Does vaping cause hair loss?

Does vaping cause hair loss? If you vape frequently and have been experiencing hair thinning or loss, you might wonder if vaping has anything to do with it.

 Although no direct evidence indicates that vaping causes hair loss, the nicotine in these vape pens (e-cigarettes) can cause hair loss by minimizing the oxygen and blood flow reaching your hair follicles. In this article, we’ll delve deeper into determining if vaping can cause hair loss and what you can do to prevent it. 

What is vaping? 

Vaping involves inhaling the aerosable vapor produced by an e-cigarette or similar device. The vapor is produced by heating a liquid containing nicotine, propylene glycol, and flavorings.

What is the link between vaping and hair loss? (Does Vaping Cause Hair Loss?)

A study by the University of Southern California suggests that vaping can cause hair loss, but more research needs to be done to come up with conclusive evidence. However, it is known that nicotine, a highly addictive substance found in vaping liquids, has vasoconstrictive properties, meaning it can narrow blood vessels and reduce blood flow.

 Hair follicles rely on a healthy blood supply to receive essential nutrients and oxygen for optimal growth. Restricted blood circulation to the scalp may compromise the follicles’ ability to function correctly, potentially leading to hair loss. Nicotine also disrupts the hair’s pH balance resulting in an acidic scalp which causes hair to fall out. 

Vaping has been associated with increased levels of inflammation and oxidative stress in the body. Inflammation disrupts the normal functioning of hair follicles, while oxidative stress can cause damage to cells and DNA, including those in the hair follicles. Chronic inflammation and oxidative stress may contribute to hair follicle miniaturization and subsequent hair loss.

What are the side effects of vaping? 

Vaping is often seen as a less harmful alternative to smoking cigarettes, as it does not involve the combustion of tobacco but is not entirely risk-free. The long-term effects of vaping are not yet known. However, some potential risks are associated with vaping, such as lung damage, asthma, addiction, exposure to harmful chemicals, and hair loss.

The majority of the chemicals found in cigarettes are also found in e-cigarettes. Out of 7000 chemicals found in cigarettes, only 11 have been tested for safety, meaning there could be more harmful chemicals in both cigarettes and e-cigarettes. Some of these harmful chemicals include:

  • Acrolein
  • Acetone
  • Formaldehyde
  • Diacetyl
  • Benzene 
  • Volatile organic compounds
  • Metal like nickel and lead

What you can do to prevent hair loss while vaping

Does vaping cause hair loss? Yes. What can you do to prevent this? Quitting vaping is the best thing you can do for your hair, skin, and body. However, if you do not want to quit vaping, you can do the following to prevent hair loss. (It’s important to note that they cannot prevent side effects associated with nicotine)

  1. Eat a balanced diet 
  2. Exercise regularly
  3. Avoid heat and chemical treatments
  4. Minimize sun exposure
  5. Avoid or minimize the consumption of alcohol
  6. Avoid stress

Final Thought

Like smoking cigarettes, vaping harms your hair and body because of the chemicals present. Although not everyone will experience hair loss after vaping, it is crucial to take preventive measures to ensure this does not happen.

If you are experiencing hair thinning or loss, consult a health officer for diagnosis and treatment. 

Frequently Asked Questions on Does Vaping Cause Hair Loss

Does nicotine cause hair loss?

Yes, nicotine can cause hair loss by reducing blood flow, essentially reducing the nutrients reaching the hair follicle. When the hair follicle is starved, the hair will start to thin and eventually fall out.

Will my hair grow back if I stop vaping?

The answer is Yes and No. In most cases, the hair will grow back after you stop vaping because the body will begin to heal. But, if you were a regular user, then you stop suddenly,  it can cause withdrawal symptoms, leading to more hair loss. The hair follicles may shrink, making them more susceptible to dryness and causing more bald spots. This is why you need to consult a professional.

How long does it take for hair to grow back after quitting vaping?

Within three months of quitting vaping, your blood flow will improve, meaning your hair will start to receive the adequate nutrients it needs to grow. However, it may take longer for the hair to grow back to what it was, or it might not. 

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