Does stress cause hair loss? Well, hair loss is definitely stressful, and unfortunately, that stress can also make you lose more hair.

While male pattern baldness (the most common form of hair loss) is genetic and unrelated to your mental state, there are three other types of hair loss that can be exacerbated or even brought on by high stress levels:

Alopecia areata occurs when the body’s immune system attacks hair follicles, ultimately causing hair loss. A number of factors are thought to bring it on, including anxiety and depressive symptoms.

Telogen effluvium is marked by the thinning or shedding of hair after hair follicles are prematurely pushed into the telogen (resting) phase. This is usually brought on chronic stress, a traumatic incident, or a poor diet.

Trichotillomania is an impulse control disorder characterized by urge to pull out one’s own hair–either from your scalp, eyebrows or other areas of your body. Various emotional states, such as feelings of anxiety or frustration, can cause its onset.

Unlike male pattern baldness, these three types of hair loss are not permanent. If you’re able to address your stress and return to a healthy emotional state, your hair will likely grow back. But, if you think you might have alopecia areata, telogen effluvium, or trichotillomania, schedule an appointment your primary care physician to get to the root of the problem.

The information provided in this article is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. You should not rely upon the content provided in this article for specific medical advice. If you have any questions or concerns, please talk to your doctor.