Frequently overlooked, hair loss in women can be deeply distressing. After all, hair is considered part of women’s looks and having a full head of hair is considered attractive as well. However, up to one-third of women will experience some form of hair loss at some point in their lives, and this can increase to up to two-thirds of women after menopause. Women may experience thinning hair or bald spots. Skin and Scalp Restoration Clinic in Dayton can help women who are experiencing hair loss. Below, we’ll look at the common causes of hair loss in women and explore ways to treat it. Contact us today!
Hair Loss in Women
WHAT CAUSES HAIR LOSS IN WOMEN?
The same cause of male pattern baldness is the same for women’s hair loss. Known as androgenetic alopecia, or female (or male) pattern hair loss, this affects men and women differently. In men, we see male pattern baldness occur as a receding hairline and hair loss at the top of the head. In women, hair loss usually begins where women’s hair parts and bald spots may appear. However, women rarely experience a receding hairline or go completely bald like men. Some common causes of hair loss include:
- Medical conditions, such as alopecia areata
- Medications, such as chemotherapy, radiation, and others
- Stress in life, either physical or emotional
- Family history (hereditary).
- Hair styles, particularly braids or cornrows
- Diet, or vitamin deficiencies
There are three different degrees of hair loss in women:
- Type I hair loss is characterized by a very light thinning of the hair that frequently can be camouflaged with hair styling techniques.
- Type II hair loss is characterized by a decreased volume of the hair and the part on top of the head has usually widened.
- Type III hair loss is a much larger degree of thinning hair where the scalp is noticeably visible.
As the clinical name of hair loss implies (androgenetic alopecia), hair loss is influenced by the hormones androgens. More understood in men, androgens are responsible for the male sex drive as well as the regulation of hair growth. Another hormonal condition involving the endocrine system may contribute to hair loss as well.
Genetics play a role as well since hair loss can be caused by the shortening of the hair loss cycle, causing hair to take longer than normal to grow back after it’s shed. As we age, the hair follicle also shrinks, causing shorter, thinner hair. As we age, the production of the female hormones, estrogen and progesterone decrease, causing a prevalence of the male hormones.
HAIR LOSS TREATMENTS FOR WOMEN
Medications are the most often go-to to combat hair loss in women. Some common ones include:
- Minoxidil (better known as Rogaine). This FDA-approved drug, originally designed to combat high blood pressure, has been shown to stimulate hair growth as a topical. Note that this is not a quick fix. It takes time for Rogaine to work just like it takes time for your hair to grow. Plan to use this for at least four months and sometimes longer. And be aware that as soon as you stop using Rogaine, you’ll start to lose hair again. Thus, this can be an expensive, life-long fix.
- Anti-androgen. These drugs are meant to combat the androgens that are contributing to hair loss for women. These are prescription drugs prescribed by your doctor and are for women who are not looking to become pregnant, as one side effect is genital abnormalities in male fetuses.
- Iron supplements. A lack of iron can contribute to hair loss in women. It is recommended to perform a blood test to check your iron levels as taking excess iron can cause stomach upset and constipation.
- Hair transplants. Hair transplants have come a long way since they were first introduced in the 1950s. Most hair transplants these days use follicular unit transplantation, which results in a more normal hair growth pattern. Essentially in this invasive cosmetic procedure, a surgeon will remove a small strip of your scalp and then divide this piece into hundreds of small grafts with just a few hairs each. Each skin graft is then implanted on the hair loss spots on your scalp. Hair transplants can be painful and involve an extensive recovery time.
- Scalp micropigmentation. Offered by Skin and Scalp Restoration in Dayton, scalp micropigmentation is a non-invasive cosmetic procedure where pigment is deposited in your scalp that mimics the color of your hair, making it appear as if you have hair. With little downtime and minimal pain, scalp micropigmentation is growing in popularity as a way to conceal hair loss in a semi-permanent way.
Hair loss in women can be devastating. During scalp micropigmentation, Skin and Scalp Restoration Clinic in Dayton focuses on reducing the contrast between the hair and the bald scalp. Hair loss in women is usually seen as a thinning of the hair overall, which makes scalp micropigmentation an ideal solution for women. In essence, your professional technician will shade your scalp, making it much harder to see the difference in color from the hair and the scalp, making your hair appear much thicker.
You don’t have to wear a wig or feel ashamed because of hair loss due to female pattern hair loss, postpartum hair loss, or alopecia. Skin and Scalp Restoration Clinic in Dayton can help.