Categorized | Causes

Computers as a Cause of Hair Loss in Men

hair loss and computers

In the US, the Census Bureau has been collating information on computers and the usage thereof for almost 30 years. It’s plain to see from the annual statistics that the technological evolution has expanded substantially in later years. In 1984, approximately 8.2% of all homes in the US had computers compared to the 2012 figures of 94.8%. This is a substantial increase but unsurprising. There has been much research over the years into possible causes of hair loss in men and these include – genetics, smoking, and stress. These are proven to have a connection to premature balding but, now, research is looking into the increased usage of computers as a concern too.

While new theories will always come and go, there is probable cause for concern when it comes to radiation emitted from home appliances, although this does not just strictly relate to computer usage. Radiation is not a new threat within the home environment as electric lights and radio waves all emit radiation as well as sunlight. But people are now becoming more exposed to ionizing radiation. This comes from the home appliances that we use the most – our refrigerators, our TV’s and our computers.

Red LED - alarm level of electromagnetic radiation

Red LED – alarm level of electromagnetic radiation

Research at the Environmental Medicine Laboratory at the Shanghai Institute of Pediatrics has revealed a connection from any long-term exposure to electromagnetic radiation to a number of conditions including: low sperm viability, irregular menstrual cycle, diminishing memory and hair loss. At this time there is no proof absolute that prolonged exposure to computers can increase or cause hair-loss but Dr Yan Chonghuai who is leading the research into the environmental influences on people’s lives states that, many who use computers consistently do experience problems.’ So speculation and research continues.

Advice from the US Environment Protection Agency is to limit prolonged exposure to appliance radiation, even though there is no evidence currently where either computers or exposure to those home appliances such as televisions, have resulted in any sort of injury. Regarding male hair loss, it is true that many men do work long hours at their computer stations, and are therefore bombarded constantly with levels of radiation that could over time cause damage to health. These same individuals may also be more likely to play online games during their spare time and this exposure could lead to a number of significant disorders. Increased mental fatigue and progressive tension will affect the central nervous system; it can cause autonomic disorders such as blood pressure, heart problems and even lung problems. But any skin vasoconstriction dysfunction where blood vessel contraction reduces the supply of blood can cause malnutrition within the hair follicles.

Sleep problems could also impair hair growth as well as the potential to lose hair. A lack of sleep can be interconnected with computers and computer games too through over-stimulation.

Good health is important irrespective of how hair loss may be caused, so ensuring a vitamin and mineral rich diet is consumed is a step in the right direction. Sufficient levels of vitamin A can help to maintain healthy function of the tissue of the scalp as well as to decrease the levels of fat that could accumulate within the hair follicles.

Of course radiation issues and concerns are not likely to dissipate with new inventions by way of hand-held computer games and computers being purchased all of the time. Although there is no scientific proof or exact correlation – yet, between computers and male hair loss, it may become more evident in years to come as the current younger generation grows up as they would have experienced the ultimate in exposure.

PVC plastic is toxic

PVC plastic is toxic

There are other areas of concern and these relate to the cables used for computers as they are made out of Polyvinyl Chloride – commonly known as PVC. During the manufacturing process, hazardous raw materials are used to make vinyl chloride monomer and this is highly toxic and carcinogenic.

It’s used because it is relatively inexpensive and can be made soft and flexible by adding a variety of chemical additives and it is this form that is used as a coating or insulator for cables.

Computer cables are consistently under pressure and everyday usage can cause toxic substances to be emitted including the highly toxic dioxin. This substance can be a cause of both skin problems and hair loss. Research also indicates that anyone who has worked continuously at their computer for a 5 year period or more could even show evidence of disease to the endocrine and nervous systems so the effects could be far -reaching.Research continues into the reasons for male hair loss even though there are now ways to reverse the effects of baldness. While tests continue, it makes sense to take a proactive approach to health and to try to reduce the potential threat that exists from electronic radiation at home and at work.

Currently some experts are advising people to limit the impact of electromagnetic radiation and to undertake the following:

  1. Unplug any electrical appliances when they are no longer in use. This may not be possible for all equipment but it does make sense.
  2. Turn off the computer or, place it in sleep mode when it is not in use. Avoid using the computer in the bedroom and the benefits may be experienced quite readily.
  3. Aerate the working room every 40 minutes.
  4. Try to sit further away from the computer where possible.
  5. Avoid having a large monitor at your workstation. A laptop screen is a better option as it has fewer emissions.
  6. Taking a break regularly is vital. Suggestions include turning off the monitor. Resting eyes. Changing work tasks. This may not help long-term exposure or the threat of hair loss but it is a healthier way to work.
  7. Restrict the number of Wi-Fi, networks or routers in the house.
  8. Introduce houseplants into your home or work area. NASA discovered that some cactus plants can absorb the electromagnetic radiation that is emitted from computers.
  9. Use an EMF meter (Electromagnetic Field) to check emission levels as this will give greater levels of protection and peace of mind.