For those of you who have plucked those pesky gray hairs from your head, you don’t have to fear that they are coming back with a vengeance. The idea that pulling a gray hair will cause 10 more to grow in its place is simply not true.
If you’re not convinced, let UAMS family and preventive medicine physician Dr. Shaskank Kraleti, M.D., explain the medical science behind this myth.
“Plucking a gray hair will only get you a new gray hair in its place because there is only one hair that is able to grow per follicle. Your surrounding hairs will not turn white until their own follicles’ pigment cells die.”
Dr. Kraleti explains that your hair turns gray or white when the pigment cells in the follicle surrounding the hair die. “When you pluck a hair a new one will grow in its place and because the pigment cells are no longer producing pigment, this new hair will also be white.”
Does this mean you should continue to pluck those gray hairs? Dr. Kraleti doesn’t recommend plucking or pulling the hairs out.
“If there is a gray hair you must get rid of, very carefully cut it off. Plucking can traumatize the hair follicle, and repeated trauma to any follicle can cause infection, scar formation or possibly lead to bald patches.”