Why does our hair go grey as we age?

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Offline DoctorBeaver

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« on: 16/06/2007 08:25:53 »
Yes, I know it's down to reduced pigment - but why does it happen?
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Offline Karen W.

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« Reply #1 on: 16/06/2007 08:37:39 »
Perhaps it's part of the folicle dying..I am not sure!

"Life is not measured by the number of Breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away."

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Offline DoctorBeaver

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« Reply #2 on: 16/06/2007 08:39:26 »
Perhaps it's part of the folicle dying..I am not sure!

Personally, I think it's down to children  [:(!]
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Offline Karen W.

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« Reply #3 on: 16/06/2007 09:01:12 »
Could be thats what me gran me mom and everyone else in the world says.. and stress Biggie I think!

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paul.fr

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« Reply #4 on: 16/06/2007 15:58:12 »
The root of every strand of hair is surrounded by a tube of tissue under the skin that is called the hair follicle. Each hair follicle contains a certain number of pigment cells. These pigment cells continuously produce a chemical called melanin that gives the growing shaft of hair its color of brown, blonde, red, and anything in between.

Melanin is the same stuff that makes our skin's color fair or darker. It also helps determine whether a person will burn or tan in the sun. The dark or light color of someone's hair depends on how much melanin each hair contains.

As we get older, the pigment cells in our hair follicles gradually die. When there are fewer pigment cells in a hair follicle, that strand of hair will no longer contain as much melanin and will become a more transparent color - like gray, silver, or white - as it grows. As people continue to get older, fewer pigment cells will be around to produce melanin. Eventually, the hair will look completely gray.

Ofcourse, shock can also turn your hair grey.

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Offline Karen W.

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« Reply #5 on: 16/06/2007 19:39:32 »
I had a friend who as an adult ran an extremely high fever and was hospitalized for a long period of time with this High fever they struggled to keep her fever down. over the course of two weeks she started getting this weird odd path of white growth coming from out of the side of her head.Over the next couple months that patch of hair grew in white, not gray but white .. it never went back. It looks as if it were dyed.. the doctor said it was the fever as it began happening then and whilst in their care... This is what she told me... Have you ever heard of that?
« Last Edit: 16/06/2007 19:41:59 by Karen W. »

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Offline DoctorBeaver

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« Reply #6 on: 18/06/2007 14:03:21 »
So why does shock sometimes turn your hair white/grey?
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Offline kdlynn

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« Reply #7 on: 18/06/2007 17:03:03 »
and i've noticed that i have a few grey hairs that grow occasionally on my head, but only on the right side... why only on the right side?

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Offline DoctorBeaver

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« Reply #8 on: 18/06/2007 17:12:49 »
and i've noticed that i have a few grey hairs that grow occasionally on my head, but only on the right side... why only on the right side?

Are you by any chance left-handed?
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Offline kdlynn

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« Reply #9 on: 18/06/2007 17:39:31 »
no i'm extremely right handed. i can't really do anything with my left hand.

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Offline kdlynn

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« Reply #10 on: 18/06/2007 17:40:26 »
i'm pretty sure i only have a left hand to hold things while my right hand is busy. lol

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Offline DoctorBeaver

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« Reply #11 on: 18/06/2007 18:38:52 »
I asked because, when thinking, left-handed people tend to scratch their heads with their right hand & vice versa. I was just theorising that there may be a connection.
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Offline Karen W.

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« Reply #12 on: 18/06/2007 19:33:20 »
So why does shock sometimes turn your hair white/grey?

I don't know about shock, but her doctor told her(not me) that it was from an extremely high fever, In her case with the small round gray patch.. , The Elvira thing.. you know!

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Offline DoctorBeaver

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« Reply #13 on: 18/06/2007 19:45:23 »
"The Elvira" is an anagram of "Vile heart".
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Offline Karen W.

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« Reply #14 on: 19/06/2007 04:10:42 »
Well Yes You are right! Good with words DOC!

"Life is not measured by the number of Breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away."

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Offline Cut Chemist

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« Reply #15 on: 20/06/2007 07:46:04 »
It is interesting that melanin is the pigment that colors hair, and melanin is also the pigment that causes skin to tan when exposed to sunlight....

But sunlight bleaches hair, causing it to go from brown to blonde over the course of a summer.

Shouldn't hair get darker when exposed to sunlight and "tan" just like skin??
« Last Edit: 20/06/2007 07:47:56 by Cut Chemist »
 

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Offline DoctorBeaver

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« Reply #16 on: 20/06/2007 07:48:45 »
It is interesting that melanin is the pigment that colors hair, and melanin is also the pigment that causes skin to tan when exposed to sunlight....

But sunlight bleaches hair, causing it to go from brown to blonde over the course of a summer.

Shouldn't hair get darker when exposed to sunlight and "tan" just like skin??

 [???]
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Offline Karen W.

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« Reply #17 on: 20/06/2007 07:52:37 »
Good point!

"Life is not measured by the number of Breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away."

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Offline kdlynn

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« Reply #18 on: 20/06/2007 08:21:53 »
i don't know about blonde... but my hair is usually red by the end of the summer

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Offline DoctorBeaver

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« Reply #19 on: 20/06/2007 08:24:08 »
My eyes are normally red by the time the pub shuts  [:D]
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Offline Karen W.

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« Reply #20 on: 20/06/2007 08:29:09 »
Where is this pub? I think I might come visit!

"Life is not measured by the number of Breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away."

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Offline DoctorBeaver

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« Reply #21 on: 20/06/2007 08:33:59 »
Bring your AMEX  [;D]
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Offline Karen W.

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« Reply #22 on: 20/06/2007 08:36:01 »
LOL I don't do credit cards..LOL BUt I will MAKE DO!!!

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Offline DoctorBeaver

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« Reply #23 on: 20/06/2007 08:39:20 »
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Offline Reine

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« Reply #24 on: 20/06/2007 09:57:13 »
In contrast with skin that is burned by the sun, I think hair gets lighter with exposure to sun as the melanin is being damaged.

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Offline rosalind dna

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« Reply #25 on: 23/12/2007 16:59:49 »
Interesting
Rosalind Franklin was my first cousin and one my life's main regrets is that I never met this brilliant and beautiful lady.
She discovered the Single DNA Helix in 1953, then it was taken by Wilkins without her knowledge or agreeement.

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Offline iko

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Why does our hair go grey as we age?
« Reply #26 on: 23/12/2007 17:39:32 »
Can anyone explain why hair goes grey? Heard the most fantastic explanations, none of which really convinced me. Would really like to hear what's known about it.

(Yes I'm greying, but that's been going on for ages now, my brother has even darker hair and he started when he was in his early twenties...) [:I]


...did you check the other 'hair grayness' topics?  [;)]
« Last Edit: 23/12/2007 17:41:32 by iko »