This unique form of alopecia affects mostly women, although not exclusively. I say unique because traction alopecia is the only type, save for the taking of medication, that is self-inflicted.
Traction alopecia is caused by prolonged and regular stress on the scalp. This usually happens by wearing a tight hairstyle that pulls on the hair, like braids and tight ponytails. It can also be caused by ongoing use of hair extensions, wigs and damaging styling products. Basically anything that pulls on the hair or damages it can cause traction alopecia.
Aside from hair loss, symptoms include tenderness of the scalp, redness, soreness and irritation. The frontal hairline is usually worst affected, and this is the area where hair can appear to thin first.
This condition can last for a while, but as long as the routine that caused traction alopecia in the first place is stopped, hair usually grows back over time. Some people use minoxidil to try to speed up the regrowth process, but the best remedy is to stop wearing any hairstyles that pull at the hair and using strong chemicals on the hair until the scalp is healed.