The History of Trichology
Trichology is a fancy sounding word and no, it’s not that old yet. Trichology is, “the science of the scalp and hair in health and disease”. This scientific study itself has been around for centuries but the word trichology came about in 1902 with the foundation of the oldest professional association, the Institute of Trichologists. The Institute of Trichologists was founded in London, England and took up the study to advance the science of hair. Trichology provides knowledge on the various causes of hair loss and this knowledge lays down the foundation for understanding the function of the hair and scalp.
Trichology comes from the Greek word, trichos, meaning “hair”. It is often thought to stand between cosmetology and dermatology and bridges the gap between hair and skin health. Sometimes it’s hard to separate the two because most people are more concerned about their hair. In reality it is more important to take care of your scalp because the health of your hair stems from there.
Trichologists are able to diagnose and treat hair loss, hair conditions, and scalp problems. They look into the causes of several conditions such as, hair breakage and hair thinning. Some initial conditions that may affect the scalp are:
Eczema—This is the most common form of dandruff caused by a genetic sensitivity to malassezia yeast.
Psoriasis—This is an autoimmune condition that is in the scalp. It is characterized by small dry, silvery flakes that are attached to the skin. Psoriasis is thought to be a genetic condition that has environmental triggers like stress.
Irritation of the Skin—Irritating chemicals can be found it relaxers and some shampoos, conditioners, and other hair treatments. These chemicals can cause an itchy dry scalp and flakes. Irritation can also be caused by excessive heat or cold/dry environments.
It is important to see a trichologist when you have scalp or hair health issues. The history of trichology might not be the most extensive but it is a field that constantly strives to better understand hair and scalp health. It is important to advance hair study to better protect and care for the hair that we have.