Hair loss in
women

Admit it — when you see or hear hair loss advertisements, it’s often about men losing their hair. Hair products like creams, shampoos, and supplements are all geared toward male pattern baldness. However, many do not realize that women also suffer from thinning hair.

Often, we associate male pattern baldness with aging or genetics. However, what causes hair loss for women can sometimes be hard to explain. At times, female baldness is a symptom of a more serious problem.

It is embarrassing to experience hair loss. That is why most women are quick to search for what causes their hair to fall. Usually, they may change their diets and consult their doctor immediately. Also, they often buy special shampoos to reverse the effects of their hair loss problem. However, when all solutions fail, they start to look for wigs.

The Hair Transplant Center – New Jersey offers solutions for women’s hair loss. We are conveniently located to serve the areas of Bergen County, Northern, Central, and South New Jersey.

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Suffering from hair loss?

There are quite a few reasons why your hair starts to fall. More often than not, there are ways to treat them. However, it is important to find a solution that works for your specific condition.

Here are some of the common causes of hair loss in women, in addition to tips on treating your thinning hair appropriately.

11 Potential Causes of Hair Loss in Women

With hair loss in women on the rise, many wonder what could be causing this. Usually, there are different causes of why women suffer from hair loss. Some can be cured or treated, while others cannot. However, it is important to figure out why and how to treat it, no matter which one you have.

01
Genetics – Androgenic Alopecia

The most common cause of hair loss for both men and women a like.......

02
Thyroid Conditions

The thyroid helps regulate how quickly your body uses energy.....

03
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)

PCOS is a common hormonal disorder that affects women during.....

04
Lupus

Lupus is a chronic autoimmune disease that.....

05
Iron-Deficient Anemia (IDA)

Iron-deficient anemia is a condition where you have low levels.....

06
Severe Stress or Anxiety Disorders

Experiencing chronic stress can sometimes manifest.....

07
Alopecia Areata

Alopecia areata is an autoimmune disease that.....

08
Mental Health Issues

Most of the time, mental health issues are......

09
Drug Treatments That Causes Hair Loss

Certain drug treatments can cause hair loss....

10
Infections

There are certain types of infections.....

11
Tinea Capitis

Also known as ringworm of the scalp, tinea.....

Genetics – Androgenic Alopecia

The most common cause of hair loss for both men and women alike is male pattern baldness (MPB). It’s caused by a combination of hormones, including testosterone, dihydrotestosterone (DHT), and genetics. Male pattern baldness is also known as androgenic alopecia. This condition simply refers to a hereditary predisposition for hair loss.

Many people do not recognize that female pattern baldness is as common as MPB. That’s because of the overwhelming hair loss ads for men. However, female pattern hair loss does not follow the same pattern.

For men, they experience thinning hair on their forehead. While women are prone to experience baldness at the top of their heads, usually, it covers half of their scalp.

Hair shedding is normal, but to what extent?

At first, most women do not notice excessive hair loss because it is customary to lose between 50 to 100 hair strands daily. Women’s hair falls out naturally when washed, brushed, or styled.

So, when any hair loss problems begin, women simply think they are shedding a bit more than usual. Probably, they notice excessive hair loss while showering or brushing their hair. You shouldn’t necessarily get alarmed right away because many things can cause excessive hair shedding (medically called telogen effluvium), like:

  • Illness
  • Stress
  • Giving Birth

Thus, excessive hair shedding only becomes noticeable when the scalp becomes more visible. If you notice something like this on your scalp, try some generic medications. There are many over-the-counter hair treatment solutions available, like:

  • Finasteride.
  • Topical minoxidil.

If you don’t see any positive results, consult a doctor. The New Jersey Hair Transplant doctor may recommend a hair transplant service based on your case.

Thyroid Conditions

The thyroid helps regulate how quickly your body uses energy and makes proteins. It also regulates the amount of oxygen that goes to all parts of your body. There are many different types of thyroid disease. However, they have one thing in common; they can all cause hair loss. Both hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism can cause hair loss in men and women. In addition, a thyroid problem can change the hair texture.

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)

PCOS is a common hormonal disorder that affects women during their reproductive years. PCOS causes an excess of androgen levels (male sex hormones) which can lead to hair loss. Women with PCOS may also experience:

  • Hair loss (male pattern baldness).
  • Excessive facial and body hair growth.
  • Acne.
  • Excessive weight gain.
  • Irregular periods.

Will my hair grow back?

Yes, but any hair loss due to PCOS will not go back on its own. However, with proper treatment, you may be able to stimulate hair regrowth on your scalp.

Lupus

Lupus is a chronic autoimmune disease that can affect many areas of the body, including:

  • Joints.
  • Skin.
  • Blood vessels.
  • Heart.
  • Lungs.

One of the most common symptoms of lupus is hair loss. Although, it is not uncommon for people with lupus to lose their hair completely. Thus, it occurs for a variety of reasons depending on what stage you are in. The most common form of this type of hair loss is called alopecia areata. Typically, lupus occurs on just one side or area on your scalp.

Iron-Deficient Anemia (IDA)

Iron-deficient anemia is a condition where you have low levels of iron in your blood. The medical term for this type of hair loss is telogen effluvium. It can cause:

  • Fatigue.
  • Pale skin.
  • Hair loss.
  • Brittle nails.
  • Shortness of breath.

IDA can cause hair loss due to increased shedding from the scalp. Aside from that, it also changes the hair color or texture. Excessive hair shedding can lead to bald patches.

Usually, IDA hair loss starts with a gradual onset of shedding. Then, it will eventually affect most scalp hairs. Most cases are due to an underlying chronic disease or other medical condition. However, it may also be triggered by trauma such as:

  • Surgery or injury.
  • Childbirth.
  • Excessive stress.
  • Hormonal changes during pregnancy or menopause.

Are you experiencing any of these symptoms?

Or, are you suspecting that you may suffer from this type of hair loss?

Contact your doctor as soon as possible!

Severe Stress or Anxiety Disorders

Experiencing chronic stress can sometimes manifest itself in physical ways. Commonly, we hear people with anxiety disorders experience weight gain or loss. Similarly, severe stress can cause hair loss. It creates an overproduction of cortisol, which can cause the hair follicle to shrink and produce thinner hairs.

Sometimes, the hair loss problem is very gradual. The person may not notice it at first. They won’t notice it until they have a lot of hair loss or until the hair begins to grow back, resulting in patches of very short hair.

Alopecia Areata

Alopecia areata is an autoimmune disease that causes hair loss. It is a type of disease where your immune system attacks the hair follicles on your scalp. Therefore, it can cause hair to fall out, often in clumps.

This condition can be temporary or last indefinitely. The most common cause of alopecia areata is stress.

Are you under a lot of pressure in life?

Then, you may want to consider ways to reduce this pressure as much as possible. There are many possible causes, including:

  • Genetics.
  • Stress.
  • Thyroid problems.
  • Viruses.
  • Autoimmune disorders.

Also, medical treatments might help with alopecia, like corticosteroid injections into the affected areas and immunosuppressants like cyclosporine.

Mental Health Issues

Most of the time, mental health issues are hard to discuss. However, it is important to know the symptoms. It’s not uncommon for people struggling with their mental health to experience hair loss and scalp problems. Many factors can cause hair loss, and trichotillomania is one of these.

What Is Trichotillomania?

Trichotillomania is a disorder in which the individual has an irresistible urge to pull out their hair. This can be problematic because as you continue to pull, you do not have any “normal” hairs left. Instead, it will leave you with bald patches all over your scalp and body.

Also, you may experience skin irritation from the constant pulling of hair follicles, which can lead to infection or other health problems such as:

  • Vein and blood vessel inflammation near the surface of the skin.
  • Eyelid swelling due to the increased pressure on these areas.

What Causes Trichotillomania?

In psychiatry literature, trichotillomania is classified under obsessive-compulsive disorders. However, it needs more research before this classification can be confirmed.

Furthermore, what causes this behavior is still unknown. Yet, it often begins in childhood and continues to develop through adulthood. This condition is also more likely to occur in women. But trichotillomania can also affect some men.

Based on research, the symptoms of trichotillomania are often seen in people with anxiety disorders. Thus, pulling hair is simply a form of stress relief for them.

Drug Treatments That Causes Hair Loss

Certain drug treatments can cause hair loss. If you want to keep your hair, it is important to know which ones will avoid this problem.

How Do Drugs Cause Hair Loss Problems?

Certain drugs can cause hair loss problems by interfering with the scalp’s hair growth cycle.

Normal cycle of scalp hair growth:

  • Anagen phase.
  • Telogen phase.

During the anagen phase, the hair starts to grow. This phase usually lasts for two to six years. While in the telogen phase, the hair rests. Usually, this phase lasts about three months. Furthermore, the hair also falls out at the end of the telogen phase. Thus, new hairs will replace fall-out hairs. During this period, medications can lead to two types of hair loss:

  • The anagen effluvium.
  • The telogen effluvium.

The Anagen Effluvium

The anagen effluvium is a type of hair loss that occurs during the anagen phase. Anagen effluvium prevents the matrix cells from normally dividing,  stopping them from producing new hairs when the hairs are actively growing.

Usually, this type of hair loss occurs within a few days of taking medication. This problem also occurs in people taking chemotherapy drugs for cancer. Sadly, the effect is often severe, which causes people to lose hair on their:

  • Head.
  • Eyebrows.
  • Eyelash.
  • Other body parts.

The Telogen Effluvium

The telogen effluvium is the most common form of hair loss caused by drug treatments. After taking the drug, the hair loss problem usually appears within two to four weeks. Telogen effluvium causes hair follicles to go into a resting phase, leading to hair falling out too early.

Usually, people who have a telogen effluvium shed more than normal. For instance, you are normally shedding 50 to 100 hairs a day. With telogen effluvium, your shedding can double or triple that amount.

What types of drug treatments cause hair loss?

There are many types of drugs thought to cause hair to fall-out, including:

  • Acne medications – retinoids.
  • Antibiotics drugs.
  • Anti-clotting drugs.
  • Anticonvulsants drugs.
  • Antifungal drugs.
  • Antidepressants.
  • Birth control pills.
  • Cholesterol-lowering drugs.
  • Cancer treatment drugs.
  • Antihypertensives medications like ACE inhibitors, beta-blockers, and diuretics.
  • Hormone replacement therapy.
  • Mood stabilizers.
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs).
  • Parkinson’s disease drugs.
  • Steroids.
  • Thyroid medications.
  • Weight loss drugs.

Most of the time, these medications result in mild to severe hair loss.

Infections

There are certain types of infections that can affect the skin as well as the scalp and hair. This may also be the cause of hair loss for some individuals.

Tinea Capitis

Also known as ringworm of the scalp, tinea capitis is a type of fungal infection that can result in severe itching and dramatic hair loss. There are cases where the hair loss caused by this infection may or may not grow back. However, this depends on the severity.

Medical Solutions for Hair
Loss in Women

There are many reasons why you can experience hair loss problems. Whether it is permanent, reversible, or temporary, there are options you can consider. Yet, before you do anything else, it is important to visit a doctor so that they can diagnose what causes your hair loss problem. Also, they can recommend the proper hair restoration treatment for your case. Here are some of the most common medications for hair loss

  • Minoxidil topical solution.
  • Finasteride.
  • Prescription spironolactone pills.
  • Topical tretinoin.
  • Corticosteroid injections.
  • Topical anthralin.
  • Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy.
  • Ketoconazole shampoo.
  • Light and laser therapy.
  • Hair transplant surgery.
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