Let’s be honest: The mere idea of going bald is scary. For the majority of men – myself included – a healthy head of hair is closed related to our self-image. Without hair, not only do we feel old, but we also feel less attractive.
We cannot imagine a world without hair on our heads. Hence the reason why some people forego wearing a hat thinking it could cause hair loss, too.
But what about headphones; do they cause hair loss? To answer this question, let’s delve into some research.
What Should You Know About Hair Loss?
There are numerous reasons why a person would experience hair loss. Some of these reasons are beyond a person’s control as they are genetic or hereditary. Let’s take a look at two of the leading causes of hair loss.
There is always a possibility that you’re genetically predisposed to hair thinning, meaning you will see a gradual, reduction of your hair volume throughout your life.
What happens in this instance, is that individual hair follicles are sensitive to male hormones, and it is this sensitivity that causes the follicles to gradually shrink and produce slightly finer and shorter hairs with each passing hair growth cycle.
This is where your hair loss is the result of a trigger. A trigger would be an internal imbalance of a nutrient, nutritional deficiency, severe stress, type of dieting, or even an illness.
Most Common Causes of Hair Loss
There are numerous reasons why people think hair loss occurs, and many of them are embedded in mythology. It’s now time to separate the facts from myths so that you can be better informed.
It’s In Your Genes
A lot of us believe that hair loss is a genetic problem – a view supported by science. What most of us don’t know, however, is that when it comes to hair loss, we get the genetics from our maternal side.
That’s right, even if your dad is pitch bald, it doesn’t mean you won’t have any hair to comb over once you’re over 40. Instead, as reported in a research article, genes that might be responsible for baldness comes from the mother, because they exist in the X chromosome, which comes from the maternal side.
Stress Causes Hair Loss
There are several factors causing hair loss, the most popular of which is stress. When you’re under deep stress, it might be so that the immune system of your body attacks your hair follicles. That, in turn, would weaken them and cause hair loss.
- Stress by Nick Youngson CC BY-SA 3.0 Alpha Stock Images
That being said, here is the same article which tells us that stress causes hair loss – it also states that it isn’t an irreversible process. It will help you get your stress levels under control, and you might get the hair to grow back in no time.
Some Medications Can Also Cause Hair Loss
I hate to break it to you, but the weight-loss drugs that you might be taking to look pretty might have shed some hair off your top, too. At least that’s what WebMD says. And guess what, weight loss drugs aren’t the only set of medications that can cause hair loss.
Also, a wide range of drugs – from birth control pills to mood stabilizers and antibiotics to acne medications with Vitamin X – is thought to cause hair loss. Therefore, if you want to make sure that the drug you’re taking for another illness doesn’t cause a problem in your head department, discuss the potential side effects of EVERY drug with your pharmacist and doctor. That’s the only way you can be sure that the medicine you’re taking isn’t messing with your hair.
Hormones play a massive role in regulating the hair growth cycle. A hormonal imbalance can lead to numerous health and beauty issues which can include weight gain, acne, and hair loss.
Oestrogens which are the female hormones are hair-friendly and can keep hairs for a more extended period as opposed to Androgens which are male hormones that are not very hair friendly and have been to shorten the hair growth cycle.
An excess of Androgens in your body is usually due to a genetic predisposition to follicle sensitivity and having it can affect you more than someone who does not have a preference.
Iron deficiency stands as among the most common causes of hair loss in women, and it is essential for producing hair cell protein.
A lack of Vitamin B12 not only leaves you feeling tired, but it can also contribute to your hair prematurely falling out. Also, it’s because Vitamin B12 is extremely critical to the health of your red blood cells – cells that are responsible for carrying oxygen to your tissues.
Can Wearing Headphones Cause Hair Loss?
In fact, provided you go to forums where people ask similar questions, and you’d come across scores of people who have been wearing headphones for decades – yes, DECADES – but still have a head full of hair. Therefore, unless you have a genetic issue (as discussed earlier), wearing headphones won’t cause hair loss.
Why People Think Wearing Headphones Causes Hair Loss?
Having told you that headphones do not cause hair loss, let’s turn our attention to why some people think that they do.
Headphones with a tight fit
Scour the review section of any pair of headphones on Amazon, and you’d see people complaining about a tight fit. The problem is notably worse with cheap headphones; since their headband has no padding to prevent raw parts from coming into contact with your ears.
Consequently, when people wear such cheap headphones – those who cause their head to ache – they think that maybe, just maybe, these headphones are the reason why there’s a sweet spot during their otherwise bushy head.
However, as the research cited above showed us, there’s NO evidence that wearing headphones – even those with a tight fit – might cause hair loss.
The weight of the headphones. Notably, the heavier the headphones is also another factor people cite when blaming headphones for causing hair loss. This problem – of heaviness – is especially severe with cheap headsets; which are those with a built-in mic.
In addition to weighing down your head, bulky headphones can also cause your ears to ache. What’s worse, while you can solve the problem of a tight-fit headphone by loosening it up a bit, no such remedy is available to reduce the weight of your headset.
Once again, however, while wearing bulky headphones might make your head to ache, it usually won’t cause or exacerbate hair loss, but as we’ve mentioned before, in extreme cases when you are wearing your headphones many hours a day, it really can result in the hair loss. All you need to do is to consider the time you are spending on PC when playing games or producing music. These two activities are usually needed headphones with the headband, and that’s also one of the main reasons for hair loss.
Headphones without any padding
Having used headphones for more than a decade, I still don’t understand people who invest in headphones who don’t have a speck of padding – both on the band as well as on the ear cups.
After all, since we’re going to use them for years, headphones should be comfortable. Moreover, the best way for them to be like that is to have some leather. Even if their price tag doesn’t allow them leather, even ridiculously low-priced models could afford to add foam.
Having said that, while the absence of padding might make your headphones comfortable to wear, it doesn’t turn them into a hair-sucking magnet. Even headphones that have an over-dose of plastic won’t cause hair loss.
Does Wearing Headphones Exacerbate Hair Loss?
Yes, they can. As noted by this reputed newspaper, wearing headphones might exacerbate hair loss problem. That is, because, when you’re walking along, listening to music, headphones are being pushed atop your hair, without you even noticing this.
While strong hair follicles will withstand this pushing and pulling, the weaker ones would give in. That means that thin hair is more susceptible to get broken. Similar is the case if you’ve dyed hair, which is weaker than naturally-colored ones.
Ways you can reduce hair Loss with Headphones
Feeling worried? Use the following tips to make your hair safe.
Put Hair in a Ponytail
Headphones exacerbate the existing hair loss problem when they push your hair. They do that when your hair is either rough or unkempt. Since you don’t want headphones to do that, always keep your hair in a ponytail.
Why? Well, with a ponytail, you won’t allow headphones to snag your hair. Instead, headphones will glide over your hair. Consequently, with them not pulling your hair, headphones won’t be able to exacerbate hair loss problems.
Make sure your headphones fit well
Your headphones shouldn’t move around too much. Therefore, it shouldn’t be loose or tight. Avoid the tension of headphones on your head because it can lead to hair loss in extreme cases. However, it will happen only when you will wear headphones for hours and hours daily.
Make sure you always clean your Headphones
Headphones just like keyboards and mouse contain a lot of bacterias, and that’s why you need to clean them regularly. Take an antiseptic wet wipe and thoroughly clean the inner part of the cup that makes contact with your ears and the band that goes across the scalp.
Cleaning your headphones not only reduces the chances of hair loss but prevents you from having nasty ear infections or blackheads in your ears on the scalp.
Check this video to explain to you how to clean your earpads (it works for almost any headphones with earpads)
Get Some Extra Cushioning For Your Existing Headphones
Adding some extra cushion to your existing headphones can definitely alleviate some of the pressure your headphones are exerting on your hair.
General Ways of Reducing Hair Loss
Use a Hairbrush
You don’t have to have a lot of hair to use this technique. Use a detangler to safely brush your hair to make sure not even one strand is left unclean. Afterward, use Brylcreem to make your hair as smooth as possible before putting on the headphones. Since the detangler would have smoothed your hair, there would be less chance of breakage.
Get Advice from your hairstylist
Talk to your hairstylist about hair treatments and styling that won’t damage your hair. Hair treatments that use chemicals such as bleach, straightening, hair color all contribute towards your hair loss. Weaves and extensions have been known to also contribute to hair loss.
Use the correct type of shampoo and conditioner for your hair
Always use the shampoo designed for your type of hair. When in doubt, it is usually recommended a baby shampoo as it is mild on hair.
Reduce the chemicals you use on your hair
Are you in the habit of coloring your hair once a month or applying various chemical treatments to your hair?
You should ease the use of these chemicals, and it is advisable not to get chemical treatments on your hair every too often as these contribute to the damaging of your hair.
Check this video for further details on how to avoid hair loss:
After going through the article, one thing that stands out is that it doesn’t matter how frequently you wear your headphones; it definitely won’t cause you any hair loss.
There is nothing much you can do if your hair loss is attributed to genetics, but if your hair loss is a thing of your lifestyle choices and nutrition deficiencies, there are a couple of things you can do to mitigate the hair loss process.
Featured Image: lyncconf.com