Are my hair extensions safe?

I frequently get asked if wearing hair extensions is okay. Often it is fine, but one needs to monitor over time if any hair damage is occurring. Individuals feeling pain, "pins and needles" should consider loosening the extensions or changing the method of application. Individuals showing clinical signs in the office of hair damage may also consider changing the method of application.

Consider the patient shown in this picture. She has been using extensions for some time now. She has a few broken hairs (labelled B) and several miniaturized hairs (labelled V for vellus) in any area that did not previously show miniaturization. These two signs are evidence of hair damage. A recommendation was made to change the extension in this case and treatment with a corticosteroid was given to reduce inflammation that is common in such cases of early traction alopecia.

Dr. Jeff Donovan is a Canadian and US board certified dermatologist specializing exclusively in hair loss. To schedule a consultation, please call the Whistler office at 604.283.1887

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