Type 2 diabetes would seem benign were it not for the threat of rising blood sugar levels – the main sugar found in blood. It is an important source of energy and provides nutrients to the body but having too much of it can inflict damage on the vessels that supply blood to vital organs. When this occurs, sufferers may begin to notice their hair falling out.
Hair usually goes through three phases.
The first phase is known as the active growing phase and lasts around two years.
During this phase, hairs grow at a rate of one to two cm per month.
The next phase is known as the resting phase lasting around 100 days.
Once the next phase commences some of the resting hair falls out.
When a person has type 2 diabetes, these hair phases can be interrupted thus slowing down hair growth.
Having type 2 diabetes therefore could also cause hair loss.
READ MORE: Type 2 diabetes – the sign when you go to the toilet
Uncontrolled or untreated diabetes can result in a person’s blood sugar levels becoming too high, said Medical News Today.
The health site continued: “Persistently high blood sugar levels can lead to damage in various tissues, organs, and blood vessels within the body.
“Damage to blood vessels can restrict blood flow, resulting in certain cells getting less oxygen and nutrients than they need.
“This deficiency can negatively impact the normal growth cycle of hair follicles, which can lead to hair loss.”
Endocrinologist Dr Kevin Pantalone said: “Often what happens with symptoms in type 2 diabetes is that people minimise it or rationalise them and they get worse until they become severe enough that they have to see someone.
“They have excessive weight loss or are really tired of peeing all night.
“Because symptoms of diabetes are often subtle or non-existent, especially around the onset, it’s important to see your doctor regularly for a check-up and testing.”
If you have noticed your hair is falling out and you suspect it may be due to high blood sugar levels, speak to your GP about the next steps you can take to help lower your levels.