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Clip-In Hair Extensions Can Cause Traction Alopecia If Worn For Over 5 Hours a Day

If nickel clip-in extensions are continually worn, and the tension on your hair is not regularly alleviated, scarring can occur as well as permanent hair loss, leaving the wearer with a less than desirable appearance they’ll be forced to deal with for the rest of their lives.

Almost all of these clips are made from nickel and if the wearer is allergic to nickel, wearing them for over 5 hours a day will eventually cause traction alopecia and scarring.

In today’s modern society, most people think only of the final appearance of their hair.

Hours spent backcombing and coating the scalp with lots of hair spray so that the clips can stay in longer, or even wearing really heavy hair extensions caused by the length of the hair purchased continually irritates the scalp all day while at the same time slowly pulling the hair out of its roots.

Cheryl Guttman (2) research found that the continual over-processing with chemical treatments such as bleaches, dyes, or strengtheners disrupts the keratin structure in a manner that reduces its tensile strength.

The hair follicles can become fragile. At first, the hair falling out is not so noticeable because the clip-on extensions are disguising it.

Add brushing and combing your hair, you will note a difference in the reduced thickness of your hairline but ignore it initially.

Later on, some people might experience massive fallout which can occur with brushing, combing and washing their hair.

On top of that using extreme heat to fashion, each day can also permanently damage the hair follicle.

If detected, traction alopecia is reversible if diagnosed early. However, the permanent loss can occur too slowly for immediate detection.

Hair loss often occurs in the front but is also subject to the immediate adjacent area to where the clip-in extension was pulling and damaging the hair root.

According to Basil M Hantash, MD, Ph.D. (1) The sad truth of the matter is that permanent traction alopecia does not respond to medical treatment such as minoxidil or finasteride since by its nature, the loss is different than genetic hair loss.

The only way one can treat traction alopecia is with transplants.

Follicular unit hair grafting has been identified as the only practical solution to treating traction alopecia.

Hair transplant clinics are reportedly seeing a rise in the number of patients with traction alopecia and say the results can be good to excellent.

However, this can be a costly approach, especially while clip-in extensions appear so cheap.

What you have to consider is whether wearing clip-on extensions for over 5 hours a day versus the value of your own hair. Which is worth more?

There are over 16 different extension techniques. It is important that you find a technique that is suitable for your type and lifestyle.

There is a misconception that hair extensions can be worn permanently for up to 6 months at a time.

In today’s society, you need to hold on to what you’ve got, look after what you have and start being kinder to your hair.

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Sources: 1. Basil M Hantash, MD, Ph.D., Robert A Schwartz, MD, MPH. (2005) Traction Alopecia,

2. Cheryl Guttman, May 1, 2003 Alopecia Options for Black Women, Dermatology Times, 3. Diane Shawe Blog:

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