Hair disorders in children cover a wide range of conditions that affect the health, growth, or appearance of a child’s hair. These can include hair loss (alopecia), excessively brittle or fragile hair, unusually slow or fast hair growth, or changes in hair texture and colour. Such disorders may not only have physical consequences but can also lead to emotional and psychological distress in children due to their impact on appearance and self-image.
Hair disorders in children can be triggered by various factors. Some conditions like alopecia areata, where hair falls out in small patches, are believed to be caused by the immune system attacking hair follicles. Tinea capitis, a fungal infection, can also cause hair loss. Physical stress from tight hairstyles or harsh hair care products can lead to traction alopecia, while nutritional deficiencies or underlying health conditions like thyroid disorders can also affect hair health. Finally, certain hair disorders can be genetic, passed down from parents to their offspring.
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When a dermatologist evaluates a child for a hair disorder, they’ll typically start with a detailed medical history and physical examination. They might closely inspect the scalp and hair under magnification or use a specialized tool to assess the strength and structure of the hair shafts. In some cases, they may take a sample of hairs for microscopic analysis or perform a scalp biopsy. Additional tests might be ordered if an underlying medical condition is suspected.
The treatment of hair disorders in children depends on the specific condition and its underlying cause. For example, fungal infections may require antifungal medications, while disorders related to immune function, such as alopecia areata, might be treated with corticosteroids or other immunosuppressive medications. In cases where hair loss is due to physical stress or harsh hair care practices, changes in hair handling and care are often enough to resolve the issue. It’s essential to remember that treatment effectiveness can vary, and a tailored approach is usually required.
You can use your Integrated Shield Plans to pay for certain procedures. Speak to us to learn more, and you’ll be surprised at how affordable private healthcare can be.
We are dedicated to your skin health and well-being. Our results-oriented approach is suitable for a wide range of hair, skin and nail conditions. Consult our MOH-accredited dermatologist for a personalised treatment plan.
MBBS (S'pore) MRCP (UK) FAMS (Dermatology)
Dr. Lee Hwee Chyen is an accredited Adult & Paediatric dermatologist managing a wide range of skin, hair and nail conditions. The clinic provides services for medical, surgical, cosmetic, women’s and paediatric dermatology.
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101 Irrawaddy Road #16-09
Royal Square at Novena, Singapore 329565
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The permanency of hair disorders depends on the specific condition. While some hair disorders can lead to permanent hair loss or changes, many are temporary and resolve with appropriate treatment.
While not as common as in adults, hair loss can occur in children due to several reasons, including scalp infections, stress, or certain medical conditions.
Some hair disorders, especially those related to hair care practices or nutritional deficiencies, can be prevented with proper hair care and a balanced diet. However, hair disorders due to genetic factors or immune system dysfunction may not be preventable.
If your child is experiencing unexplained hair loss, changes in hair texture, or any other concerning symptoms related to their hair, it would be appropriate to consult a dermatologist.