UAE Tap Water and Hair Loss
Hair loss is a common complaint among expats living in the UAE. Especially when they first arrive in the country, it can be surprising to see how much hair ends up in the drain after each shower, or how many extra loose strands seem to be pulled from the brush each morning.
With so many expats experiencing this problem, there has to be some correlation between moving to Dubai and losing your hair...but what exactly is it? We conclude its a mix of all factors: the water, the weather and the constant exposure to air conditioning.
Tap water in the UAE contains calcium, iron, copper, magnesium and silica, among others. These are known to have a drying effect on the scalp and hair. Some of these build up on the scalp, choking hair follicles — and leading to the hair fall. Desalinated water is a cause of hair dryness. Due to the polluted seawater, treatment plants add more chlorine to kill bacteria, which can damage hair follicles.
Apart from other causes, including treated water, Vitamin D deficiency is linked to hair loss. Over 85 per cent of UAE residents suffer from Vitamin D deficiency or insufficiency and the condition seems to be more prevalent during the summer season. The lifestyle choices of the country’s residents including the lack of outdoor activity are the reasons attributed to this. Women in the UAE have even lower levels of Vitamin D as due to religious and cultural reasons — there is a heavy use of abayas.
To combat the desalinated water, we recommend to install a shower filter that will remove traces of harmful chemicals. A daily intake of 10,000 IUs of Vitamin D supplements would help balance the deficiency.