Hair wigs might be a safer alternative for people who love experimenting with every hair colour that is under the sun. In what could be bad news for hair enthusiasts, a new research has found out that the common practice of coloring hair may lead to an increased risk of breast cancer.
In the study published on Wednesday, researchers at the National Institutes of Health found that using permanent hair dyes and chemical hair straighteners can result in a higher risk of developing breast cancer, compared to women who don’t use the products. They also found that the risk ups with women with women who treated their hair with the products on a more regular basis.
“Researchers have been studying the possible link between hair dye and cancer for a long time, but results have been inconsistent,” Alexandra White, one of the study’s authors.
“In our study, we see a higher breast cancer risk associated with hair dye use’’ the researchers said.
The study, however, found “little to no increase” in breast cancer risk among women who used semi-permanent or temporary dyes.
For the study, which is featured in the International Journal of Cancer, researchers reviewed data from a previous study that involved 46,709 female subjects. It showed that women who frequently permanent hair dye in the year prior to the study were 9 percent more likely to develop breast cancer than the women who did not use permanent dye.
Another finding of the study also linked cancer and the use of chemical hair straighteners and cancer.
Women who used hair straighteners at least every five to eight weeks were about 30 percent more likely to get breast cancer, according to the study, though its authors say the results need to be replicated in future studies.
Dale Sandler, one of the study’s authors, said “We are exposed to many things that could potentially contribute to breast cancer, and it is unlikely that any single factor explains a woman’s risk,” Sandler said in a statement. “While it is too early to make a firm recommendation, avoiding these chemicals might be one more thing women can do to reduce their risk of breast cancer.”