Can Stress Cause Hair Loss? How High Stress Levels Can Make Your Hair Fall Out

Table of Contents:

  • Can Stress Cause Hair Loss?
  • 3 Ways Stress Can Affect Hair Loss

               •Telogen EffluviumTrichotillomania

               •Alopecia Areata

  • Can Stress Cause Permanent Hair Loss?
  • How to Stop Stress from Causing Hair Loss
  • Consider a Hair Transplant for Stress-Related Hair Loss

It’s human nature to stress out. Work, school, relationships, family life, and other factors can induce stress in any individual, whether it’s short-term or long-term. Stress has a lot of unfortunate side effects, but is the loss of hair one of them? Read on to find out whether extreme stress can cause hair loss, and how.

Can Stress Cause Hair Loss? 

Stress can have a variety of side effects on the body and mind, such as a weakened immune system and immune system attacks for both men and women. This is why one might notice that they experience more frequent colds and other brief illnesses when they’re stressed. 

However, stress doesn’t just bring on colds, it can also impact our hair. There is a correlation between extreme stress and hair loss that many people are unaware of. When under great stress, one could experience one of three types of hair loss. Such hair loss could occur abruptly and lead to the loss of various strands of hair, which could, unfortunately, lead to even more stress for the affected individual. 

3 Ways Stress Can Affect Hair Loss

When under extreme stress, any individual can experience varying degrees of hair loss through three different methods. Those three methods of hair loss under stress include:

#1 Telogen Effluvium

With telogen effluvium, significant amounts of stress can push large amounts of hair follicles into a resting phase. Then, a few months later, when you’re brushing or washing your hair, affected pieces of hair from telogen effluvium will simply fall out. This form of hair loss can result in the abrupt falling out of various strands, even if your stressful feelings have passed. 

#2 Trichotillomania 

Trichotillomania is the overwhelming and irresistible urge to pull hair from your eyebrows, scalp, and other parts of your body. This hair pulling can result from overwhelming emotional stress, anxiety, depression, and other emotions. Trichotillomania can cost you a lot of hair strands if left untreated. 

#3 Alopecia Areata

Alopecia Areata may develop from a variety of factors, stress included. Individuals suffering from this form of stress-related hair loss may notice that their hair loss came about suddenly and unexpectedly. This type of hair loss happens when a person’s immune system attacks hair follicles. By attacking hair follicles, the immune system has a role in hair loss, and the resulting loss of hair strands can leave you feeling even more stressed out and upset.

Can Stress Cause Permanent Hair Loss? 

Stress has been proven to cause hair loss, but is this loss a permanent result? The good news is stress can be managed, and hair loss can come to an end by managing stress and getting appropriate treatments when necessary. Nothing is permanent, and neither is hair loss in this case. In fact, two methods to go about treating stress-related hair loss include:  

Hair Transplants

Dealing with types of stress-related hair loss can be overwhelming, but luckily there are hair transplants that can help transplant healthy hair follicles in areas where your hair is thin. When dealing with hair loss due to stress, this form of treatment can get your confidence back, as well as your hair. 


When it comes to telogen effluvium, in particular, the good news is that this type of hair loss leads to diffuse thinning, which means your hair can grow back after some time with the proper maintenance and stress treatments. 

How to Stop Stress from Causing Hair Loss

The best way to stop stress is to manage it through various lifestyle changes, and even medical treatment when necessary. Some strategies and methods to stop or prevent stress from continually making an appearance for you may include:

  • Exercising, such as with a short walk or run
  • Relaxation activities, such as meditation or yoga
  • Taking care of your body, such as eating healthier and getting a restful night’s sleep
  • Talking to a therapist or other medical professional if you are dealing with overwhelming feelings of stress

Consider a Hair Transplant for Stress-Related Hair Loss

So if you’ve ever asked yourself, “can stress cause hair loss?,” now you know that the answer is yes. We know that stress can take a toll on your life, but it shouldn’t take a toll on your hair. So if you’ve experienced severe stress-related hair loss or you’re wondering what the cause of your hair loss might be, request a consultation with Dr. Feinberg and his team at The Hair Restoration Center of NY & NJ.