As a result of the societal stigma attached to the possession of back hairs, most people have felt really uncomfortable with this feature in their body and will do all they can to ensure that they keep their backs away from public glare except when shaven.
The negative societal response of most people coupled with the weird feeling that one has when he has back hairs, have given rise to questions and debates as to its normalcy or otherwise of the trait. Few people, upon coming to the reality of having this body feature, tend to get depressed, feeling something is wrong with them. This is why we shall, in this article, examine the phenomenon of having back hairs as well as its normalcy or otherwise in the human body.
In examining the origin of back hairs, it has been argued, in some quarters, that the possession of back hairs could be traceable to man’s earlier years, before the invention of traditional clothing. Back hairs were part of human features which were necessary to keep man warm protect him from cold weathers.
However, as man evolved and developed more traditional clothing methods, his body began to react to this, hence, the reduction or the complete annihilation of hairs from his back. Nevertheless, it is man’s natural feature to have a sizable amount of hair on his back.
Read also: How Common is Back Hair on Men & Women?
That one grows back hairs should, therefore, not be a source of worry as it is peculiar to humans to have this feature. To have too little or no hair on one’s back, on the other hand, should also not be something to worry about as that only goes to show the adaptability of the human body to the modern means of dressing.
A prominent and indispensable factor to consider when examining the feature of back hairs in humans is Genetics: the possibility of inheriting specific traits from one’s parents. Human features such as height, colour and even temperaments, could be transferred from parents to offspring. Same goes with the possession of hair on one’s back or otherwise. Some parents who have this trait tend to pass it on to their offspring, which also can spread it on from generations to generations.
In further examining whether or not back hairs are normal, a key point to note is the hormonal factor in man. Hair growth in every man and woman are normally caused by a certain hormone called Androgens. Androgens, among the functions they serve in human body, are responsible for the development of every boy and girl at puberty. They are responsible for stimulating the features of puberty such as the growth of facial, body and pubic hairs.
Now, these Androgens are responsible for the growth of hairs in specific areas of the body in which they are highly sensitive. Androgens affect the growth of hair (in parts of the body where they are sensitive) by their activities on the hair follicles as well as the response of the hair follicles to them.
The hair follicles have receptors containing small amounts of proteins in them. By these receptors, they are sensitive to the influence of Androgens and they end up producing hairs. This reality accounts for why some persons tend to be more hairy than others.
The reason why specific parts of the body tend to produce more hair than the others owe to the sensitivities of Androgens. These hormones, depending on the slight differences in human bodies, tend to be sensitive in parts of the bodies such as the chest (for men), pubic areas, parts of the face, etc. They are also responsible for producing back hairs in the people who have them.
It all depends on how much Androgen-sensitive their backs are. Given this, it becomes pellucid that the possession of back hairs is completely natural and shouldn’t be something to regret. On the contrary, it can be said to be a pointer to the normal functioning of one’s androgen hormones.
Back Hair Growth in Male and Female
The tendency to grow Back hair may differ slightly in both sexes. This owes to the hormonal differences of the two sexes on a normal scale. The male sex hormone, testosterone, is usually responsible for the growth of hair in most parts of the body.
Now, although testosterone is conventionally considered a male sex hormone, women, normally, do produce small amounts of it in their ovaries and adrenal glands. The male sex hormone, testosterone, together with the female sex hormone, estrogen, helps in the growth and maintenance of the female reproductive tissues and bone mass.
Although, testosterone is expected to be present only in small measures in the female, it is not always so. In some females, the male sex hormone could be produced a little bit over the expected levels. The consequence of this is the possibility of growing hairs in unwanted places coupled with a few other effects in appearance or behavior.
Excess testosterone in the female could be responsible for a high tendency of producing hair in unwanted places. Nevertheless, it has also been medically established that back hair on females is, in most cases, not the result of excess male sex hormones. It is also normal for females to grow back hairs. However, excess testosterone levels can heighten it. In response to testosterone, the typical male tends to grow hair in more places than the female. These male body hairs tend to grow with age.
Researches have proven that a great number of human population in several societies possess hairs on their backs. Although, it may not be of common sight to see people bare their backs when they have hairs on them. This primarily owes to the societal stigmatization of this body feature. Also, most people are constantly and desperately getting rid of the hairs on their backs because of the popular general views that it is not “sexy” to have them.
Another interesting reason why most people tend to remove their back hairs is the feeling of discomfort it tends to produce. Particularly, people in the tropics, tend to find it more uncomfortable due to heat. Back hairs may serve as an impediment to the free flow of air to one’s backs. People, therefore find it inconvenient to keep their back hair to make room for a little bit more flow of fresh air to their bare skins.