The hair that sits on top of your head actually grows from beneath the skin from hair follicles or roots. Blood vessels at the follicle’s base provide the necessary nourishment for hair to grow. The lifecycle of hair can be long. Years may pass between the hair breaking the skin’s surface and it falling out years later.
During the course of this process, each strand of hair goes through three stages called anagen, catagen, and telogen. These stages can exist simultaneously for individual strands of hair, meaning that one strand may be in the telogen stage while another is in the anagen stage. Still others may be in the catagen phase at the same time.
Here’s a brief look at each of these stages.
Anagen: Also known as the growing phase, this stage lasts typically lasts between two and seven years and determines how long each strand of hair is going to be. Although the stage length is determined largely by our genetics, as we age the length of the anagen stage decreases for each hair, resulting in hair thinning or weakening. A hair-healthy diet rich in specific nutrients, such as Vitamins A, C, D, and E, protein, zinc, and Omega-3 fatty acids, can help reverse this weakening process.
Catagen: At the end of the growth stage, each strand of hair passes through what is called the transitional stage. This transitional stage, or catagen, usually lasts between 10 and 14 days. At this point in the cycle, the hair follicle shrivels up and separates from the dermal papilla, thus cutting off the strand’s nutritional blood supply. The hair shaft is then pushed upwards onto the scalp in preparation for the telogen phase. For more information on products that can help you improve the health of your hair, we highly recommend you read this informative article http://hairregrowthsolutions.com/viviscal-review/.
Telogen: This is the final phase of hair growth, which is also known as the resting phase. This phase typically lasts anywhere between one and four months. In this phase, the skin cells inside the hair follicle continue to grow and reproduce, and they form a temporary anchor around the base of the hair strand. This enables the strand to complete its natural function without inordinately taxing the rest of the body in the process so that the hair growth phase can continue.
Exogen: As this phase comes to an end, the hair follicle starts to grow again. This causes the skin-cell anchor at the shaft of hair strand to soften, resulting in the hair base breaking free from the root and an eventually shedding of the hair (also known as exogen). On average, anywhere from 50 to 150 hairs will be shed in a given day, and this hair loss is considered to be entirely normal.
Two weeks after the old hair is shed, a new hair shaft will begin to emerge in the crucial dermal papilla, and the hair growth cycle starts all over again.