Alopecia means hair loss and alopecia in children can be caused by a variety of conditions.
Disorders of Hair & Nails
Fungal nail infections, or onychomycosis, are more common on the toenails than the fingernails. Onychomycosis tends to run in families because of an inherited tendency, but not everyone is susceptible. It is rare in children unless one or both parents are infected.
Telogen effluvium is the name for temporary hair loss that follows some stress to the system. In a normal healthy person's scalp about 85% of the hair follicles are actively growing hair (anagen) and 15% are resting and shedding (telogen). A hair follicle usually grows hair for 4 years then rests for 4 months. The old hair then falls out and a new hair begins to grow. When the hair rests it changes into a club hair. When the new hair starts it forms under the resting club hair and pushes it out. It is normal to lose up to about 100 hairs a day on one's comb, brush, in the basin or on the pillow, as a result of the normal scalp hair cycle.
Twenty nail dystrophy is a benign disorder of healthy children and is characterized by ridging, pitting, and a rough, lackluster appearance of most or all fingers and toenails. Although these nail changes tend to persist, in some children the nails improve with age over a period of several years. There is no treatment for this condition.
Stay connected to Children’s Health!