Can A Nervous Breakdown Cause Hair Loss?

Can A Nervous Breakdown Cause Hair Loss

Can A Nervous Breakdown Cause Hair Loss?

Can A Nervous Breakdown Cause Hair Loss
John M

John M

Hi, I'm John. About age 30 my hair started receding. After trying lots of products I eventually decided on a hair transplant. And now I have my hair back.


Have you had acute bouts of anxiety and stress and noticed your hair is falling out? Acute anxiety is also known as a nervous breakdown.

Yes, you can experience hair loss if you have a nervous breakdown or experience prolonged acute stress. Alopecia areata is commonplace after a nervous breakdown, and you could lose hair in patches or all over your head and body.

Hair loss due to stress and anxiety

Stress and anxiety can cause hair loss in several ways. One way is through a condition called telogen effluvium, which is a temporary hair loss condition that can occur due to a physical or emotional stressor.

When a person experiences a significant amount of stress or anxiety, it can cause a significant number of hair follicles to enter into a “resting” phase, which is called telogen phase.

As a result, the hair falls out more easily and the growth of new hair is slowed down, leading to hair loss. This type of hair loss usually occurs about 2-3 months after the stressor occurred and can last for several months.

Another way stress and anxiety can cause hair loss is through a condition called trichotillomania, which is a compulsive disorder characterized by the recurrent pulling out of one’s own hair. People with this condition may pull out their hair from their scalp, eyebrows, eyelashes, or other areas of their body. The hair pulling behavior is often associated with stress and anxiety.

It’s worth noting that hair loss can have many causes, and it’s important to consult with a healthcare professional to determine the underlying cause of the hair loss and the best course of treatment.

Will hair loss from anxiety grow back?

Anxiety and hair loss have a complicated relationship, but in most instances, you can see your hair start to grow back when you have your anxiety under control.

Our adrenal glands were never meant to cope with constant stress and anxiety. As a consequence, you can have high levels of cortisol and adrenaline in your body for months and years if you can’t learn how to control your anxiety.

Cortisol and adrenaline are two hormones created by the adrenals when we are exposed to anxiety and stress.

However, the adrenals placed on top of each kidney do not have an on-off switch and can produce constant amounts of both hormones.

There is one little known fact about the fight and flight hormones. Cortisol switches off T-cells, temporarily exposing the immune system to be attached by any pathogen around.

Worse still, while the T-cells (t-cells kill off bacteria and germs that enter our body, the first line of defence) are not working, your autoimmune system can wreak havoc.

One profound effect is alopecia areata, an autoimmune system response that causes your hair to fall out. Sometimes you lose individual hairs, or your hair can come out in large clumps.

Alopecia areata can be very distressing for the individual experiencing losing hair in this way.

Telogen effluvium is a hair loss condition associated with shock. It is thought the hair follicles temporarily shut down due to shock or anxiety.

The good news is both of these hair loss conditions are not necessarily permanent situations, and once you have your anxiety and stress-controlled, your hair can regrow as before.

How do you know if you’re losing hair from stress?

Assuming that you live everyday life and do normal things, your life is only used to dealing with moderate stress and generally for short periods.

Short bouts of anxiety and stress cause no harm to us. Your body is designed to cope with being scared and deciding to fight or flight.

However, if you are experiencing prolonged stress and have extreme anxiety, even if it is irrational to everyone around you could experience hair loss.

Before hair loss, you may exhibit some other signs of stress and anxiety. If you feel irritable and snappy with your friend or family, these could be signs of stress.

Breaking down in tears is a classic sign that all is not well and you are experiencing overwhelming negative emotions.

If some of these symptoms are familiar to you and you have been experiencing emotional turmoil causing anxiety and stress, you could find yourself with hair loss to add to your problems.

Oddly some hair loss caused by stress is a self-fulfilling prophecy. Some of you are terrified at the thought of losing your hair and inadvertently introducing stress that results in your hair loss.

If you find yourself pulling your hair out when overwhelmed with anxiety and stress, it could be a sign of trichotillomania.

Trichotillomania commonly manifests itself in young girls, but it can happen to anyone at any age. You may find yourself pulling your hair from your head or other parts of your body.

Can stress-induced hair loss be reversed?

In most cases, stress-induced hair loss is only temporary, and your hair will grow back to normal in a period of 6 months to a year.

You can do certain things to help yourself to regrow your hair. You will need to be managing your stress levels adequately; your doctor can help with this.

Eat a healthy diet

Food plays a critical factor in hair regrowth, and it is vital to have a healthy and full of nutrients to support hair growth and rejuvenate your hair follicles.


Stress and anxiety often come with a poor diet where you find yourself comfortable eating junk foods and sugary foods or not eating.

Depleted vitamins and minerals are a significant concern, so taking supplements will promote hair regrowth and help relieve stress. Vitamin B1 is the stress vitamin. If you are feeling uptight, B1 can immediately affect your emotions.

Check out our Har Voske review.

Manage your stress

Some things can help you manage stress and anxiety. Exercise and outdoor activities offer relief from stress.

Walking briskly for 30 minutes each day will have enormous effects on your stress levels.

Yoga and meditation have their roots deeply implanted in stress and anxiety relief, and practising either or both will help with stress and regrowth your hair.

Managing stress is a must. If you can do it naturally, then all the better for you, and you will see your hair coming back in no time.

Can hair fall out from mental illness?

Mental illness is a vast subject. Mental illness comes in many guises and does not generally fit the person’s stereotype of doing crazy things outdoors.

Studies show that mental health conditions can be like an explosion in your body. Your emotions can be overwhelming, resulting in self-harm to find relief from some stressful trigger.

Mental health issues can lead to hair loss as well as many other ailments. Something as tiny and insignificant as a hair follicle is impacted by stress and anxiety.

The whole gambit of mental health issues is so complex to understand, but a common thread runs across mental health issues, and it is a loss of hair caused by anxiety and stress.

Of course, not everyone with mental health conditions will experience hair loss, but hair loss can be prevalent.

Top 5 Reasons to go abroad for a Hair Transplant

1. Save at least 60% on the cost

A hair transplant in Europe is at least 60% cheaper than in the UK. And most packages are all inclusive, including your accommodation and airport transfers.

2. Europe has some of the most experienced surgeons in the world

Europe has more clinics, which have been established and running for much longer than clinics in the UK. The price is also lower, making it more accessible for people.

Surgeons in Europe will have carried out hundreds, if not thousands more procedures than UK based surgeons. Because of this some UK clinics will bring in surgeons from Europe to carry out your procedure.

3. Hair restoration clinics in Europe are state or the art

Many facilities in Europe are dedicated hair restoration clinics. They only perform that type of treatment. As such all equipment, facilities, techniques and staff are specialists in hair restoration. 

Hair restoration is only now becoming more popular in the UK, so many UK clinics are general cosmetic facilities that carry out various procedures.

4. Get even more value by making your transplant into a holiday

Europe is such a popular holiday destination for many reasons, the culture, history, sights, cuisine, shopping, great weather, your money goes further, it’s widely English speaking, and it’s just 2 or 3 hours away by plane. 

The list goes on! So why not travel a few days earlier, grab a low cost Airbnb or hotel, take a friend or partner and enjoy the city for a few days before your transplant.

5. Hassle free process

It’s so easy to get an assessment and price. Contact the clinic, arrange an initial consultation in the UK with your surgeon, or do an online consultation by sending a few pictures and answering some basic questions. 

Once you’re happy, pick a date and you’re done! The clinic will send you all the paperwork and itinerary so you know exactly what’s happening. You don’t pay until you go for treatment. 

You just hop on the plane. A transfer car will meet you as you get off the plane and take you to the clinic. It’s such an easy process. Easy!

Top 5 Hair Transplant Tips

1. Know your post-op timeline – The key dates!

  • You need to take the upmost care in the first 7 days
  • You can leave the house after 7 days, but I advise you take at least 2 weeks off work.
  • You won’t be able to wear a hat or exercise for up to 4 weeks after.
  • Around 2 – 4 weeks your new hair will fall out, you’ll look a little red and sore – similar to sunburn.
  • Around 4 months your new hair starts growing and looking good.
  • By 6 months you can’t tell you’ve had a transplant.
You can get a haircut after the first month, or you can keep it short yourself with clippers until it starts to grow back.

2. Pick the right time to schedule your treatment

Good clinics will be busy, so you may have to wait 2 months to get an appointment – this is a good thing. So knowing that and knowing your post-op timeline (above) means you can plan the perfect time around your social or work calendar. 

If you have important social events coming up, particularly if you know you’ll be photographed then you may plan your transplant 6 months in advance, or wait until your calendar is free.

3. Set your expectations

If your hair has receded at the front you’ll want the clinic to draw an expected hairline on your head or on pictures of you as soon as possible. They’ll then also talk about the number of grafts or hairs you’ll need and how thick the result will look. 

The sooner you can establish this, the sooner you’ll know exactly what to expect. A good clinic will also take into consideration a natural looking hair line for your age and your face and head shape. Have an honest conversation and be open to their expert feedback.

4. Knowing what the journey home looks like

There’s no way around it, you’ll have to go out in public to travel home. The worst part is sitting at the airport for 2 hours or so whilst you wait for your plane. 

I found it was best to embrace it. People are nice for the most part and won’t stare, and if one or two do who cares – you will never see those people again! You may even be at the airport with other transplant patients, I wasn’t the only one! 

Take a travel pillow and have someone pick you up if possible, so you can exit swiftly and get back home as soon as possible. It’s natural to be self-conscious, but it’s over fast and well worth it.

Tip! Just take carry-on luggage to keep your check-in and wait time down.

5. Choosing the right clinic

  • Pick somewhere you can travel to and from easily
  • Check their reviews online, not just on their site!
  • Do they have a good quality website and professional looking emails?
  • Can you see actual case studies of previous patients online?
  • Do they have an address? Can you see it on Google street view?
  • Can you meet your surgeon for a consultation beforehand?
  • Do you know someone who’s been there before – first hand opinion is amazing!
John M

John M

Hi, I'm John. About age 30 my hair started receding. After trying lots of products I eventually decided on a hair transplant. And now I have my hair back.

Do you want to keep your hair without surgery? I get it … surgery can be expensive and frightening. Although it’s the most effective solution when things go bad and it helped me, you still experience some discomfort and have to take some time off from work.

Fortunately, researchers in Norway succeeded in stopping hair loss and promoting regrowth in 63.9% of test participants by using fish proteins!

Although not flawless … fish proteins, minerals, and antioxidants have a positive effect on strengthening hair.

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