|This article may rely excessively on sources too closely associated with the subject, potentially preventing the article from being verifiable and neutral. (June 2013)|
Trichology (from Greek θρίξ, gen.: τριχός, "hair") is the branch of dermatology that deals with the scientific study of the health of hair and scalp. Trichologists themselves are not normally licensed healthcare workers, although members of the medical profession can undertake courses and/or careers within trichology. Trichology can be used in forensic studies of hairs to find suspects. Forensic trichology can determine the approximate age, body mass, race, and other important traits of the hair's owner.
Trichologists are hair and scalp specialists (one type a skin specialist) who diagnose the causes of hair fall, hair breakage, hair thinning, miniaturization of hairs ; diseases of the scalp and treat according to cause.
An interest in hair loss and hair care originated around 1860 in a London barbershop under a certain Professor Wheeler. Later in 1902, this interest in hair disorders became known as Trichology and the Institute of Trichologists was founded.
Educational and governing bodies
The Institute of Trichologists
The Institute of Trichologists at over 100 years old is the oldest professional association for trichologists in the world. Registered members of The Institute of Trichologists indicate this with the postnominal letters AIT, MIT or FIT after their names (designating, respectively, an Associate Member, Member or Fellow of the Institute).
The International Association of Trichologists
The International Association of Trichologists (IAT), a non-profit Californian corporation, offers a course developed at the University of Southern California in 1974, and trains most students from several countries. It offers special condensed courses for medical doctors. Clinical training is offered in Australia, the U.K., America, Brazil, India and Russia. The Board of Directors has representatives from America, Russia, India, Brazil, the U.K. and Australia.
An IAT International Conference is held annually. The conference in 2012 was held in Brazil, the conference in November 2013 was held in Argentina, and the 2014 conference will be in Australia. Conferences next year will include one in Washington D.C., USA in July 2015 and in Sao Paulo, Brazil in July 2015.
The I.A.T. offers a Hair Practitioner's Certificate Course aimed at practitioners who desire more knowledge about hair but do not want to become fully qualified trichologists.
Registered members of the IAT can use the letters "IAT" after their name. Members are controlled by a code of ethics.