Children are often diagnosed with hair loss at an earlier age than adults. This is because children’s hair is more sensitive to chemicals and hormones.

In some cases, hair begins to thin in children may not be clear. However, there are a few things you should know about hair loss in children. 

Hair loss in children can be caused by a variety of factors including genetics, diet, and lifestyle.

How common is hair loss in children

patchy hair loss due to alopecia areata

In the United States, hair loss in children is not a common problem. It is estimated that only 2% of all children will experience some type of hair loss.

The most common type of hair loss in children is alopecia areata, which is an autoimmune disorder that causes the immune system to mistakenly attack the hair follicles.

Other types of hair loss that can occur in children include trichotillomania and telogen effluvium.

Causes and treatments

broken hairs on the entire scalp because of alopecia areata

Causes and treatments for hair loss in children can vary. In most cases, hair loss in children is caused by a medical condition that happens on the hair shaft or events like newborn hair loss.

Rarely, however, is hair loss in children simply due to genetics. Hair loss in children can be caused by: 

  • A medical condition such as lupus, thyroid disease, alopecia areata, or anemia. 
  • A traumatic event such as a car accident, surgery, or serious illness. 
  • Antibiotics taken for a long period of time. 
  • Hormonal changes associated with puberty or menopause. 
  • Excessive styling or use of harsh chemicals on the hair. 
  • Poor nutrition. 

Fortunately, most cases of hair loss in children can be treated successfully with proper diagnosis and treatment.

Traction alopecia

Traction alopecia is a type of hair loss that is caused by applying constant tension to the hair follicles and hair shaft.

This type of hair loss is most commonly seen in women who wear tight braids or hair extensions, but it can also occur in men who wear tight hairstyles. Traction alopecia can cause permanent hair loss if it is not treated.

The early symptoms of traction alopecia include a gradual thinning of the hair at the temples or the crown of the head. If left untreated, traction alopecia can lead to bald patches and permanent hair loss.

There are several treatment options for traction alopecia, including changes to your hairstyle, medications, and laser therapy. In some cases, surgery may be necessary to correct the damage caused by traction alopecia.

Hair pulling or twirling

common and uncommon causes of alopecia areata and telogen effluvium

Do you ever find your child twirling their hair or pulling on it? This may seem like a harmless habit, but it can actually lead to hair loss. Hair pulling or twirling is a type of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) that affects around 1 in 100 people.

Kids who suffer from this condition often have an irresistible urge to pull out their hair, usually from their scalp, eyebrows, or eyelashes.

While the exact cause of OCD is unknown, hair pulling or twirling is thought to be a way of dealing with stress or anxiety.

Kids who are perfectionists or who have low self-esteem are more likely to develop this disorder. Treatment for OCD usually includes therapy and medication.

If you think your child may be suffering from OCD, talk to your doctor. Early diagnosis and treatment is key in preventing further hair loss and other complications.

Scalp ringworm

In children, hair loss may be due to scalp ringworm, a fungal infection. The fungus invades and multiplies in the hair shafts and sebaceous glands, causing inflammation and hair loss.

The lesions are often round or oval and have a red border. They may be itchy. Ringworm of the scalp is treated with antifungal medications, either applied to the scalp or taken by mouth.

Scalp injury

clinical and epidemiological study to treat alopecia areata

Scalp injury is a common cause of hair loss in children. It can be caused by a number of things, including falls, blows to the head, and infections. Infections are the most common cause of scalp injury in children.

The most common type of infection is called impetigo, which is a bacterial infection. Other types of infections that can cause scalp injury include fungal infections, viral infections, and parasitic infections.

Scalp injury can also be caused by skin conditions such as eczema and psoriasis. Eczema is a condition that causes the skin to become itchy and red, and psoriasis is a condition that causes patches of thick, scaly skin.

Trauma to the scalp can also lead to hair loss. This includes injuries sustained from accidents or surgery.

Telogen effluvium

Telogen effluvium is a hair loss condition that typically affects the scalp, but can also affect other areas of the body where hair grows.

It is a type of alopecia, or hair loss, and is caused by a disruption in the normal hair growth cycle. The condition can be temporary or chronic, and can cause significant hair loss.

Telogen effluvium occurs when more hairs than normal enter the telogen phase of the hair growth cycle. In this phase, the hairs are in a resting state and do not grow.

Normally, only about 10-15% of hairs are in the telogen phase at any given time. When telogen effluvium occurs, more than 30% of hairs can be in this phase, which leads to hair loss.

Alopecia areata

Alopecia areata is a hair loss disorder that causes round patches of hair loss on the scalp and sometimes other parts of the body.

Alopecia areata is believed to be an autoimmune disorder, in which the body’s immune system mistakenly attacks its own hair follicles.

The cause of alopecia areata is not known, but it may be related to genetics or environmental factors.

Alopecia areata often starts with one or more small, round patches of hair loss on the scalp. These patches may enlarge and join together, forming larger areas of baldness.

In some cases, the hair loss may spread to other parts of the body, such as the beard, eyebrows, eyelashes, legs, arms, or trunk. The amount of hair loss can vary from person to person.


In conclusion, hair loss in children is a common occurrence that can be caused by a variety of factors. It is important to be aware of the signs and symptoms of hair loss in children, in order to get them the treatment they need.

If you are concerned that your child may be experiencing hair loss, please consult with a doctor.


Is it normal for a child to lose hair?

Hair loss in children is a topic that is often discussed by parents. Many parents are concerned when their child starts to lose hair. It is normal for a child to lose hair, but there are some things parents can do to help reduce hair loss. 

There are many reasons why a child may start to lose hair. Some of the most common reasons include stress, illness, and diet. If a child is losing hair due to one of these reasons, the hair will usually grow back once the cause of the hair loss is resolved. 

If a child is losing hair for no known reason, it may be due to alopecia areata, which is a type of autoimmune disorder. Alopecia areata causes the body to attack the hair follicles, which can lead to permanent hair loss.

What causes pediatric hair loss?

Pediatric hair loss can be a result of many different things. Here are some of the most common causes:

  • Infections – Infections such as scalp ringworm can cause hair loss in children.
  • Nutritional deficiencies – A lack of certain vitamins and minerals can lead to hair loss in children.
  • Hormonal imbalances – A hormonal imbalance can cause hair loss in both boys and girls.
  • Autoimmune diseases – Some autoimmune diseases can cause pediatric hair loss.
  • Trauma – Trauma to the scalp, such as from a fall or accident, can lead to hair loss.
  • Cancer treatments – Chemotherapy and radiation therapy can cause pediatric hair loss.

Which lack of vitamin causes hair fall?

There are many reasons why hair may fall out, including lack of vitamins and minerals in the body. One such vitamin that is essential for hair growth is vitamin B6.

A lack of this vitamin can cause hair to become weak and eventually fall out. Other vitamins and minerals that are important for healthy hair include biotin, zinc, iron, and copper.

If you are experiencing significant hair loss, it is important to speak with your doctor to determine if you are deficient in any of these essential nutrients.

How do you fix hair loss in kids?

There are many potential causes of hair loss in children, including genetics, illness, and some medications. If your child is experiencing hair loss, it’s important to see a doctor to determine the cause and find the best possible treatment.

Depending on the cause of the hair loss, there may be various treatments available. If hair loss is due to a medical condition, treating the condition may help to restore hair growth. If hair loss is due to a medication, your doctor may be able to prescribe an alternative medication.

In some cases, dietary changes or supplements may be recommended. If hair loss is due to genetics, there is no cure, but there are treatments that can help keep the hair healthy and prevent further thinning.

How do you treat thin hair in children?

There are a few ways to treat thin hair in children. One way is to give them a haircut that makes their hair look thicker.

You can also use a thickening shampoo and conditioner. If your child’s thin hair is caused by a health problem, you may need to see a doctor to help treat the problem.

About Author

Trichologist, cosmetologist, hair care expert

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