One of the most common problems for women is very seldom talked about. To find out that you are losing your hair can be an unnerving experience for both men and women. It is important that the problem of female hairloss is talked about and women are aware of the causes of female hairloss and thinning and the treatments that are available.
More than 30% of all women experience hairloss to some degree. Ninety five per cent of hairloss complaints seen in women are caused by two conditions: increased hair shedding (telogen effluvium) and genetic hairloss (androgen-dependent alopecia).
In this situation, the inherited tendency towards hairloss is activated by a change in hormonal balance within the scalp and hair follicle (the precise mechanism is as yet unknown).
Up to 30% of Caucasian women are affected and the principle features of the condition are:
Increased hair shedding
Reduced hair volume
Decrease in hair fibre diameter
Decrease in hair density
Widening of the partings.
If treatment is justified, 4% and 5% Minoxidil or Surgical techniques can be used as in males.
Research has shown that a large proportion of women with hairloss had low ferritin(iron) levels compared with women without hairloss. The main reason for this is due to blood loss during menstruation, which is just enough to cause a gradual depletion of iron stores, but it is only recently that this is recognised as a contributory factor in increased hair shedding.
Treatment includes Florisene®
Hormone Replacement Therapy
Some types of HRT induce hair changes similar to those seen in genetic hairloss, although some hair benefits can occur from HRT due to oestrogen levels being restored.
Thyroid imbalances can produce significant changes in hair growth and hair quality. In the UK approximately 2% of women and 0.1% of men are affected. Only a blood test can diagnose this condition.
It is well established that following childbirth 50% of women experience postnatal hairloss and this usually regrows without intervention. In those few women where it does not, other reasons are found.
Other causes of Hairloss
Physical damage can result in hair losing moisture for a number of reasons. The loss of moisture results in hair becoming dry, brittle and prone to breakage. Excessive heat, chemical processing, scalp problems and sunbathing are just some of the factors that can cause damage.
A few simple rules: -
Have any chemical process carried out by a recommended hairdresser
Never brush wet hair;
use a wide toothed comb
Always use an appropriate shampoo and conditioner
Try to avoid excessive heat, hold hairdryer at least six inches from hair
Avoid tongs, straighteners and heated rollers
Keep hairsprays to a minimum, they are very drying
Have hair trimmed regularly, particularly if long
Listen to your hairdresser, if he advises you against processing, then wait.
There are many treatments available depending on your specific condition, which might need further investigation, they might include - Minoxidil or Vitamin supplements or a change of your current medication
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