FEMALE HAIR LOSS: NOT A TABOO!
Let’s talk about female hair loss!
It is fair to say that hair is important for women maybe more than men. It is important that hair loss in women is more widely discussed and accepted as a condition in our societies today.
Female pattern hair loss (FPHL or the medical term alopecia) is the extreme thinning of hair and/or the development of bald spots experienced by approximately two-thirds of postmenopausal women. Given the importance of hair as a social and beauty norm, hair loss can undermine self-esteem, and even cause or contribute to anxiety, emotional distress. The good news is that there are protocols and treatments to mitigate its negative impact.
Is hair loss in women common?
It is normal to lose 50-100 hairs per day and they tend to grow back. However, extreme hair loss is something else and can really affect a person emotionally.
As said, hair loss is not an issue only affecting men. As a matter of fact, it is estimated that more than 50% of women will experience noticeable hair loss in their lifetime. So yes, this is not a rarity and it is a widespread condition globally.
Who is affected by hair loss in women?
Hair loss touches millions of women and usually affects:
- Women above 40 years old;
- Women who just gave birth;
- Women who have undergone chemotherapy and those who have taken other type of medications;
- Women who regularly have hairstyles that pull on the hair or use harsh chemicals on their hair.
This being said, it could affect women of any age.
What causes hair loss in women?
There are several reasons but the most common ones are:
- Family history (heredity): Causes thinning of hair along the top of the head. This type of hair loss is called female-pattern hair loss (FPHL) or androgenetic alopecia or androgenic alopecia.) This type often worsen when estrogen is lost during menopause.
- Hair style: Heavy hair loss can happen when hair is styled in ways that pull on roots. This type of hair loss is called traction alopecia. This affect a lot of women even younger ones and if the hair follicles are damaged, then the loss can be permanent.
- Extreme stress or shock : Such event could lead to temporary hair loss. This type of hair loss is called telogen effluvium. It happens to hair in the resting stage.
- Chemical or Toxic substances, including chemotherapy, radiation therapy, and some medications: Such exposure can lead to hair loss. This type of hair loss is called anagen effluvium. This happens to hair in the growth stage. Potentially, it can be permanent if the hair follicles are damaged.
- Other medical conditions:
Alopecia areata is an autoimmune disease that can cause patchy hair loss on the head and on the body. This condition is usually temporary.
Hair loss in women & menopause
In reality, it is normal to lose more hair with the passing of time. Though, not many women understand the correlation between menopause and hair loss.
The aging process could mean that some women will experience androgenetic alopecia (or androgenic alopecia). This type of hair loss may worsen due to hormonal changes. During and after menopause, hair might become thinner as hair follicles start to shrink. Consequently, Hair grows less rapidly and falls out more easily. Female Pattern Hair Loss is often characterized by thinning hair concentrated at the crown and on top of the head.
Consequently, one cause may be the changing levels of hormones during menopause. During this phase, estrogen and progesterone levels tend to fall whereas the androgens, male hormones, are increased. Please note that other factors such as stress, diet or heredity, may contribute to hair loss.
What are the symptoms or signs for hair loss?
- Noticing more hair fall out daily;
- Seeing noticeable patches of thinner or missing hair,
- Seeing that the part on the top of your head gets wider
- Experiencing that hair break off more easily
Finally, female hair loss affects millions of women worldwide and it can be distressing. Therefore, it shouldn’t be a taboo or something to be ashamed of. Furthermore, there are treatments that can help.
If you are noticing heavy hair loss and if you need help with this condition, we invite you to book a Free Consultation at NAR LONDON in Harley Street.