Hair Health 101: What’s Causing Your Sudden Hair Loss?

A beautiful Latina woman wearing a white blouse and gold hoop earrings, running her fingers through her hair

Seeing more hair in your hairbrush or swirling down the shower drain? It’s not necessarily a bad thing. Everyone loses hair from time to time. In fact, it’s a totally normal part of your body’s natural hair growth cycle. Think about it: If you never lost any hair, it would be impossible to brush out, and it would leave you looking like a distant cousin of Bigfoot.

However, if you’re noticing more hair shed than usual, you may be wondering about the causes of hair loss. It could be a sign of a bigger issue with your age, wellness, or nutrition. Understanding more about the life cycle of your hair, what could be disrupting it, and how to prevent hair loss can help you pinpoint and target the real reason for your sudden hair loss and get your tresses back on track.

The Life Cycle of Your Hair

Each strand of your hair — yes, all 90,000 to 150,000 of them — go through the same growth cycle. When actively growing, your hair is in the anagen stage. It’s the 3-5 years that a single strand of hair is sprouting and growing. Then, hair goes into the catagen stage, which is a relatively short period lasting a few days when the follicle is readying itself to shed the strand. Finally, hair enters the telogen phase, where the hair sheds and the follicle goes dormant for about 3 months before the cycle starts all over again.

When hearing about the hair cycle, you might be amazed that you have any hair at all. Eight years to grow a single strand of hair, only for it to fall out and go dormant? But remember, you have tens of thousands of strands of hair, all at different stages. It’s rare to lose a lot of hair at once, and if you notice hair loss on a large scale, it’s usually a sign of another health issue.

Common Causes of Hair Loss

Hair loss happens to everyone. It might not be for the same reasons or at the same scale, but no one keeps the same head of hair throughout their lives. Still, seeing major hair loss can make you feel isolated and self-conscious, and it can definitely have you searching for a solution. Consider some of these common causes of hair loss and what you can do to help.


Your genes strike again! According to the American Academy of Dermatology Association, hereditary hair loss is one of the most common hair loss causes in both men and women. While men often experience telltale hair loss along the front and crown of their heads, women are more likely to see predictable patterns on the crown, thinning on the scalp, and loss at the temples. It’s called androgenic alopecia, and it can be treated with the help of a health-care provider.

Hormonal Changes

If you’ve experienced a sudden change in your hormones, you can almost guarantee you’ll experience hair loss as a result. That’s because hormones regulate the hair growth cycle, and if those hormones are out of balance, your hair will be, too. Pregnancy, menopause, and even thyroid conditions can all cause a disruption of the hair cycle.


Losing hair can cause you stress, and stress can cause hair loss: It’s the dark side of the hair growth cycle. With stress comes an increase in cortisol, a fight-or-flight hormone that can disrupt hair growth. To stop the vicious cycle, you’ll need to address stress head on by learning coping mechanisms and avoiding some of your triggers to reduce unnecessary cortisol production.

Medical or Cancer Treatment

It’s not uncommon to experience hair loss as a side effect to medical treatment like prescription medications or cancer treatments such as chemotherapy. Unfortunately, it’s a situation where the cause is in the cure and the cure is in the cause. You can talk to your doctor about addressing this type of hair loss, including caps that help protect against cancer treatment-related loss or trying new medications with fewer side effects.


As with just about every other natural process in our bodies, age impacts the hair cycle. The ratio of follicles in the anagen (growth) phase compared to the telogen (dormant) phase decreases. Not only does that mean it takes longer to grow hair, but it can also mean your hair is less likely to bounce back from damaging conditions like sun exposure, heat styling, and chemical processes like dyeing or perming. Revitalize your scalp with a daily scalp serum like Hair Regeneres, which uses a peptide, a unique anchoring complex, and raspberry ketone to promote thicker, fuller-looking hair.

Traction Alopecia

Sometimes we aren’t as gentle with our delicate strands as we should be. Pulling and tugging on your hair can definitely cause it to fall out prematurely. Whether it’s aggressive brushing, using extensions, or even pulling your hair into a tight ponytail at the gym frequently, traction alopecia happens when you are too rough with your hair. A gentler touch can help, as can giving your hair a break from extensions or investing in low-damage hair elastics.

Nutrient Deficiency

Your hair is just like your skin; you can apply serums and creams so it looks healthier, but you can’t fix nutrient deficiency from the outside in. If your diet is low in nutrients and vitamins like biotin, protein, and iron, your hair’s life cycle may not be as healthy as it could be. You can supplement with a product like Hair Regeneres ADVANCED to help fill the gaps in your diet and give your body the nutrition it needs for your best hair ever. Bonus: it even includes a stress-reducing complex to help address stress-related hair loss.

A bottle of hair growth plus scalp health formula Hair Regeneres ADVANCED lying open with white capsules spilling out, next to a bottle of Advanced Hair Thickening Serum.

If you’ve noticed more hair loss than usual, don’t panic: It’s normal, and more often than not, completely treatable. You’ll need to isolate what could be causing the loss and work with your diet, stress levels, and a health-care provider to give your hair exactly what it needs to reduce the fall and get back to a healthy state.