In today’s time, every new thing is becoming a trend or a fashion. People have now started to create a new trend of flaunting their grey hair growth as well. Celebrities have started flaunting their grey hair. However natural hair aging is normal but premature grays can be a point of concern for people, one of the major reasons is stress. In this article, we will find out does stress cause grey hair.
Reasons for grey hair can be extreme exposure to heat or sunlight, dyeing, coloring, bleaching, lack of nutrients, or even stress hormones as well, let’s find out how hair turns gray.
1. Hair Follicle Biology
Once the hair follicle grows hair, it produces a single set of hair colors whichever is set for life. After some time as the person ages mostly after the age of 35 or 40 hair follicle stops or start producing less color as they grow this is called hair dying or its natural cycle of regeneration.
This is a natural process of hair growth or hair cycle, that it lives or stays intact in its color for some time and eventually grows old or turns gray when the age comes, these aging can have several reasons including genes.
2. Biology of Stress and Grey Hair
It is said by researchers that when a human load itself with stress, a stress hormone called norepinephrine is released into hair follicles as a stress response, these hormones destroy the stem cells of hair follicles which are called melanocyte stem cells, commonly known as pigment-producing cells.
Hence when hair follicles have lost these melanocyte stem cells. they produce less colored or pigmented hair and they cannot regenerate pigments anymore which as a result looks to us like grey or white hair.
3. Does Stress Cause Grey Hair?
Human hair greying is a natural process that happens after 35-40 years however it can also be said that stress does cause grey hair in human beings at a young age too. A lot of research done by many organizations and especially Harvard university has done wonderful research studying whether stress causes grey hair or not.
Some of the major factors that can be highlighted as the cause of stress, is the majorly chronic stress can be related to greying of hair color. As these stresses remain for longer than the normal period and can cause physiological danger to human beings.
Some other complications related to stress are insomnia, constant headache, belly ache, low appetite, or sometimes too much hunger, or it can also be frequent urination or sweating.
These symptoms are stage 1 or 2 signs that can be detected and deterred to prevent long-term permanent damages like kidney failure, heart diseases, diabetes, thyroid, and in this case hair gray as well.
4. The Stress Model
To understand the concept of stress on your body or even the mechanism of stress in turning hair grey, one must read about the GAS model of stress that Hans Selye introduced. He singled out the side effects of stress, including the term stress itself, which we today use, so frankly, this term wasn’t common till last 100 years ago.
The GAS model is also known as General Adaptation Syndrome, this model has three steps and these three stages or steps define the action of stress and the side effects it creates or rather how it creates.
Stage 1, is the Alarm reaction stage, where this stage happens shortly after stress arrives in your body like an alarm.
Stage 2, is the resistance stage, where the flight and fight response is activated and the body uses its resources to constantly fight the stress and its effects.
Stage 3, is the exhaustion stage, where the body fails in reducing stress and the result of increasing stress keeps creating subtle variations that affect the body. In this stage, the body’s response rests its all powers and finally, the stress takes over hence resulting in problems that are physiologically visible like inhibitions in the growing body for say hair loss or grey hair or heart disease, kidney issues, diabetes, liver de-functioning, blood pressure, fatigue, depression and such.
Also Read: How To Naturally Lighten Hair: 11 Best Natural Hair Lighteners
5. How To Stop Gray Hair
Graying hair is a serious problem that can lead to self-esteem issues and overall is not a good sign for health if gray hairs are visible in middle age of a human being. There are a lot of reasons that turning hair gray including stress can turn hair grey as well but the major focus here in this section is how to stop hair from growing grey in unnatural scenarios.
5.1 Stress is a Major Concern
Stop taking the stress so seriously, whether be it acute stress or chronic, try to take a deep breath or clear your mind and take action towards diminishing that stress or stress source rather than just accelerating your blood pressure over it. Remember that stress affects your overall life cycle.
5.2 Sun Can be Your Foe
Do not expose your hair to direct sunlight. If you planning to be on a beach this summer try to have a UV-protectant hair spray for that. The ozone layer is depleting and so does the harmful rays that are meeting us without any curtain.
5.3 Proper Diet
Take proper nutrition and hydration for your body. This plays a major role in your hair’s health and growth.
5.4 Hairs do not Prefer Salt
Try to avoid your hair directly coming in contact with salt water or avoid washing hair in salt water, Rather use filtered water.
5.5 Harsh Shampoos can Create Grey Effect
Stop using harsh shampoos or sulfate or paraben mixed hair products, they will eventually cause hair loss and then grey hair or pigment loss.
5.6 Smoking is Injurious to Hair
Avoid indulging in habits like smoking or drinking any type of alcoholic drink to prevent premature greying.
5.7 Style Now, Grey Later
Try to avoid using heavy hair products like re-bonding creams or hair color dyes etc.
When it comes to greying of hair biological age does play a role but if you take care of your hair and know every preventive measure then it can count as a great weapon toward your hair health.
Frequently Asked Questions(FAQs)
1. Can you Protect Hair from turning grey?
Ans. At one age everyone gets grey hair, but yes premature greying can be prevented.
2. How to undo grey hair?
Ans. Once hair turns grey, it will remain grey, but if it bothers, one can choose non-harmful dyes or extensions.
3. How to style hair and still protect them from maturing early?
Ans. Use non-heat styling products like wet hair curls for curling.
4. What to eat to stop hair from turning grey?
Ans. One should include vitamins and protein in their diet for healthy hair.
5. Is grey hair terrible?
Ans. Absolutely not, there is no shame in flaunting your grey hair, There is beauty in every shade.
6. Does stress cause grey hair?
Ans. Yes, stress can cause grey hair.
So, follow a healthy lifestyle; exercise, eat right, sleep and relax with whatever you enjoy. Try to keep stress at bay and make a difference in your life, looks, and hair.