It would not be too weird to say that the beauty of males and females enhances chiefly owing to the beauty of their hair. We are all very keen on fashioning our hair to augment our overall looks. Good hair is usually indicated as a boon from the gods and everybody wants it forever. Hair turning gray under standard circumstances is a sign of proceeding age and usually aged folks are the ones with graying hair. There are however factors, some ecological and some hereditary that add weight to the graying of hair in individuals long before the normal circumstances of ageing take effects. These are the individuals who struggle with the premature graying of hair. Hair plays a very imperative role in how we perceive ourselves in most respects. Regrettably, for many of us, graying befalls and does so ahead of time. This process occasionally has serious socio-emotional effects for it impairs our view of ourselves, our self-confidence, buoyancy, enthusiasm and even in rare cases our determination to live.
What is premature graying of hairs?
Losing hair color before the age of 35 is what we call premature graying. Ageing is inevitable and it affects everybody. One of the symptoms of ageing is the inception of gray hair. There might be some circumstances where the gray comes on earlier than predictable, known as premature graying, which is typically hereditary. With snowballing age, the manufacturing of the melanin cells begins to cease. Their deficiency causes hair to turn gray ultimately. The age that one might begin to develop gray hair most commonly depends on the genes that they get from their descendants. However, this might not be always correct. Deficiency of vital nutrients like vitamins, proteins, iron, etc. can result in graying of hair at a very young age. Our hair is assembled up of 90% proteins and hence, needs a stable supply of it from the inside. Hypertension because of reasons like work and studies are extensively accountable for the hair turning gray at a younger age.
The scientific explanation of gray hairs
Salt and pepper, silver, pewter, charcoal- whatever you call it, gray hair occurs to all of us at some point. But why do some individuals go gray in their 20s while others don’t see the first sign of silver until age 50? Our skull has billions of cavities and each cavity generates or cultivates one thread of hair. Our hair comprises of two diverse kinds of cells viz. keratinocytes and melanocytes. Keratinocytes perform the function for building the keratin that structures our hair while the melanocytes are active in the procedure of coloring our hair. The melanocytes which we refer as hair pigment ascend in two structures, ‘Eumalinin’ and ‘Pheomelanin’. Eumelanin holds the property of a dark brown or black hue while the Pheomelanin has a feature of yellow or red tint. These two makeups of melanin unite in different proportions and give us varied hair shades like, black, brown or blond. The chief reason for our hair becoming gray is the dearth of its melanin and in extreme cases it becomes white. Getting gray, silver, or bright white hair can be an organic part of growing more mature, and here is the reason why. Every solitary wild hair upon our scalps is created from two segments:
- Shaft – the coloured element we see expanding from our heads
- Root – the lower constituent, which keeps the hair safeguarded under the top of the head.
The foundation of every filament of hair is encircled by a tube of tissue underneath the skin that is referred to as the hair follicle. Each hair follicle comprises of a certain number of coloring cells. These pigment cells recurrently make a chemical element called melanin that gives the growing length of curly hair its color of dark brown, blonde or red. Melanin will be the very same substance that makes our skin’s color fair or darker. It also helps in the determination of whether an individual will burn down or tan within the sun’s light. The dark or light color of somebody’s hair is reliant upon how much melanin each and every hair embraces. When we grow up, the pigment cells in our hair follicles gradually expire. When there are essentially fewer pigment cells inside a hair follicle, that thread of hair won’t include a lot melanin and will come to be an extra translucent color like gray, silver, or white as it grows. As persons continue to get mature, fewer pigment cells are going to be around to create melanin. Finally, the hair will appear completely gray.
Some popular causes of gray hair at a very young age
Hair goes gray on account of a chemical chain reaction that causes it (the hair) to bleach itself from the wrong way around. The body yields an enzyme called Catalase. It also has hydrogen peroxide which is a natural product inside. The one function of catalase is to target hydrogen peroxide and change it into oxygen and water. When, because of aging, be it caused by hereditary or environmental factors, Catalase suffers decrease, hydrogen peroxide activity upsurges. This upsurge in hydrogen peroxide builds up in the hair occasioning in it (the hair) being bleached from the inside. It goes gray. The question that now needs asking is why is it that some of us have gray hairs at a much earlier chronological phase. Medical records have shown that individuals as young as eight years old have started to gray at that age. Causes for this can be:
The most evident reason for gray hairs is that you are getting older. It is the course of nature to distinguish the young and the old. It is one of the physical modifications that one experiences in the ageing process.
Lack of nutrition
Being healthy is all about eating healthy and right. What you eat is what you will see, on your skin, on your hair and on your whole health. The correct kind of diet will give you all the nutrients that your body requires to function accurately. If you are fit and healthy, your hair too will display the signs. And this will also aid in delaying the dawn of the grays.
Another reason for gray hairs is the genes. It is your hereditary makeup. Those who have it will experience the commencement of gray hairs early in their lives; some as young as in the initial twenties when it is understood that the hair follicles have stopped manufacturing the required pigments for black hair and silvery strands appear instead. This genetic condition has been challenging to rectify. The chief reason for our hair behaving this way is inheritance. If your mom or dad started going gray at a young age, then the probabilities are you may also struggle with premature gray hair. This is not always the case. Age does play a big part in the graying course. The pigment in the hair shaft is generated from cells at the base of the root of the hair and as we get mature, these cells begin manufacturing less pigment until there is no pigment at all and we wind up with the transparent hair.
Excessive stress can also cause gray hairs to surface, although its cause is not exactly identified. It does seem to conjecture that stress causes the scalp cells to exaggerate before dying off and fabricating a discoloration of the hair from black to gray.
If your diet lacks healthy dosages of vitamin B, premature graying can be prompted as it is this vitamin that is accountable for a healthy black hair pigment.
Other graying factors
Other causes of graying take account of chemical reaction, illness or thyroid imbalance. Hypertension because of reasons like work and studies are also responsible for the hair turning gray at a young age.
Lack of vitamins
Lack of vital nutrients like vitamins, proteins, iron, etc. can result in graying of hair at a very young age. Our hair is built up of 90% proteins and hence, needs a stable supply of it from the inside.
It is also found that smoking does contribute completely to the graying course owing to the heavy attack on the hair by very detrimental contaminations found in cigarettes.
Thyroid dysfunction (hypothyroidism)
This results in low production of the thyroid hormone and low hormone levels impact very damagingly on the scalp and hair.
Augmented stress and anxiety
One needs to prudently recognize that the effects of stress and its contributions have a lot to do with brain action, which results in graying. Here, with the graying of hair, stress impacts straight on the hair itself triggering the fluid at the root of the hair to dry off. The hair cannot then take up nutrition and as an outcome of the prevailing conditions, the hair goes gray.
More use of electronic devices
Recurrent use of electronic equipment for hair drying and conditioning purposes
Constant dirty working conditions make the scalp dirty. An unhygienic scalp causes the root of the hairs to deteriorate as dirt block pores.
Hard water washing of hair is also a reason of premature graying of hairs
Chemotherapy/radiotherapy on young cancer patients
This is because of ionizing radiation and also ultra violet light impacting on body cells.
Frequent illnesses from some infectious diseases
HIV/Aids contribute to graying not owing to collapse at the immune system level, but more to collapse at the hormone level. Here, one undergoes dramatic reduction of hormones, the scalp cannot accept its nutritional counterparts and consequently, the hair goes gray at an early age.
Use of concentrated hair dyes for the coloring of hair
These generally encompass acids which go on to unfavorably affect the hair. It goes gray.
This is also a major reason because at the time of untimely menopause, there are many hormonal changes that take place in a woman’s body.
Now that we know the reasons of premature graying of hair, dealing with them openly might help prevent it to occur. Here are recommendations to help you stop premature graying of hair.
- Eat protein-rich foods like meat, cereal, soy and whole grains
- Eat food opulent in iron, minerals and vitamin A and B such as green leafy veggies, bananas, tomatoes, cereals and yogurt.
- Eat food rich in iodine like cereals and fish
- Use ‘Amla’ – an Indian gooseberry blended with coconut oil and massage into the scalp recurrently.
Add curry leaves to a regular diet to help treat untimely graying of hair as curry leaves adds strength and liveliness to hair.
- Use henna to condition and nourish hair
- Massage coconut oil with lemon juice into scalp daily.
- Massage scalp and hair with butter made from cows’ milk
Take a cup of strong black tea and a tablespoon of salt and massage to hair and scalp. Leave for an hour and wash. Do not shampoo till the next day.
Appropriate intake of the following vitamins daily such as Vitamin A, B, minerals and proteins.
One thing to note is that the abrupt appearance of Grey is not because of psychological shock or ordeal. Studies have shown that if this does happen then it is normally because of Alopecia areata. What happens here is that the denser, darker hair stops growing before it affects the growth of gray hairs, giving the imprint of grey overnight. Alopecia areata ultimately causes round shaped blotches of hair loss or complete hair loss. Following these tips can help avoid graying of hair, but often time outcomes might differ as graying of hair can be instigated by many factors; factors that are at times beyond our control like age and inheritance. Taking care of oneself and performing good eating and sleeping habits can help postpone the process. Not only can it benefit our overall health, keeping in shape and living a healthy life is our superlative defense against all health hardships.