What Is A Trichologist?

What Is A Trichologist?

Trichology is the study of the hair and scalp and those that work in this field are known as trichologists. The word is derived from two ancient Greek words -  ‘trichos’ which means hair and ‘logos’ which means the study of.

A trichologist works to determine disorders and diseases of the scalp & hair and combines both holistic and medical approaches.

In this article we take a look at what exactly trichology is and what it involves. Keep on reading to find out more.

What is a trichologist and what is trichology the study of?

As mentioned above, a trichologist is a person who specialises in the study of the hair and scalp - also known as trichology. They’re experts at looking into and diagnosing a wide array of hair conditions, relating to both the hair and scalp.

From hair loss to scalp disorders, they can find out the underlying causes behind any issues you have and help to address the needs of the individual. Using their expertise and knowledge, they’ll be able to recommend appropriate treatments moving forward and help you maintain healthy hair and scalp function.

Trichologists don’t tend to perform surgical procedures, instead they will diagnose what the problem is so you can go and find an appropriate professional to sort out the issues you’re having. This is where someone who deals with scalp pigmentation might come in useful for example.

What training does a trichologist do?

Trichologists undergo specialised training that deals with areas of dermatology and cosmetology. Some deal with nutrition but this really depends on the individual and the course they’re looking to go down. From formal education and hands-on experience to some specialised certification programs, specific training programs vary depending on the institution and region. Some of the main elements of trichologist training include:

  • Learning the anatomy and physiology behind hair, including the hair follicles, the scalp and the surrounding tissues
  • Learning to identify and diagnose an array of hair disorders such as fungal infections, psoriasis and alopecia
  • Learning how to diagnose disorders, hair pull tests and trichoscopies.
  • Finding out about the different treatments for hair and scalp conditions
  • Discovering the impact lifestyle factors, stress, hormones and nutrition can have on the hair and scalp
  • Learning how to work with patients including establishing a rapport, communication skills and how to provide the best care for the patients

Can trichology stop or diagnose hair loss?

If you’re experiencing hair loss, it’s important to get it sorted as soon as possible. Luckily, a trichologist can diagnose hair loss through examination and diagnostic tests.

Once they’ve done this and assessed the different factors that could contribute to hair loss, they can put together a plan of action.

The treatment which will be recommended will depend on the different factors that might be attributed to the hair loss.

This could be hormonal imbalances, nutritional deficiencies, autoimmune conditions, lifestyle factors and scalp infections.

Using techniques such as those listed above (a trichoscopy or hair pull tests) they can pinpoint why you’re experiencing hair loss and what to do. Some of the treatments which might be recommended includes:

  • Topical treatments that can help to promote hair growth and prevent any more loss. This might include solutions containing ingredients such as finasteride or minoxidil which can aid in the above.
  • Oral medications such as dutasteride or finasteride that helps inhibit the hormone DHT which is linked to male-pattern hair loss.
  • Taking nutritional supplements that can contribute to healthy hair growth
  • Laser therapy to help promote hair growth
  • Micropigmentation - a cosmetic treatment where small needles deposit dots of pigment on the scalp to give the appearance of thicker hair

These are all different treatments that can be done to help improve your scalp and hair both for health and cosmetic reasons. The exact plan will be devised based on what’s best for your individual situation.

Why should you see a trichologist?  

There are many reasons you might look to see a trichologist. This includes:

  • If you’re experiencing hair loss. You might notice your hair is shedding, thinning or that you have bald patches. This can be distressing and you’ll want to find out why it is and be put on a course of action to help stop it from getting worse
  • If you have scalp conditions such as dandruff, psoriasis or scalp infections
  • If you have a scalp and hair disorder such as alopecia, telogen effluvium or trichotillomania. A trichologist can find out and diagnose this for you.
  • If you want a hair restoration procedure and want to find out the various options open to you prior to making a final decision
  • To get personalised and preventative care for your hair and scalp issues 

Can trichologists prescribe medication?

In most areas, trichologists aren’t able to prescribe you with medication for your hair and scalp issues. Seeing as it’s considered a ‘non-medical’ field, they focus more on diagnosing and discovering what the issues are that you’re experiencing, then telling you how to fix them as opposed to prescribing medication.

They will find out the issue then suggest non-invasive methods, topical treatments or lifestyle interventions. If prescription medication is seen as necessary, they can refer the person to a medical doctor or dermatologist who can sort this out and get them the care they need.

Can trichologists do hair transplants?

Trichologists don’t tend to perform hair transplant procedures themselves as this tends to be conducted by qualified surgeons.

What is the difference between trichology and scalp micropigmentation?

While both of the above relate to hair and scalp care, they are very different. Trichologist focuses on the study and diagnosis of hair and scalp issues.

Micropigmentation is a non-cosmetic procedure where tiny dots are tattooed onto the scalp to mimic hair follicles and can camouflage hair loss.

To find out more about scalp micro pigmentation, what it can do for you and to have any questions answered, please book a consultation with us at Scalp Nation. One of our friendly team members would love to help!

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