It's been expected that on average, hair starts to go gray in their late 30's. When they start to show, the temptation to take out the tweezers is real. But most people believe that if you pluck a gray hair, more will grow back. Many hair experts around the world say that it is a myth and it probably comes from people's natural increase in the number of gray hair as they age.
Our hair follicles produce less melanin as we age, the pigment-producing cells in each follicle. So a new gray hair will grow in its place if you pull a gray hair. It has no effect on surrounding hair since each follicle has its own set of genetics.
But still, specialist hair doctors suggest that you should avoid pulling them as if you pull a hair occasionally, it’s not going to do much damage, but If you pull that hair every time it regrows for the next 5 years, you may instead of having one gray hair, will be having a bald spot.
Illnesses that cause gray hair
Most of the people with gray hair have age-related graying. But, sometimes graying hair specifies an illness, especially if it occurs mainly at a young age. Health problems that may be the precursor of gray hair comprise of:
- Deficiency of certain vitamins such as Vitamin B 12
- Thyroid disease
- Smoking can also cause premature graying.
- Neurofibromatosis, a type of inherited disease that causes tumors to grow along nerves and abnormal development of the bones and skin.
- Tuberous sclerosis: an uncommon, inherited condition that causes benign tumors in multiple organs such as the heart, brain, kidneys, lungs, eyes, and skin.
- Vitiligo, a condition that causes melanocytes to be lost or destroyed due to the immune system fails and attacks the scalp rather than an infection.
- Alopecia areata: a disorder in which patches of hair may be suddenly lost, especially the non-gray hair. This can turn your hair gray overnight because formerly present gray or white hair suddenly become more noticeable. Colored hair may eventually return which may be white or gray.
- Some research also links premature graying to heart disease and low bone mass, but how these conditions relate to hair graying is uncertain.
The bottom line
When and how comprehensively your hair turns gray is subjective mostly by the genes you inherit from your parents. For those who have plucked those irritating gray hair from your head, researchers say that you don’t have to fear that they are coming back or stop hair regrowth.
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