African women tok about di shame wey dey follow wen dem lose dia hair

Bandile bald head Image copyright Bandile
Image example Bandile say if to say she march break, she for fit prevent her baldness

Plenty years of styling, braiding, pulling, relaxing and sew-sew of weavon don leave one 31-year-old aspiring South African model with bald head.

Bandile wey no be her real name tok say every time she remove her weave for salon, she go ask make dem relax am, put another weave for di same day. She add say she no dey carry her natural hair.

Dis kain tin na type of hair loss wey dem dey call traction alopecia, and na for secondary school she notice say her hair don dey fall comot.

But di woman wey dey live for Johannesburg no dey alone - di condition dey affect one-third of African women, according to study wey dey medical journal Clinical, Cosmetic and Investigational Dermatology.

Study wey dem do three years ago of almost 6,000 women of African origin by Boston University's Slone Epidemiology Center show say almost 48% of di pipo wey dem follow tok don suffer hair loss for di top of dia head - wey traction alopecia don cause.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image example Sabi pipo dey draw ear give women of African origin to think twice about dia hairstyling to avoid hair loss

Sabi pipo say dis number fit high pass so as pipo no dey like to tok about am.

"If we all gats remove our wigs for work, 8 out of 10 women go get hair issues. Na something we no dey tok about. We dey ashamed of am" Bandile tok.

"Di doctor tell me say I pull my hair from di root when I use glue to weave am. Dem no remove di glue and di thing damage di root of my hair"

'Lai-lai tori about natural hair'

Bandile dey blame di problem on di belief wey tok say braids and plaits go epp hair grow.

"Di thing wey dem tok na say weave dey manageable dan natural hair"

Some sabi pipo say say women across Africa dey spend around $6bn (£4bn) ontop weaves, braids and wigs every year.

"Every woman dey feel polished when she wear weave. Half of us dey feel more beautiful when we wear long weave and get long hair. You look beautiful and pipo go accept you for society," she tok

"Every black woman one grow dia hair long. Dem go do tiny-tiny weaving ontop di hairline wey go dey pull am."

Image copyright Boitumelo Monyaki
Image example Boitumelo Monyaki say her dey grow again but e nevr still dey full

Dis no be new tori for Susan Magai, wey get beauty salon for Tanzania main city of Dar es Salaam.

She tok say most women dey use di wrong glue for dia weaves or dem go leave dia weaves or braids for longer time. She add say dem dey advise dia client to leave dia weaves for two weeks but some dey leave dem for 3 months and some go start to dey lose their hair.

Ms Magai salon dey offer steam treatment and she dey open di pores wey dey di head and go fit allow hair to grow.

"Di steaming dey like baking di hair. We go use coconut oil and apply am for di scalp. Den we go cover di hair and bake am with machine," she tok and add say e fit take months before e go dey visible.

Institute of Trichologists wey dey UK tok say steaming fit dey good for African hair because di thing dey add moisture and fit prevent am from breakage. Di association also warn say steaming alone no fit epp hair growth after hair loss.

'Childbirth cause my bald head'

Jumoke Koso-Thomas wey be doctor for di UK dey contribute to blog wey dey focus on black women's health. She tok say hairstyling dey contribute to di majority of alopecia cases, and for some na genetic situation.

For example, she tok say hair loss na symptom of problems with thyroid or gall bladder.

Dr Koso-Thomas add say childbirth, birth control pills and stress dey make women lose dia hair even though e dey temporary.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image example Vitamin-rich diet dey epp promote healthy hair growth

Boitumelo Monyaki, 39-year-old financial management student from Johannesburg go bald eight years and she believe say e dey link to di birth of her first child for 2002.

"I don learn say plenty woman dey lose dia hair wen dem born and e dey happun since my great-grandmother time" she tok

Ms Monyaki tok say losing her hair affect her confidence but she learn to accept say her hair no go fit grow back to di previous fullness.

She more epp for African women wey dey deal with hair loss, she say even salon no dey treat di problem.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image example The hair industry for Africa na multi-million dollar business

Dr Koso-Thomas advise say healthy balanced diet wey contain vitamin C, vitamin B and selenium, wey dem dey find inside fresh fruit and vegetables, dey epp nourish di hair root and fit epp stop traction alopecia - and avoiding stress too fit prevent hair loss.

She also believe say girls and young women need to check how dem dey style dia hair.

"We gats to tell dem: 'Try not to do too much to your hair. No dey put too much chemicals and no dey always braid your hair. Make e rest. Give am time to recover and do different styles.'"

Bandile tok say dis advice go gain more gorund as women dey go for 'natural' look.

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Bye bye Brazilian hair, welcome natural hair

She tok say dem dey feel dia natural hair and dem dey embrace dia Africanness. She add say she herself don tire to dey always wear wig.

"I just wan go work with my head full of my natural hair."

Bandile use peppermint remedy to open up her scalp and when di thing fail she use minoxidil - one blood pressure drug - wey dey cause hair growth as side effect.

She tok say di hair dey grow but di thing become expensive so she stop am.

Di model get plans to see trichologist for June so she fit do hair transplant.

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