Does a sunburn cause hair shedding?

Question

I have had a few burns on the scalp from a recent trip to a sunny destination. I notice that I am shedding more than normal in the last few weeks and am wondering if a sunburn can cause hair shedding?

 

Answer

A sunburn can cause a hair shedding in the form of a "telogen effluvium"  which can last a few weeks. It is the ultraviolet radiation rather than the heat itself that triggers the shedding. Ultraviolet radiation is a powerful inducer of hair cycle changes. A sunburn can cause a telogen effluvium (shedding) which can last a few weeks. Burns can cause inflammation which also drives shedding. Most with sun burn induced telogen effluvium find things settle in 3-6 weeks.




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