The occurrence of white hair with old age is obvious. But, when you notice them in your early 30s and sometimes, even 20s, it’s absolutely disheartening. Both gray and white hair are the result of your hair losing its pigment. When there is a significant reduction in the pigment, the hair turns gray. When there is absolutely no pigment present, it turns white. So what causes that?
Your makeup plays a big role in when or if you develop white hair. If you notice white hair at an early age, it’s likely that your parents or grandparents also had graying or white hair at an early age. You can’t change genetics. But if you don’t like the way your gray hair looks, you can always color your hair.
see more: Four ways to tame your gray hair
Everyone deals with stress from time to time. The consequences of chronic stress can include of sleep problems, anxiety, change in appetite, high blood pressure
Stress can also affect your hair. So if you’ve noticed a rise in your number of white strands, stress might be the culprit. This theory might also explain why some world leaders appear to age or gray faster while in office.
Vitamin B-12 deficiency
White hair at an early age can also indicate a vitamin B-12 deficiency. This vitamin plays an important role in your body. It gives you energy, plus it contributes to healthy hair growth and hair color. A vitamin B-12 deficiency is associated with a condition called pernicious anemia, which is when your body can’t absorb enough of this vitamin.
Your body needs vitamin B-12 for healthy red blood cells, which carry oxygen to cells in your body, including hair cells. A deficiency can weaken hair cells and affect melanin production
There’s also a link between premature white hair and smoking. It’s well-known that smoking cigarettes increases the risk for lung cancer and heart disease. The long-term effects, however, can go beyond the heart and lungs and affect hair. Smoking constricts blood vessels, which can reduce blood flow to hair follicles and cause hair loss. Additionally, toxins in cigarettes can damage parts of your body including your hair follicles, causing early white hair.
Can white hair be prevented?
The ability to reverse or prevent white hair depends on the cause. If the cause is genetics, there isn’t anything you can do to prevent or permanently reverse the color change.
If you suspect a health problem, consult a doctor to see if an underlying condition is responsible for white hair. If you treat the underlying health problem, pigmentation may return, but there are no guarantees.
If a thyroid problem causes white hair, re-pigmentation may occur after hormone therapy treatment. Taking vitamin B-12 shots or pills to correct a deficiency may also improve the health of hair follicles and return your natural color. If white hair occurs as a result of stress or smoking, there isn’t evidence to support the return of pigmentation after quitting smoking or reducing stress.