Which Treatment Is Best For You?

Take our quiz to find out!

Does Stress Cause Your Hair to Turn Gray? Recent Study May Answer

Does stress cause your hair to turn gray? Researchers at Harvard may have found an answer.

Anecdotally we have believed that stress can cause our hair to turn gray.  If you have ever seen pictures of a president’s first day in office versus their last, they certainly leave with a head full of gray hairs. So does stress cause your hair to turn gray?

For ourselves, at the first sign of gray hairs we often blame our children, spouse, or work for these stress induced gray hairs.  Well it turns out we may have been right, as researchers at Harvard may have found a link between stress and premature gray hairs in mice.

The study, Hyperactivation of sympathetic nerves drives depletion of melanocyte stem cells, was published this month in the journal Nature and found a link between the sympathetic nervous system, which is responsible for our fight-or-flight response, and premature greying of hair in mice.  So how does this happen?

The hair follicles get their pigment from melanocyte stem cells, which deplete as we age.  However, the researchers found that during the fight-or-flight response, the sympathetic nerve in the follicle releases norepinephrine, which is causing the pigment producing cells to activate and deplete prematurely.

More Research Is Needed

More research needs to be completed to see if the link is the same for humans, but the researchers believe that the sympathetic nervous system and pigment producing stem cells in mice are very similar to those in humans.  Overall, it is important to understand that stress can have significant impacts on our hair and body.

Even if we are still not 100% sure that stress can cause hair to turn gray prematurely in humans, we know it can impact the health of the hair and cause shedding.  We cannot always mitigate stress completely, but it is important to be proactive to try to de-stress and we all should consider stress reduction activities like yoga and meditation.

Lastly, it is important to utilize treatments like vitamins and supplements and low-level laser therapy that can counteract the effects of stress and improve hair health and decrease shedding.

Posted by Your Medi Tresse Team

Back to Blog

Take Control Of Your Hair Loss

Speak with a Medi Tresse medical expert in person or virtually and get your personalized hair loss treatment plan.

Our Locations

Boston, MA

888 Worcester Street, Suite 95
Wellesley, MA 02482

Medical Director: Mary Wendel, MD

Phone: (774) 314-3900Visit Medi Tresse Boston Office

Worcester, MA

108 Grove Street
Worcester, MA 01605

Medical Director: Mary Wendel, MD

Phone: (774) 314 3901Visit Medi Tresse Worcester Office

New York, NY

65 W 36th St, 11th Floor, NY, NY 10018

Medical Director: Mark DiStefano, MD

Phone: (347) 704-2370Visit Medi Tresse New York Office

Westchester, NY

2 Overhill Road, Suite 320
Scarsdale, NY 10583

Medical Director: Mark DiStefano, MD

Phone: 914-704-3070
Visit Medi Tresse Westchester Office

Chattanooga, TN

7305 Jarnigan Rd, Suite 110
Chattanooga, TN 37421

Medical Director: Deborah DiStefano, MD

Phone: 423-664-4494Visit Medi Tresse Chattanooga Office

Welcome to Medi Tresse

The Medi Tresse team is composed of experts in female hair loss. We are committed to offering innovative, non-surgical treatments for hair rejuvenation in women. Whether you are simply looking to increase your hair’s thickness or want to stop more extensive hair loss, Medi Tresse has a wide array of solutions ranging from platelet-rich plasma therapy to low-level laser therapy.

Contact Us

You can reach us by phone at one of our 5 convenient locations or by email at info@meditresse.com

Sign up for our Newsletter

linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram