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FEMALE PATTERN BALDNESS Causes & solutions

FEMALE PATTERN BALDNESS: EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW

Before we try to understand baldness in women, it is important to understand how common hair fall can be. Healthy women, with a head full of hair, on an average lose about 50-100 strands of hair daily. If you notice more strands of hair than this, or if you feel like your fallen hair isn’t being replaced by newly grown hair, this might be a cause of concern. Another symptom to watch out for, is if your hair suddenly turns extremely thin or fine. This process called miniaturization may turn into a problem with time. If you notice a thinning ponytail or an expanding part line, then you should immediately consult a doctor to understand what kind of treatment you need.

WHAT IS FEMALE PATTERN BALDNESS?

Hair loss, also known as alopecia or baldness, refers to loss of hair from a part of the head or body. Typically, the head is involved at the least. Female Pattern Hair Loss (FPHL) is the most common form of alopecia in women. Early diagnosis and treatment are most advisable. As it is more efficient than progressively losing hair and then stimulating regrowth. In most cases, the diagnosis of the patient can occur by simply understanding their medical history or with complete physical examination. In rare cases however, a scalp biopsy is advisable for diagnosis.

Women's hair loss can begin at any age, in their twenties or during the post-menopausal age i.e., 40s, 50s, or 60s. No matter what the age, it is best to recognize the signs early and opt for treatment. However, to understand the treatment, it’s important to pinpoint the cause of the problem first.

Hair loss develops gradually and may start with patchy baldness that eventually spreads all over. And although most of us think that hair loss is common only among men, the reality is that women face hair loss just as much. In fact, less than 45% of women go through life with a full head of hair.

WHAT CAUSES FEMALE PATTERN BALDNESS?

Hair loss, also known as alopecia or baldness, refers to loss of hair from a part of the head or body. Typically, the head is involved at the least. Female Pattern Hair Loss (FPHL) is the most common form of alopecia in women. Early diagnosis and treatment are most advisable. As it is more efficient than progressively losing hair and then stimulating regrowth. In most cases, the diagnosis of the patient can occur by simply understanding their medical history or with complete physical examination. In rare cases however, a scalp biopsy is advisable for diagnosis.
Hair loss develops gradually and may start with patchy baldness that eventually spreads all over. And although most of us think that hair loss is common only among men, the reality is that women face hair loss just as much. In fact, less than 45% of women go through life with a full head of hair.
Women's hair loss can begin at any age, in their twenties or during the post-menopausal age i.e., 40s, 50s, or 60s. No matter what the age, it is best to recognize the signs early and opt for treatment. However, to understand the treatment, it’s important to pinpoint the cause of the problem first.

WHILE THE CAUSES CAN VARY FOR EVERY WOMAN, THERE ARE A FEW COMMON ONES

HORMONAL CHANGE

Hormonal changes are the most common cause of hair loss in women, leading to hair loss in the pattern. After contraception or discontinuation of birth control pills, many women experience hair loss in various levels. Mostly however, this is temporary.

When a woman is pregnant, and hormonal changes occur, more hair follicles enter the growth phase than usual. About two to three months after the birth of the baby, the normal hair cycle returns and most of the hair goes back into the old resting phase, thus causing excessive shedding. When this happens, the woman will start shedding more hair than usual. Because of this, she often notices a large amount of hair in her hairbrush or shower. This is usually a temporary condition, and as hormone levels return to normalcy, hair regrowth can be achieved in about six months post pregnancy. However, it is difficult to determine if the hair volume will be same as that before pregnancy. In case the hair regrowth doesn’t occur by this time, the hair loss may be permanent.

MEDICAL ISSUE

Hair loss can occur due to certain medical issues or illnesses that your body may be dealing with. There are a range of illnesses than can cause it, including, polycystic ovaries, thyroid disease, insulin resistance, lupus, anemia, and malnutrition. In a lot of cases, even the side effects of certain medications commonly prescribed for blood pressure, mood disorders, thyroid problems, among others, can cause female pattern baldness.

LIFE STRESSOR

Women who experience hair loss often have psychological stress. Since women's hair loss is often a chronic progressive condition, early diagnosis and treatment are important. Other life stressors like illness and injury, can also cause hair to stop growing, about two to three months post the event. During this time, the root dies and falls off. However, if the stressor is avoided for long, the hair is generally replaced.

GENES

In a lot of cases, hereditary causes female pattern baldness. As it runs in the family, a lot of women lose hair with age or have thicker hair than the others. The heredity of the mother, father, or both can contribute to this. In some cases, it may be temporary due to hormonal changes or suppression, but in other cases it may persist for a long time, as in the case of hereditary issues.


As mentioned earlier, to restore your hair successfully, it is important to first understand why hair loss occurs. Which is why, I encourage women to consult a dermatologist or trichologist for an accurate examination and timely diagnosis. Once the underlying illness has been removed, in many cases, hair restoration is nearly possible. Treatments include – oral supplements, application of minoxidil over the scalp and finasteride when the hair fall is post-menopausal. Platelet rich plasma (PRP) is the one of the best treatments which is being offered for hair restoration nowadays. In this treatment, the blood taken from the patient’s own body is centrifuged and the rich plasma that is obtained is injected into the scalp.

While these treatments try and help patients recover from permanent hair loss, it is important to ensure that your hair is healthy, and you are hair fall-free even as a preventative measure. Which is why, choosing the right products for your hair with the right ingredients is critical. I often suggest using products with pro-vitamin as they help strengthen the hair from the roots to the tips. Pantene’s Hair Fall Control range is something I recommend to most. As it is packed with the right ingredients to ensure that your hair stays deeply nourished and doesn’t thin or fall.

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