Anatomy of Hair

The hair on our scalp can be divided into two parts, the root and shaft. The root part of hair is in the skin (epidermis)of scalp. The hair root is surrounded by a pouch like structure called follicle. The base of hair root is in the shape of a bulb. This bulb is indented by capillaries and nerve fibers. The cells in the center of bulb divide. The newly divided hair cells push the previous cells up. The cells which move upwards die slowly forming hard hair shaft.

The hair shaft has three layers the cuticle, medulla and cortex.
Cuticle is the outer layers and protects the inner layers. It is transparent. Healthy cuticle gives a shiny appearance for hair and unhealthy cuticle gives lifeless look
Medulla is the innermost layer composed of large cells.

Cortex is the layer between cuticle and medulla. This contains pigment and keratin. Cortex determines the bulk and strength of hair.

The hair follicle contains oil secreting glands which make the hair shiny .Stress and illness diminish secretion of oil and pigments causing graying of hair.

According to Ayurveda the hair is considered as a tissue which uses the same nutrients of bone and considered as a tissue which is formed as bi-product of bone tissue.

Normal hair growth cycle: - physiology of hair growth
Each hair on our scalp grows approximately at the rate of 1 centimeter per month. This growth continues for 2-6 years. When the hair attains full growth it rests for 2-3 months and is later shed.

A new hair starts growing in its place. Thus at any given point of time 10 percent of the total hair on our scalp is in a resting phase and 90 percent of the hair is in growth phase.
As a part of this hair growth cycle it is normal for every body to experience a little hair fall every day. Any condition in which the hair fall is more than normal is termed as hair loss. Hair loss can affect anybody irrespective of age and gender.

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Dr.Savitha Suri is an ayurvedic Consultant Physician. She has an experience of 26 years in the field of ayurveda. The content is copyrighted to Dr.Savitha Suri and may not be reproduced on other websites. You can contact her for free online ayurvedic consultations at drsavithasuri@gmail.com
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