Is there a connection between excessive sun exposure and hair loss?
There is a good reason to believe that a link exists between excessive sun exposure and hair loss. Just as excessive sun exposure can cause premature aging on the face, neck and hands, it can also effect losing hair. UV rays from the sun can react with molecules of oxygen on the skin’s surface. This turns them into free radicals which act as scavengers and damage the surrounding areas of tissue. What occurs is a perpetual chain reaction which can even impact hair follicles. Free radicals basically attempt to steal electrons from the molecules of nearby cells. And this becomes detrimental to their structure.
Aging the follicles would of course speed up the rate of hair loss. The effect of sun exposure on the hair tends to occur most noticeable in the crown area.
Identical twin studies have been conducted to observe the effect of lifestyle habits on siblings who have the genes for male pattern baldness. The twin who tends to spend the most time out in the sun without proper protection tended to show a greater extent of loss in the crown.