Women’s Hair Loss – Why Do Women Lose Their Hair?
Let’s talk about female hair loss.
It can be a touchy subject, but with at least one in three women experiencing some sort of hair loss in their life time, it’s more common than you think. Unfortunately it’s often less talked about and less socially acceptable than male hair loss and can cause embarrassment, impacting on everyday life.
Although it’s normal to lose a certain amount of hairs per day (anywhere from 50 to 150 depending on thickness/hair cycle etc), there is a point where you start to wonder if you should be worried and what exactly is going on?
Here are some common reasons women experience hair loss.
Androgenetic Alopecia or Female Pattern Hair Loss (FPHL) is the most common reason for hair loss in women.
Pre-determined by genetics, FPHL appears as a gradual thinning, starting at the top and parting, usually during/after menopause. This can be due to the reduced production of the hormones oestrogen and progesterone.
The growing phase of the hair shortens ( called Anogen) and time between shedding a hair and growing a new one lengthens.
This type of hair loss can be quite alarming if unheard of before.
It appears suddenly as random round bald patches on the scalp and can occur in male or female at any age.
Alopecia Areata can be a result of an autoimmune condition which makes the body recognize its own hair follicles as foreign and attacks them.
People with Alopecia Areata may see their hair grow back, however this can be an ongoing reoccurring condition.
Stress affects your body in a huge way, this applies to your hair too.
Your body can sometimes halt hair growth in extremely stressful/traumatic times, resulting in a lot of hairs getting pushed out at once when your body restarts the growing phase.
This type of hair loss is again noticeable around the top of the head/temples and is usually temporary.
This is called Traction Alopecia and is usually seen as progressive thinning/breaking around the hairline.
Hairstyles such as high pony tails, ballerina buns or tight braids can put so much strain on the hair follicles, that may cause damage beyond repair.
Avoid wearing one hairstyle too long and try not to pull hair too tightly.
This type of hair loss takes a lot of new mothers by surprise.
During pregnancy the hairs normal growth cycle is affected. The hair stays in the growth cycle, gaining much more hair without shedding as much as normal due
to surges of hormones.
Once hormone levels go back to normal (can be about 4 months after birth) the hair resumes its normal growth cycle and all the added volume from pregnancy starts to shed. This can be major or minor hair fall but is usually temporary.
Thickening products can help the transition at this time.
Some medications can cause hair loss or thinning. In particular medications for high blood pressure, arthritis, cancer and depression can see a sudden onset of hair fall. Consult your doctor if hair loss becomes chronic.
A sudden change of diet can stress the body and cause hair fall. If you are not getting the nutrition you need it can show in your hair. Deficiencies in iron, zinc, B-12/B-3 and protein have been linked to hair loss.
A sudden dramatic weight loss can also affect your hair (among other things) as your body goes into shock.
If you are experiencing some form of hair loss it is important to know you are not alone.
Through a one on one consultation, we can advise you the best steps to take, whether it be products to fight hair loss or some simple styling tricks to disguise it.