Yearning for the latest hairstyle to be very costly with researchers suggesting that tight braiding or weaving of hair could lead to permanent hair loss, a factor that is often seen especially among African Americans.
Lead researcher Dr Angela Kyei, of the Cleveland Clinic, Ohio, studied the effect of tight braiding and weaving of hair in more than 320 black women and found that nearly 69 percent of the women experienced a type of balding known as central centrifugal cicatricial alopecia, or CCCA.
CCCA is a form of balding that begins at the crown of the head and was thought to occur due to use of hot combs to straighten curly hair. However Dr Kyei said that she did not find any link between usage of hot combs and CCCA and said that it was caused due to braids and weaves.
"I won't tell you not to braid your hair, but I don't want you to braid it so tightly that you need to take pain medication. If there is any take-home message from this study, it is that hair grooming is not the only thing you should look at in these patients. If you have hair loss, specifically if you have the central type of hair loss, which is permanent, you need to seek medical attention", Dr Kyei added. The study has been published on the Archives of Dermatology website.