Millions of people worldwide, particularly women of color, have been using hair relaxers to straighten their hair for many years. However, the potential health risks of these products have surfaced only recently. The potential for brain damage from hair relaxers is one of them.
This article explores this topic in more detail to help you understand the potential health risks of hair relaxers and how to protect yourself.
What Are Hair Relaxers?
Chemical hair products called relaxers are used to straighten curly or coily hair. They function by dissolving the protein bonds in hair, which allows reshaping. Typically, harsh chemicals like sodium hydroxide, guanidine hydroxide, or ammonium thioglycolate are used in hair relaxers to make them work.
The Potential Health Risks of Hair Relaxers
Many health hazards have been linked to hair relaxers. The risk of irritation and burns to the scalp are among the most worrisome. Hair loss and breakage are other side effects of hair relaxers. Furthermore, the chemicals in hair relaxers can pass through the scalp and enter the bloodstream, where they may cause systemic health issues.
Can Hair Relaxers Cause Brain Damage?
Even though there isn’t any solid proof linking hair relaxers to brain damage, some researchers are concerned that these products could damage the brain. It’s due to animal studies showing that the chemicals in hair relaxers have neurotoxic consequences.
Researchers have found that hair relaxers’ high pH levels and chemical components, particularly sodium hydroxide, can harm the hair fiber, the scalp, and the skin. They did not, however, directly look at sodium hydroxide’s neurotoxicity on brain cells.
Findings from other studies showed that exposure to phthalates frequently found in hair relaxers during pregnancy was linked to worse cognitive development in kids. These findings indicate that hair relaxers could harm neurological health, but more research is needed to determine whether these products can damage people’s brains.
How to Protect Yourself from the Health Risk of Hair Relaxers
Hair relaxers pose many potential health risks, even though the evidence linking these products to brain damage is inconclusive. Use hair relaxers with caution and take precautions to safeguard your health if you decide to do so.
You can take precautions if you are worried about the potential health risks of hair relaxers. Using natural hair care products free of harsh chemicals is one option. You can also cut back on chemical hair treatments and relaxers.
Also, it is vital to seek legal counsel if you used hair relaxers or other personal care products and suffered a head or brain injury. The Nevada brain injury attorneys at Bourassa Law Group can help you understand your legal rights and pursue compensation for your injuries. Contact the Nevada brain injury attorneys at Bourassa Law Group at (800)870-8910 for a free consultation today.
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