Several changes happen to hair as you age including thinning, hair loss and graying.

People can begin to experience thinning hair starting as early as the twenties in the form of male or female pattern baldness. This type of thinning occurs in a “pattern” which is commonly recognized, and begins with thinning hair fibers in the affected area followed by loss of hair in the same areas. The extent of loss is generally determined by genetics.

Another type of thinning and loss occurs generally after fifty and has a more global pattern that is it affects the entire scalp. Even people with no history of pattern loss will generally experience some form of age related thinning over time. Thick hair becomes thinner and sparser nearly universally after a certain age. Eyebrows and eyelashes are also affected. As if to make matters worse, thick, coarse hair begins to grow in other places, including the face, ears, and lips!

Graying of hair is caused by a loss of the pigment melanin over time. As the follicles age, they tend to produce less melanin and progressively gray to eventually white hair color (hair which fully lacks pigment) results. Graying occurs nearly universally, but the onset of graying can be quite variable, some people starting as early as the twenties. It normally begins in the temple regions and then spreads over the frontal scalp and back. It can affect hair anywhere on the body, but generally starts with scalp hair.

The best advice for healthy hair is to prevent problems in the first place. Eat a healthy nutritious diet and apply only safe organic products to your scalp and hair!

Dr. Ryan Welter is the founder of New England Center for Hair Restoration and a leader in the field of hair restoration. Follow him on Twitter @DrRyanWelter