causes of hair loss, then provide advice on mitigating them. Read on to learn how you can take control of this condition.

Certain Hairstyles

Anyone who has worn a ponytail for a long period of time knows about the annoyance of “ponytail headaches.” However, it’s important to understand that the constant pulling associated with a hairstyle like this may lead to hair loss. This is because certain hairstyles can cause traction alopecia — a form of hair loss caused by pulling of the scalp, which weakens the hair root and follicle.

There are many signs that your hairstyle is causing too much stress on your hair. These include:

  • Hair loss, sometimes resulting in a receding hairline;
  • Signs of thin or broken hair in areas where your hair is tied;
  • Small pimples or ulcers on your scalp, often at the base of where your hair is tied;
  • Itching or redness on your scalp;
  • Scarred skin on your scalp (these areas may look “shiny”).

Avoid These Hairstyles to Prevent Hair Loss

 To avoid this type of hair loss, consider changing up your hairstyle and avoid putting undue stress on your hair follicles. Tight ponytails, braids, or buns can lead to traction alopecia. The excessive use of hair extensions, wefts, or clip-ins can also cause hair loss over time.

The way you take care of your hair can also impact your hair health. Brush rollers, when applied too tightly, can cause alopecia. Even regular brushing can cause hair loss if done too vigorously.

Instead of regularly doing the above, try to find alternative ways to style your hair. Women with straight hair can simply wear it behind or over their shoulders, and loose braids are still not out of the question. Those with curly hair might try wearing their hair naturally. These are only a few examples of your options going forward.

If you’ve experienced notable hair loss, you might find that your styling options are limited. In this case, it can be wise to invest in hair growth shampoo or hair thickening fibers. These can improve the appearance of your hair and widen your hairstyling options.

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Dietary Issues

A poor diet can lead to malnutrition. This refers to deficiencies in your vitamin and mineral intake that can lead to major side effects like weak muscles and bones, a compromised immune system, and hair loss.

Are you starting to experience hair loss? It may be time to assess your diet for any gaps in your caloric, protein, vitamin, and mineral intake. Nutrients that are associated with hair health include:

  • Protein;
  • Calories;
  • Antioxidants;
  • Biotin;
  • Selenium;
  • Vitamin A (though too much can cause hair loss);
  • Vitamin C;
  • Vitamin D.

Get All the Vitamins and Minerals You Need for Hair Health

In order to address this cause of hair loss, it can help to ensure you’re getting a well-rounded diet, complete with the nutrition you need to mitigate the effects of hair loss. This means a diet rich in natural foods — primarily high-fiber carbs, fruits, veggies, and lean meats. Ensure that you are getting enough food each day and that you’re limiting junk foods.

Seek to include foods with nutrients that you’ve neglected. For instance, androgenetic alopecia and telogen effluvium, two conditions commonly associated with female pattern baldness, may be mitigated with increased intake of vitamin D, according to research. Foods high in this vitamin, like dairy products, fatty fish, or eggs, are useful additions to your diet to address this issue. Most multivitamins include this as well.

Of course, it’s always wise to discuss any dietary changes with your doctor. It may be beneficial to consult with your physician or nutritionist to discuss appropriate diet changes or supplements to address this issue. They may be able to help you assess your diet, identify gaps in your vitamin/mineral intake, and determine which foods or supplements may be able to help you maintain optimal hair health.

Extreme Stress

It’s not uncommon for women to experience some degree of hair loss after stressful events. This is evident in women who have undergone traumatic events such as giving birth (though hormonal changes are also to blame for this) or experiencing abuse.

To glean why this occurs, it’s important to understand how hair grows. Human hair follicles undergo several phases throughout their lifecycle. It starts in its anagen phase — the longest phase at up to seven years and also the time during which your hair grows in length. This is followed by a transition phase and a resting phase. Finally, it sheds during its exogen phase, which occurs to roughly 100 hairs each day for the average human.

Stress disrupts this cycle. According to an article published in The Atlantic titled “Why Stress Makes Your Hair Fall Out:

“Stress is thought to disrupt this process, prematurely kicking hairs out of the growth period. Rather than leaving anagen at their own pace, they all go through the resting phase at the same time and fall out together in bigger numbers — up to 10 times more than usual … “

Stress can, as a result of this disruption, cause several different types of hair loss, including telogen effluvium, alopecia areata, and trichotillomania.

Follow These Stress-Management Tips

While some level of stress is inevitable in life, there are a few ways you can reduce stress during and after traumatic periods:

  • Exercise regularly: When we are stressed, our brains are telling our bodies that we need to act. This results in a prolonged fight-or-flight response with no method of release, which can dramatically worsen the symptoms of stress. Physical activity allows us to release this energy.
  • Practice gratitude: Feeling grateful can alleviate feelings of anxiety that accompany stress. Take some time each day to create a list of things you are grateful for, then reflect on it.
  • Improve your diet: In addition to handling any potential nutritional deficiencies — a potential cause of hair loss, as discussed above — a balanced diet can decrease feelings of nervousness and sadness.

These are just a few of the methods you can employ to manage stress and, hopefully, mitigate its potential impacts on your hair health.

Toxins or Medications

Certain toxins, medications, or medical procedures can also lead to hair loss. In certain circumstances, hair loss is an expected side effect, as is the case with many individuals who undergo chemotherapy.

There are many types of drugs that may cause hair loss, and WebMD has a comprehensive list of them. Among the items on this list, you’ll find:

There are many more examples, and each has been linked to hair loss in some instances, though further research is required to understand why this is the case.

Finding Alternative Medications

Hair loss can be an alarming symptom, but it is vital to discuss your symptoms with your physician before discontinuing the use of certain medications. Maintain an ongoing dialogue with your doctor about symptoms as they occur; keeping a log of your side effects is a useful practice for this purpose. Your doctor may also be able to help you determine whether your hair loss is indeed related to the medication in question. If it is, they should be able to work with you to discover an alternative medication that does not cause hair loss.

Heredity

If the cause of your hair loss is not associated with one of the above factors, it may be connected to your genetics. If your family has a history of hair loss, you may also be susceptible to it. This is a diagnosable condition, so it’s important to bring this up with your doctor.

One of the most common forms of hair loss is due to hereditary-pattern baldness. This is a natural condition caused by a combination of genetic, hormone, and age-related factors. This type of baldness starts with thinning hair, then progresses over time to complete hair loss. For women, the most common place for hair loss to occur on the top of the head, down the middle — it may appear that the part of your hair is widening.

How to Address Hair Loss Due to Your Genes

While this cause of hair loss if out of your control, you can still take action to mitigate its effects. Certain medications, such as minoxidil, can slow further hair loss. There are also many professional hair thickening products that can keep your hair looking and feeling healthy, even if your genetics are working against you.

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Unexpected Side Effects of Weight Loss | GETTIK

Unexpected Side Effects of Weight Loss | GETTIK

4 Weight Loss Side Effects Most People Don’t Expect

Whether you’re starting a weight loss journey or you’re in the middle of one, you’re probably focussed on achieving an end goal — whether that be a number on the scale, the ability to run a marathon, or seeing certain health benefits. However, what you might not hear about as much is what happens to your body after weight loss. Once you’ve reached your goal, what can you expect? Below are four side effects of weight loss that may shape the end of your journey.

Loose Skin

Loose or excess skin can be a side effect of weight loss, especially for those who have gone through significant weight loss, either due to surgery or as a potential side effect of certain treatments like chemotherapy. Loose skin can be a serious side effect for those who struggle with body dysmorphia. If this is a concern or side effect that you’re experiencing, there are a few ways that you can tighten loose skin during and after weight loss:

Exercise

You can tailor your exercise to decrease the appearance of loose skin by focusing on building muscle mass, which can tighten the skin around areas of focus. Moderating your exercise and not pushing yourself too hard too quickly, allowing the skin time to shrink, can also help prevent loose skin during and after weight loss.

Diet

Increasing your intake of certain nutrients, like Vitamin C can help improve collagen production in the body, which can improve the skin’s elasticity during weight loss. Before you add multivitamins or supplements to your diet, do some research and talk to your health care professionals to make sure you’re doing right by your body.

Hydration

Dehydration can cause the skin to tighten and lose elasticity, making it stretch more. The average person should drink around eight glasses of water a day, but if you’re exercising more than usual or recovering from surgery, you could benefit from closer to 10 to 12 glasses a day to replenish lost electrolytes due to sweat or stress.

Cosmetic Surgery

Depending on the severity of your loose skin, getting cosmetic surgery to remove or reshape it could improve your quality of life. It’s important to note that this is an option with a price tag —  the American Society of Plastic Surgeons reported in 2016 that surgeon fees for an abdominal tuck cost an average of $5,798. This number does not include hospital fees, anesthesia or prescription costs, or any post-care requirements. And like all surgery, there is the risk of complications such as infection and scarring. However, if this feels like the right option for you, consult with your doctor to explore any possible risks.

Hair Loss

While weight loss generally does not directly cause hair loss or alopecia, it can lead to telogen effluvium, which is a condition that can cause temporary thinning and shedding of hair. Increased stress, both emotional and physical, can also cause a thinning or shedding of hair. In most cases, hair loss associated with weight loss is temporary, but there are steps you can take to help treat it as it arises:

Natural Remedies

There are several ways to regrow your hair with natural remedies found both over-the-counter or right at home, including scalp massage, essential oils, and drinking more water.

Cosmetic Remedies

Remedies like hair growth shampoo and hair thickening fibers can help reduce the appearance of hair loss, and are semi-permanent, allowing you the flexibility to stop application whenever you’re happy with your results. You can also use wigs or hairpieces, which are entirely nonpermanent.

Feeling Unusually Cold

Weight loss can lead to a natural decrease in metabolic activity. Because your metabolism doesn’t have to burn as much energy to keep your body moving, you may feel a change in your core temperature. Changes in your metabolism can result in many effects, but a persistent feeling of being cold is common. To manage this, you can try some of the known ways to improve your metabolic health:

Food Tracking

Useful for more than just counting calories, tracking what you eat, how much, and when can help you get a big-picture view on your daily nutrition. Eating around the same time every day can help train your metabolism to be more consistent, along with supplementing your diet with plenty of B vitamins — found in bananas, baked potatoes, eggs, peas, lean meats, and whole grains.

High-Intensity Interval Training

High-intensity interval training (HIIT) exercises are categorized by shortened, intense periods of activity followed by short periods of rest. HIIT exercise can help train your metabolism to burn fat instead of carbs for energy, which can cut down on food cravings as well as improve your metabolism health.

Improve Your Sleep

Sleep deprivation can impair your ability to metabolize glucose, causing you to produce less insulin, and have less energy to fuel your cells. This can increase feelings of fatigue, lethargy, and can increase the hormone responsible for making you hungry (ghrelin) later in the day. You can improve your REM sleep — which is the deep sleep cycle that your body needs to restore itself — by limiting screen time before bed, refraining from eating after 10 p.m., and keeping a consistent nighttime routine.

Personal Relationship Change

One 2013 study conducted by researchers at North Carolina State University found “when one partner in a romantic relationship loses weight, it doesn’t always have a positive effect on the relationship.” The study goes on to state that in their survey of 21 couples where one partner had lost 30 pounds or more, the other partner reported feeling threatened or insecure as a result of their partner’s weight loss. This is why it’s important to communicate why your weight loss journey is significant to you, and how you and your inner circle can support each other during this time of change. Below are a few tips on how to build support in your relationships:

Re-establish Common Ground

Even if you’re personally experiencing changes, it’s important to take some time to revisit or re-establish the things that brought your relationship together in the first place. Whether there’s a certain type of movie you both enjoy or a place that is special to you, make time for those connections again. It’s important to note that these activities don’t have to be food or body-centric. The presence of effort and compromise on both sides can help preserve or strengthen a relationship.

Keep in Touch With “You”

While your relationships might be changing or experiencing stress, it’s important to keep yourself grounded. Remind yourself that your worth is not inherently connected to you acting, looking or feeling a certain way about yourself. Mindfulness and meditation can be helpful tools for building self-confidence and staying connected with yourself during times of change.

Focus on Sustainable Weight Loss — Not Rapid Weight Loss

These side effects, and others, are worse in those who focus on rapid weight loss — whether through dangerous fad diets, supplements that aren’t approved by the FDA or prescribed by a medical professional, or self-harm techniques like starving yourself or purging — rather than sustainable weight loss. The promises of rapid weight loss can be alluring, however rapid weight loss techniques can be dangerous to your physical and mental health.

You deserve to feel good about the way you look, and that shouldn’t have to come at the cost of your mental comfort, your relationships, or your budget. With these tips in mind, anyone can achieve sustainable weight loss and manage the less expected side effects in a healthy and fulfilling way.

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