I am a 57 year old caucausian. In January I colored my hair with the same product I have used for years. It was professionally done. The color burned but since I had used the product before I left it on for about 15 minutes. My scalp was tender and seemed to be desensitized some to temperatures. I had a stylist look at my scalp a couple of weeks later and she said it was alittle red but it seemed not to be inflammed. My hair was still thick and the texture did not seem to be damaged. I figured I had a mild burn and it would heal..6 weeks later I go in and she tells me I better get to a dermatologist. When she finished with my hair it looked like I had lost about 1/2 of my hair compared to the last time she had styled it. I had not noticed a large difference in my hair until that day. I have alot of hair with lots of body. I checked my drain at home and it showed I had been losing hair , more than normal. I have had problems with my scalp being red for years and alot of hair loss is not unusal but it always comes in thick..As soon as she finished with me I went to urgent care and they gave me a steroid oil to use on my scalp, I went back in a couple of days and they prescibed a steroid pack. I then went to a dermatolgist and she said she did not think the hair loss was from the burn but from dermatis. She was young and I really tend to disagree with her. I have not had any itiching on my scalp, and never had dandruff, it was scaling when she seen me as my scalp had peeled some. I have read that the more damage to the hair follicle and scalp the faster the hair falls out. It seems that my loss has been greatest after the first month. My scalp continues to be very pink to red in some areas. I am using a follegen shampoo and conditioner and a folliegen spray and cream and emu oil. I believe I must have had an allergic reaction to the product. Does anyone have any information on chemical burns from hair dyes, treatment and is there anyway other than just waiting to determine how long it will take to come back and are there any signs to look for on the scalp to indicate the amount of damage. I am concerned it was not treated until 7 weeks after the burn. There seems to be some texture change on some areas. Prior to this service my hair was past my shoulder blades and very long layers, I had it cut this weekend to about 4 inches on top and collar lenght in the back, that got alot of the dryness and damage off.
Chemicals can work their way down the hair shaft to get at the growth centers which lies at the bulb (5-6 mm deep) or at the bulge (about 2-3 mm from the skin surface). For heat burns, you should have a second or third degree burn to the skin and see it quickly, but for chemicals burns, it might take weeks for the full damage to be known. If the chemical burn causes complete loss of the hair growing centers, then the hair will fall out in 7-14 days, but if there is partial damage to just part of the growing follicle, this may take more than a month to understand the damage. Varying insults may force hair follicles to go into their resting phase (telogen) and after 2-6 months, it may go into its growth phase (anagen). In your situation, hair loss may be seen as early as a few days after the injury or it may also take weeks to see the full impact.
Just so you know...the more chemicals you use on your hair over the years the worse it will be for you in the future. Your hair will thin away to almost nothing. They suggest using perms/colorants etc only every two years or more. The effects of chemical burns can cause permanent damage, and may take a very long time to heal.
I suggest using arnica gel ( available at health food stores ) instead of the emu oil. Or one part arnica with 3 parts pure coconut oil...massage your scalp with this every night before bed. This should help your scalp and promote hair growth.
*Trivia* If you have ever used chemical treatments in your hair, they will ask you NOT to donate your locks to the Cancer Foundation. They use a special dye for the "pink" hair colorant for donations.
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