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Research Letter |

Hair and Scalp Care in African American Women Who Exercise

Christine S. Ahn, MD1; Poonkiat Suchonwanit, MD1,2; Capri G. Foy, PhD3; Phillip Smith, BA1; Amy J. McMichael, MD1
[+] Author Affiliations
1Department of Dermatology, Wake Forest School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, North Carolina
2Division of Dermatology, Faculty of Medicine, Ramathibodi Hospital, Mahidol University, Bangkok, Thailand
3Department of Social Sciences and Health Policy, Wake Forest School of Medicine, Winston-Salem, North Carolina
JAMA Dermatol. 2016;152(5):579-580. doi:10.1001/jamadermatol.2016.0093.
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This study surveys physically active black women to determine the most common hair care practices used to accommodate exercise, and seeks to provide recommendations for ideal regimens for hair and scalp care during and after exercise.

There are notable disparities in physical activity (PA) levels among different racial and ethnic groups.1 African American women comprise a population that deserves special focus because non-Hispanic black women participate in less PA than any other racial or ethnic sex group, yet have the highest prevalence of obesity and obesity-related conditions.24 In a previous study by Hall et al,5 38% of black women avoided exercise at times owing to hair-related issues, and 50% modified their hairstyle to accommodate exercise. This present study sought to survey physically active black women to determine the most common hair care practices used to accommodate exercise, and provide recommendations for ideal regimens for hair and scalp care during and after exercise.

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Ideal Hair Care During Strenuous Physical Activity Based on Hair and Scalp Symptoms

The ideal hair care during and after strenuous physical activity, based on the presence or absence of certain common scalp and hair-related complaints. Dermatologists can particularly play a role in providing suggestions for treatments after exercise.

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