Gray Hair

Woman with gray hair
No matter what your age, sex, or ethnic background is, when you find your first gray hair it is a reminder that you are no longer young and are getting older. It is almost as if that gray hair is taunting you and saying you are getting older! Everyone reacts to this differently and has a different way to deal with this sign that they are getting older.
After all who wants to think about the prospect of looking like their grandma? This enhances the social stigma of going gray and causes stress the day the gray hair arrives. However, gray hair can be quite lovely on many men and women and maybe it is time for society to start embracing gray hair instead of trying to hide it behind masks.
Why do We Get Gray Hair?
When we age, the pigment in our hair follicles begins to die. Hair follicles that have less pigment cell produce less melanin. Melanin is the chemical that is responsible for the color of the hair. This decrease causes the hair to become transparent and appear to be white, gray or sliver. This is a natural occurrence and usually affects people from the age of 30 on.
Most men start going gray at 30 and for women around 35. These are just averages and people of all ages can start going gray. There are even children that can show signs of gray hair and may have to endure ridicule. Our genes are what determines the age we start going gray. However, with each decade after 30 the chances of going gray increases by ten to twenty percent.
The process of getting gray hair can typically take a whole decade to completely turn the entire head of hair gray. Scientists state that in addition to age and genes, there are other causes for gray hair as well. A lack of B12 is said to cause gray hair and smokers typically are more likely to get gray hair. In fact, smokers are almost four times as likely to have gray hair. When you know this fact, you will realize how many smokers that you know that have gray hair or are going gray. Thyroid imbalances and Werner’s syndrome can also cause hair to turn gray.
Preventing Gray Hair
While there are plenty of products available to prevent hair loss, there is not really a product to cure grey hair. However, a product called Melancor is relatively new. It is a tablet that produces melanocytes, increasing melanin pigments and claims to prevent gray hair. There is another product called Promel that works in a similar way. However, there is not a lot of information available about the effectiveness of these products.
The most popular way to deal with gray hair is by dying it. The question is, should we be going to the salon every couple of weeks to disguise our gray hair or should we simply embrace it for what it is and consider gray hair glamorous.
Human Nature or Self Obsession?
Over the years, there have been many men who are called dignified and sexy with their gray hair seemingly adding to their sex appeal. This is just not the same for women, but why? Over the years, society has developed this stigma that a woman with gray hair is passed their prime. While you can list a number of actors who have gray hair, it is difficult to think of any women. The reason it is nearly impossible to name a woman celebrity who wears her gray hair proudly is because most women celebrities are hell bent on covering up their gray locks.
The question is, is this just human nature or is it truly self obsession? In the world today, the saying growing old gracefully is not considered and it is paramount to retain one’s youthful looks, especially if you are a celebrity.
Myths about Gray Hair
There are several myths that are associated with gray hair. One is that you can go gray overnight from a shock or trauma. The only thing that can cause this to happen is a rare disease called alopecia areata. This particular condition will cause the dark hair to stop growing and the gray hairs continue to grow. This will give the impression that you have gone gray overnight.
Another myth is that if you pluck a gray hair out that two will grow in its place. There is absolutely no evidence that supports this. If this is your way of dealing with your gray hair, then pluck away.
One other fable is that people who have dark hair will get gray hair faster. This is simply an illusion because gray hair shows up more on people with dark hair, which makes it seem that they have more grey hair than they actually do.
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