Before completing medical school, I played in Super Bowls 19 and 23. At the time, I always wondered if my football helmet was causing any hair loss. After all, it’s something I wore for several hours every day and it was hot and sweaty and it was pulling my hair every time I took it off and put in on. Professionally speaking, there probably was some traction damage done at the time, but it’s very difficult to quantify. It also wasn’t the most hygienic environment for the follicles, but my hair seems to have been pretty healthy.
So all told, it probably wasn’t causing too much damage and the hair loss you see and the transplants Wesley Welker, Tom Brady and some of the other stars had wasn’t secondary to them wearing their helmets…as far as I know.
So don’t blame the helmets if you notice some thinning when Joe Flacco or Vernon Davis un-botton their chinstraps and take off their helmets as it’s probably something hormonal or genetic.
Dr John Frank, MD