Can Dyeing Your Hair Cause Hair Loss?

Written by Dr. Griffin

Dyeing is, perhaps, the most common chemical treatment for hair. Highlights, a radical change in color, or a touch up to hide grays are part of many people’s beauty upkeep routines. A big concern, of course, is whether dyeing can contribute to hair loss. While chemical treatments can harm your hair and strip it of oils and proteins, dyeing your hair will not cause you to go bald.


The Difference between Hair Damage and Hair Loss

Chemical processes such as dyeing the hair can damage the hair, leaving it brittle and easy to break. When hair breaks, the hair gets shorter, giving the impression of hair loss. Such damage is extreme and, in general, a good colorist or stylist will treat the hair with care, preventing unnecessary damage. But breakage is quite different from balding or temporary hair loss caused by genetics or a range of medical conditions.

Hair loss, unlike breakage, results from hair follicle damage that prevents hair from actually growing. When the hair follicles shrink over time, as in the case in male and female pattern baldness, patches of the scalp will not grow hair. Trauma, excessive stress, hormonal changes, and dietary deficiencies—such as a lack of iron—can also cause the hair to thin.

Age also plays a significant role in the hair’s fullness. It is quite normal for the hair to thin as we age. For those who are removing the grey, hair thinning may correlate with dyeing, but it is typically not the cause. Because dyeing can diminish the protein in the hair, individual strands may become weaker and thinner, some people associate dyeing with hair loss. However, there is often an independent set of factors at work.


Diagnosing Hair Loss

Hair loss can be distressing, especially if sudden. If you are experiencing hair loss, it is recommended that you seek a proper diagnosis. The first thing is to understand the nature of hair loss, first ruling out any underlying illnesses as the cause. To learn more about hair loss and hair restoration options, contact Dr. Griffin to schedule a consultation.