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By examining your hair, scientists can determine how stressed you are.

It is common knowledge that stress may cause hair loss; however, a recent study claims that scientists can assess the level of stress a person is experiencing by studying locks of hair.

Previously, professionals would utilise blood, urine, or saliva samples to detect the stress hormone cortisol.

However, the researchers behind the current study published in PLOS Global Public Health found that analysing the stress hormone through hair could also be an effective way to detect chronic stress.

Researchers examined hair samples from over 1,200 women, including 881 from Mexico and 398 from Iceland.

The researchers extracted hair from the root and examined the first 3 cm of strands.

Because hair grows a centimetre per month, this area represents the previous three months.

The study participants were also given a survey with ten questions on how stressed they were.

Women with the highest stress levels had 24.3% higher cortisol levels.

While cortisol is not just produced during stress, it is referred to as the “stress hormone” since it is largely secreted during the body’s “fight or flight” response.

Hair, according to study author Dr. Rebekka Lynch, could contribute in the diagnosis of chronic stress.