Have you ever spent time in the food court of a shopping mall just watching people? In addition to enjoying some yummy food, it can be fun simply to see the variety of people that walk by in a short time.
One thing you might notice is how different people's hair can be. You're likely to see all sorts of colors, from brown and black to blonde and red. You might even see some unique colors, like blue or purple!
Some hair is short and other hair is long. Some people have curly hair, while others have straight hair. Some people have a lot of hair and, well, some people don't! That's what we're talking about today in Wonderopolis!
It's a fact of life. Some people go bald over time. In some cases, it might have to do with their particular genes. For some people, baldness is simply a family trait they inherited from their parents or grandparents.
For others, baldness may be the result of a medical issue. There are many medical problems that might result in baldness. In fact, the treatment for some medical problems, such as cancer, might also lead to baldness.
But everyone loses hair. Even you! In fact, you lose around 50 to 100 hairs every single day! It's true. You've probably seen them on your sweater or the bathtub drain. As you lose hair, your body produces more to replace the ones you lose.
At least it usually does. That's not always the case for someone who has hair loss. When someone goes bald, the body either stops producing new hairs or it doesn't produce enough to replace all the ones that are lost. The medical term for such hair loss is alopecia.
Anyone can have alopecia, but it's much more common in men. The older men get, the more likely they are to experience alopecia. This phenomenon is called androgenetic alopecia. Sometimes it's more commonly known as male-pattern baldness.
Androgenetic alopecia doesn't affect kids, but kids can also lose their hair. For example, kids with cancer who have to undergo chemotherapy treatment might experience hair loss. Hair loss can also occur when hair isn't treated properly. Brushing the hair too hard, wearing hair accessories, such as barrettes, that are too tight, and using strong chemicals to dye, bleach, perm or straighten the hair can all cause hair loss.
Many of these reasons for hair loss can be prevented or reversed over time. If you want to keep your hair on your head and looking nice, treat it well! If you're a boy and there's a history of baldness in your family, there may be nothing you can do to prevent baldness when you get much older.
However, there are many new medicines and treatments on the market today that can help baldness. In the long run, though, you may just want to accept and embrace your genetic history and learn to live with baldness. As we all know, it's what's inside — not on top of — your head that really counts!
Standards: CCRA.L.3, CCRA.L.6, CCRA.R.1, CCRA.R.2, CCRA.R.4, CCRA.R.10, CCRA.W.4, CCRA.SL.1