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How Aging Changes Your Face and Body, Part 3

How Aging Changes Your Hair and Fingernails

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Aging and Hair
We all know about gray hair, which can start in the 30’s…or for some people, not at all.

Hair color is controlled by a pigment called melanin that is produced by the hair follicle.

With aging, the hair follicles produce less melanin.

Many older adults, in addition to becoming more gray, notice thinning hair. Hair strands, which are made of protein, begin to lose some protein and become thinner.

Most older adults experience some scalp hair loss as part of the aging process, from either male pattern baldness or female pattern baldness.

Aging and Fingernails
Some fingernail changes are a normal part of aging, including:

  • Slower growth
  • Less shine
  • More brittleness
  • Increased yellow color

If you notice other fingernail abnormalities such as pitting, increased ridges, or your nails change shape, it’s important to check with your health care provider.

For more information on hair and nail changes, including common nail problems you should look out for, see Aging Changes in Hair and Nails.

More Aging 101: Aging Effects on the Inside - Bones, Organs, Joints and Hormones

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