Can wearing a tight ponytail cause my hair to fall out?

A patient with thick beautiful hair was upset because the hair around her hairline was thin and broke easily. She wanted a check of her hormone levels, but it turns out that her tight ponytail was actually the root of the problem. A condition known as traction alopecia occurs when tight hair elastics, hair extensions, or tight braids cause tension and breakage of the hair shaft. Typically, hair loss is at the hairline, part line, or wherever there is a lot of pulling and tugging.
Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)
Wearing a tight ponytail, especially over long periods of time, could potentially lead to hair loss. Doctors even have a name for this type of hair loss: "traction alopecia," or hair loss due to chronic pulling on the hair. Women who wear their hair in tight cornrows are at risk for this type of hair loss, too, as are men who wear hairpieces attached to their existing hair. Consult your dermatologist for more information about traction alopecia and hair loss.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.