Every girl and woman wants to have long lashes. Full lashes are a symbol of youth and beauty. It is very normal to lose some hair over your body, including the eyelashes. The life of an eyelash is about five months and after this period it is normal to fall out and a new one to start growing. However, if there is an excessive number of eyelashes falling out, could be a sign of a problem.
The medical term for losing eyelashes is madarosis. It is not considered as a disease and may occur for many different reasons.
Losing eyelashes can be a big issue for many people and can reflect on the person’s self-esteem. In the other hand eyelashes are responsible for keeping any dust or sweat away from your eyes, so the loss of your eyelashes can be also harmful to your eyes.
As mentioned, there are many different reasons to lose your eyelashes, but the good news is that most of the cases the problem is temporary. It is very important to detect the root cause because once eliminated your lashes will recover.
Here we will discuss the common reasons for eyelash loss:
Aging is the most natural part of our life cycle. As we age we notice small changes in our appearance. Our skin becomes looser, we have more and more wrinkles and age spots.
Thinning eyelashes is also something that we might notice while the time passes. This happens for different reasons: One of the reasons could be that just as we age, our follicles age too. Eyelash growth cycle has three stages: anagen, when your eyelashes grow, the catagen, or so-called transition stage and the telogen, when your eyelashes just stay there all grown up. After the last stage, they just fall out. Your lashes continuously cycle through these stages and with advancing through the years, eyelash follicles can slow down the process of growing new eyelashes or even stop producing new lashes.
Another reason could be the fact that your skin becomes dryer, which can cause eyelashes to lose the ability to retain moisture. The drier your eyelashes are the more damage on them.
Hormone changes due to aging are also a factor. During perimenopause and menopause, our body slows down the progesterone and estrogen production. Estrogen is a hormone, playing an important role in collagen production and maintaining the hair thick. When the estrogen level starts to decline, usually when we are in our forties, lashes get lighter and shorter, because of the destruction of hair follicles. At that time you may notice that your eyes look tired, smaller and older.
If you are approaching the menopause, you may notice that you have to shave less often. But if you’re younger and your estrogen is low, we recommend you to see your doctor, who might put you on a hormone treatment.
Hormone levels also change during pregnancy and after birth. Luckily losing your eyelashes during this period is only temporary and once your hormones are back to normal your eyelashes will recover. For more information read this article about losing hair and eyelashes during pregnancy.
You can’t stop the aging process, process, however, there are a few options if you experience eyelash loss, caused by menopause. The first thing to do is to visit your doctor so that you both can discuss a hormone replacement therapy. Exercise more and stress less! Opting for a healthier diet is essential. Add Omega 3 Fatty Acid to your diet, which contributes to balancing your hormones. Good sources of omega-3 fatty acids are oily fish, chia seeds, walnuts, soy extracts, and olive oil. You can also take Omega 3 supplements after consulting your doctor.
Extra virgin coconut oil is another effective remedy for balancing your hormones. Eat 2 to 3 tablespoons every day for a few months. Coconut oil can be used also in cooking. Chasteberry is an herb that creates a balance between progesterone and estrogen. Consult your doctor for the dosage. To boost your lashes we also recommend this personally tested eyelash serum.
Everything you do for healthier life will affect your lashes in a positive way.
Another common hormonal factor is the thyroid gland. A thyroid disorder can cause slower hair growth and loss of eyelashes. Eyelash loss is often an early sign of hyperthyroidism. An under-active or overactive thyroid can disrupt the hormonal balance of the body. The good news is that once you treat the thyroid problem your lashes will stop falling.
The root of your eyelashes is very delicate and is very important to treat it with care.
Constantly rubbing your eyes can accelerate lash loss, besides the fact that can also form wrinkles.
Normally lashes fall out on their own, as part of their normal growth cycle. When interrupt this cycle by forcing the eyelash to fall out earlier, they can take a long time to grow back.
Some eye irritation or even infections can cause itches, so if you need to rub your eyes, be gentle when doing it and always remember to keep your hands clean.
Rubbing while removing your makeup also should be done with care. Remove your makeup gently by using a cotton pad and one of the best gentle makeup removers.
Allergy to Mascara
It is important for you to know, that there are chemical contents in some mascaras, which can make your lashes more breakable and can cause eyelash loss. There are certain chemicals, especially in the waterproof mascaras that can trigger allergic reactions, damage your eyelashes, and make them fall out. If you are prone to allergies, or you already had a bad experience with mascaras is better for you to avoid some ingredients in the tube, such as parabens, fragrance, aluminum powder, and triethanolamine. If you are not sure about those ingredients, look for mascaras, designed for sensitive eyes, which are 100% naturals and will preserve your lashes.
In some cases, mascaras can cause dermatitis and conjunctivitis. Dermatitis is an inflammatory reaction of the eyelid skin, caused by contact with a trigger substance like those in your mascara. Conjunctivitis, also known as a “pink eye”, can be caused if some allergens fall into your eyes, irritating the thin membrane covering the surface of your eyeballs, called conjunctiva.
If you think you might have an infection, causing the itchy and red skin around the eyes, you should seek treatment as soon as possible. Wash your face regularly, and don’t touch your eyes as this can spread the infection. Take some break from your mascara. I know is hard but is very important to give your eyes some time to heal. Meanwhile, you can start using natural oils as home remedies for your lashes. Making a homemade eyelash growth serum is also a great idea. Your lashes will thank you.
To avoid allergies and eyelash loss, avoid mascaras of inferior quality or ones with an expired date. I know you keep your favorite mascara from last year, taking the little left from inside, but stop. A fresh tube of mascara should be used for three to six months and then, should be replaced with a new one.
Clean your make up every night and never wear it while you sleep. Choosing natural formulas for sensitive skin is always a good idea.
Stress is controlling our overall health. Many diseases relate to stress. It can cause hormonal changes in our body. When we are stressed we can skip a meal, have problems to fall asleep. Our metabolism changes and the level of cortisol fluctuate in our body. These fluctuations can affect our hair in our brows and lashes. When our body is under pressure it can’t absorb vitamins. When our body is not healthy, our lashes aren’t either.
Do you bite your nail, when you are stressed? Did you know that there are also people who pull out their own hair? This is called Trichotillomania and celebrities like Megan Fox, Charlize Theron, Justin Timberlake, and Olivia Munn suffer from this anxiety disorder.
Trichotillomania is basically an impulse control disorder, mostly caused by anxiety and stress, when a person twists, rubs or pulls out hair. People with trichotillomania usually pull hair from their scalp, eyebrows, and eyelashes. This usually begins in childhood or early adolescence and this behavior can continue into adulthood.
Most common treatment from Trichotillomania is known as Habit Reversal Training. In other cases, people find a solution in fake eyelashes and makeup, just like Olivia Munn.
Some Health Conditions
As mentioned, stress is responsible for many health conditions. It can cause Telogen Effluvium and Alopecia Areata.
The hair growth cycle has 3 stages. In the first one, your hair is growing actively, the second one is the transition stage and the last one is the resting stage, also known as telogen stage. At the end of the cycle, the hair falls out. Telogen Effluvium is a condition where more hair than normal prepare to fall out. This usually happens two to three months after a major body stress, such a long illness, major surgery or an infection. Is common to happen after childbirth where the hormone levels drastically change.
In most of the cases this problem is affecting the scalp, however, in some severe cases can affect the eyebrows and eyelashes. The condition is completely reversible and this condition doesn’t damage the follicles permanently
Alopecia Areata is an immune system disorder causing hair loss. Immune system cells attack the hair follicles. The Alopecia Areata first become noticeable on the scalp, then begins to affect eyebrows and eyelashes.
There is no cure for this but the you can treat the symptoms. In many cases, the lost hair will grow back, but the same individual may experience some crisis in his life.
Eye infections such as Blepharitis and Demodex can also result in loss of eyelashes.
Blepharitis is an inflammation of the eyelids and eyelash follicle. It occurs when the glands got irritated, causing redness, itching, burning, and sometimes can lead to eyelashes falling out, especially if your skin around your eyelash line gets dry. This kind of infection only causes loss of eyelashes and not the general kind of hair loss from the scalp. Most of the time people get it in both eyes, but also there are cases when the infections appears only in one eye. Blepharitis may be caused by some allergies, parasitic infestation or some bacterial infection. There is a close connection between people with dandruff on their scalp, eyelashes or eyebrows and this infection. Those people seem to be more prone to Blepharitis. It can be very tempted to rub your eyes for a temporary relief, however, this can cause scarring of the follicles, causing your eyelash to grow back incorrectly.
This infection cannot be cured but can be treated and controlled with a proper eyelid hygiene. It is important that you wash your eye and apply a warm compress for five to ten minutes every day. You can also mix the eyelid-cleaning solution with a warm water and scrub your eyelids with a cotton pad twice a day. See your doctor if there is no improvement. Don’t wear makeup while you have Blepharitis symptoms.
Apart from this, another infection that can cause eyelash loss is Demodex folliculorium.
Demodex are parasitic mites that live in hair follicles and can be found on almost everyone’s eyelashes, usually without any harm. However many piles of mites, also called demo falcon mite, into a single follicle can cause irritation and rubbing this irritation may lead to eyelashes falling out.
Most cases of Demodex mites people can treat at home. You can visit your doctor if you are concerned and experience severe symptoms.
Tea tree oil is one of the best ways to treat Demodex infestations. You can rub equal parts of tea tree oil and macadamia nut oil on your eyelashes every night for two months, carrying out that the oil doesn’t get in your eyes. Use a tea tree oil shampoo, washing your hair and eyelashes.
Lavender oil is also good option to kill eyelash mites. Simply rub the oil on your eyelids before you go to sleep.
Avoid any makeup during the mite infestation.
Certain medications that doctors prescribe to treat some health problems, can cause hair loss, including loss of the eyelashes.
A research shows that oral anti-acne drugs such as Isotretinoin, some anti-cholesterol drugs, thyroid balancing drugs, blood pressure medications, and a high dose of vitamin A, medicines that treat arthritis, depression, gout, and heart problems have all been connected to madarosis. Anabolic steroids also can cause eyelash loss side effect. Some women even experience hair loss, while taking birth control pills. Fortunately, many of the cases lashes grow back as soon as the medication has been stopped.
Some medical treatment also causes loss of the eyelashes. There could be chemotherapy as well as the removal of cataracts. Many patients suffer a complete loss of all body hair, eyelashes, and eyebrows. In this case, the only thing a person can do is to allow his body to recover completely from the treatment, because once it is completed, the hair begins to grow back.
If you suspect that certain medicine is affecting your eyelashes, or one of the common side effects listed in the medical information leaflet is hair loss, discuss it with your doctor if there is a possibility to replace the medicine. The key is eating healthy and well balanced to keep you lashes healthy, because the health of our lashes depends on the food we eat.
If you go on extreme diet skipping meals rich in Vitamins H, C, E and B6 then are very possible that your lashes will become drier and more fragile, and later fall out. Many people suffering from anorexia and bulimia also suffer from hair loss. This is because the nutrients a person is taking are not enough to feed the body, therefore nothing is left for the eyelashes. If a person stops eating proteins, he will notice eyelash loss in 2 to 3 months. If this person resume eating proteins, meaning, meats, eggs, fish, nuts, seed and beans, the eyelashes will start growing again
Treatment And Prevention
The first step in treating eyelash loss is to determine the cause of the damage.
If the thinning of your eyelashes are starting to concern you, the best is to visit your dermatologist. He will know which tests you need and come up with a proper treatment.
If the case is Trichotillomania some good therapy and counseling session is recommended in order to find the root of this behavior disorder. Usually is all about self-control issues.
If the hair loss is related to some medication, then you can ask your doctor to find equally effective medication. Sometimes this is not possible, so then you can just wait to get better and once you recover you can have your eyelashes growing back. If it is a chemotherapy, then there is nothing you can do, but wait a few months after the end of the therapy.
Avoid wearing mascara for some time, if there is an allergic reaction.
If menopause is the cause, hormone replacement therapy can make all the difference. Eyelash enhancers are also a good solution to boost your eyelashes and have them longer and pretty.
While we can’t do anything to stop the aging process, is good to know that for more of these conditions there are measures we can take to avoid this from happening.
Keep good hygiene for your lashes. Make sure you remove all makeup and dirt from your face before you go to sleep. Chose some gentle makeup remover that will not irritate your eyes. Soak a cotton pad with makeup remover and gently press it on your lids for 15 seconds. This will help dissolve the mascara, making it easier to remove without the need of scrubbing.
Don’t rub your eyes, especially if you have an allergy. Rubbing your eyes can not only twist and damage your lashes but also can push more dirt and makeup into your eye area. Massage them gently with clean hands only.
When using an eyelash curler, be careful not to pull your lashes. I suggest you invest in some eyelash curler with quality to prevent damages to your lashes.
Following a proper healthy diet can be detrimental to your eyelashes’ health. Add to your diet foods rich in proteins and vitamins like fish, eggs, beans, soy, yogurt, carrots, broccoli, and peppers. They will keep your lashes healthy and will stimulate eyelash growth at the same time.
Olive oil, Castor oil, and Coconut oil are natural products that can play an important role in the eyelash recovering process.
There are many eyelash enhancers these days that help the growth of healthy eyelashes. Their basic ingredients are Provitamin B5, hyaluronic acid, and panthenol, for conditioning the lashes and maintain the moisture. One of these enhancers that produce real results is Rapid Lash.
Did you know that there are also eyelash transplants? They, of course, are only for severe cases. The process is basically transferring the scalp follicle to your eyelash area.
Another not that drastic solution is applying false eyelashes. They are artificial or natural strips of hair, glued to your eyelash area to make it look like you have thicker and fuller eyelashes. It is important to know what kind of fake eyelashes look the most natural on you, depending on your eye shape.