Wax causes white hair

Gray hair: does it come overnight?

"I don't let my hair grow gray". In such phrases it becomes clear that the color change on the head of hair is seen by many as a result of stress.

But can the gray hair really relate to living conditions? And is it possible to turn gray overnight?

Strictly speaking, there is no such thing as pure gray hair. The optical impression of the gray hair comes from the mixture of pigmented and pigmentless hair. There is no single gray hair in it. It's either white. It arises in the hair roots, which over the years slow down the production of the color pigment melanin and eventually stop completely. Because the supply of pigment stem cells in the hair roots is fixed from birth. When it is exhausted, the hair no longer produces any dye.

Grayed with grief?

In fact, there is a link between psychological stress and the appearance of gray hair. This is what scientists at Duke University in America have found out. According to this, chronic stress can damage the DNA and thus also make the hair turn gray. The hair roots are surrounded by a close-knit network of nerves and react in a variety of ways to stress messengers that can even be formed directly in the hair roots. Their effect is not limited to the pigment cells, but also affects the hair-producing cells as a whole. Stress can not only discolor the hair, but also cause acute hair loss.

White hair overnight?

In individual cases, people even literally get gray hair overnight. In such cases, the cause can often be found in the inner soul of the person concerned. However, hardly anyone loses their entire hair color within just a few hours. Usually white hair was already present. Severe shock can also trigger an autoimmune disease in severe cases. The body's own defense cells are directed against the pigmented hair. But stress-related hair loss can also give the impression that the person concerned has turned gray within a short period of time. If the dark hair falls out due to a growth disorder, the impression arises as if the person became white-haired overnight. Such spontaneous hair loss could also explain the story that Marie Antoinette turned completely gray the night before her execution.

Gray hair as a sign of illness?

There are studies that establish a link between gray hair and heart attacks or show a higher risk of osteoporosis. It seems to be proven that estrogens have an influence on dye formation in hair. Very gray hair in the 40s can therefore indicate an increased risk of osteoporosis. There is also a (very rare) disease called alopecia areata diffusa, which can cause pigmented hair to fall out within a short period of time and gray hair to be left behind. If people get white hair before the age of 20, it is usually due to an illness. This can be caused by an iron deficiency or a thyroid disease. Successful treatment of these diseases can also bring the color back into the hair.

Caring for gray hair properly

Even if you often have the feeling that gray hair is stubborn and dull, the hair structure is the same as that of normal colored hair. With the aging process, the hair density decreases over time, the hair grows more irregularly and the main cellulose of the hair, keratin, becomes weaker. Thus the hair becomes thinner, drier and also more sensitive. It looks dull and dull. A lot of white on the head can also cause a yellow tinge. If you want to avoid this yellow effect, use color shampoos or care products that contain blue color pigments. Shine sprays help against dull and dull hair. Oils and waxes smooth the surface and reflect the light back again. This also makes the hair look shiny again.

Important NOTE: The information is in no way a substitute for professional advice or treatment by trained and recognized doctors. The contents of t-online cannot and must not be used to independently make diagnoses or start treatments.