The Phases of Hair Growth
The hair growth cycle comprises four phases - anagen, catagen, telogen, and exogen.
The Anagen Phase
The first phase of the hair growth cycle is the anagen, or growth, phase. Between 80 and 90% of hair follicles are in the growth phase at any moment in time. It is during this phase that the bulb's cells grow very quickly, driving the growth of new hair. This phase can last anywhere from two to seven years, and the length of this phase determines how long your hair can grow.
Factors that affect the length of the anagen phase include age, genetics, nutrition, and your overall health. The length of the anagen phase varies from person to person and hair type to hair type. For example, your eyelashes have a much shorter anagen phase than the hair on your scalp, which is why they do not grow as long as the hair on your head.
The Catagen Phase
The catagen, or transitional, phase of the hair growth cycle is very short, lasting only two or three weeks. During this phase, your hair becomes what is referred to as club hair. Its growth stops and it is removed from the blood supply. When too much hair enters this phase too quickly, excess shedding can occur. When these hairs reach the final phase of the growth cycle, hair thinning can occur.
The Telogen Phase
The telogen, or resting, phase of the hair growth cycle lasts approximately three months. At any given time, 10 to 15% of hair follicles are in this phase. It is during this phase that new hair is beginning to grow beneath the resting club hair. With time, this new hair will replace the club hair.
The Exogen Phase
The exogen, or hair shedding, phase is the final phase of the hair growth cycle. During this phase, between 50 and 150 hairs fall out every day. This is why you find hair in your hairbrush or your shower. It is perfectly normal. After this phase, the cycle begins again with the hair follicles returning to the anagen phase.
Can You Stop Hair Loss?
Shedding is a natural, healthy part of the hair growth cycle. However, excess shedding can be mitigated by optimizing the anagen phase of the cycle. This is accomplished by taking simple steps to improve your health including:
- Staying hydrated
- Getting seven to nine hours of sleep nightly
- Regularly exercising
- Minimizing stress levels
- Avoiding crash diets and cleanses
- Eating nutritious foods rich in vitamin C, zinc, iron, and protein
Schedule Your Initial Consultation Today
All hair goes through four stages - the growth phase, the transitional phase, the resting phase, and the shedding phase. While it is perfectly normal to experience shedding, if you believe you are experiencing excess shedding, you need to consult with a knowledgeable professional. While a doctor can diagnose the cause of your hair loss, a hair restoration expert provides a solution to your excess shedding.
For more information on the phases of hair growth, contact us today to schedule your private, personal initial consultation. Our hair growth experts will help you with a personalized plan to improve the health of your hair. We can't wait to hear from you!