3 doctors weighed in:

Can you actually get old and develop gray hair if you are ill for long periods of time?

3 doctors weighed in
Dr. Colin Kerr
Family Medicine
2 doctors agree

In brief: Gray hair

Yes.
Persistent illness often leads both to nutritional deficiencies and to side-effects from medications. A common example is patients who have cancer where their chemotherapy causes severe hair damage. Think of chronic illness as a process that accelerates aging. Focusing on a healthy diet with routine vitamin supplementation is probably the best thing one can do in this situation.

In brief: Gray hair

Yes.
Persistent illness often leads both to nutritional deficiencies and to side-effects from medications. A common example is patients who have cancer where their chemotherapy causes severe hair damage. Think of chronic illness as a process that accelerates aging. Focusing on a healthy diet with routine vitamin supplementation is probably the best thing one can do in this situation.
Dr. Colin Kerr
Dr. Colin Kerr
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Dr. Heidi Fowler
Psychiatry

In brief: YES. Reasons to gray

Early. 1. Genetics.
2. Age 3. Stressors. The age of initial graying is largely a matter of genetics. However stressors such as nutritional deficiencies, traumatic head injuries, low vitamin b levels, zinc deficiency, severe illness, surgery and marked emotional stress may impact earlier depigmentation in people who are already predisposed to gray hair. In general – genetics plays the biggest role.

In brief: YES. Reasons to gray

Early. 1. Genetics.
2. Age 3. Stressors. The age of initial graying is largely a matter of genetics. However stressors such as nutritional deficiencies, traumatic head injuries, low vitamin b levels, zinc deficiency, severe illness, surgery and marked emotional stress may impact earlier depigmentation in people who are already predisposed to gray hair. In general – genetics plays the biggest role.
Dr. Heidi Fowler
Dr. Heidi Fowler
Thank
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