Alopecia signs can hit suddenly and without warming – many times serious hair loss follows within a 6 month period after initial signs are noticed. These telltale signs can help you make an early diagnosis and consult with your doctor to figure out which steps should be taken next.
1. Small, Coin Sized Bald Patch. The most common (and the most obvious) sign of alopecia is a small, bald patch on the head. These are generally the size of a coin and smooth, and many patients notice the initial hair loss in the shower or after waking up, since they may find hair on their pillow. Hair loss can also occur in other places – beards, eyebrows, arms, and any other place where there are patches of hair.
2. Spotted, Rough or Dented Nails. Oddly enough, alopecia can have an effect on your fingernails and toenails. Look for small white spots on your nails, as well as tiny pinpoint dents that can show up or nails that become rough and flat (lose their shine). While having changes in the appearance of your nails can be caused by other things, they’re often an early sign of alopecia.
3. Thin, Short Hairs. The appearance of thin, short hairs that resemble an exclamation point also point towards the possibility of alopecia. These hairs are usually representative of fractured hairs and in mass can look like hair thinning.
Alopecia can be an emotionally trying time, so make sure to take the steps to build a strong support system through friends and family – and even online support groups. You can also find more information on our website about wigs and hairpieces for alopecia patients.