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Children's Health

3 yr old hair loss

09/23/2009

Question:

My daughter is 3 and this morning i was brushing her hair and a big clump of hair came out. we just recently moved and now use well water, could this be the cause?

Answer:

Thank you very much for the question.  It is difficult to say what the cause of the alopecia given the information that you have shared. There are a number of causes of alopecia in children including:

1) Traumatic:  aggressive combing or brushing
2) Infection: fungal infections of the scalp (tinea capitis)
3) Systemic disorders: anemia, thyroid disease
4) Vitamin deficiency: vitamin a or zinc
5) Environmental exposures: arsenic, selenium, other heavy metals

I would talk with your pediatrician about potential disorders that could cause this.  In addition, I have attached a website to the EPA that talks about well water safety.  Having your well water tested for some heavy metals to insure that the levels are low. 

Related Resources:

EPA Drinking Water

For more information:

Go to the Children's Health health topic, where you can:

Response by:

Stephen E Wilson, MD, MSc Stephen E Wilson, MD, MSc
Assistant Professor of Clinical Medicine
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati