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Hair is an integral part of our identity; we express ourselves through fashion and style choices. When you lose your hair, you may feel like you’re losing control over your appearance, and even your self-esteem can suffer as a result. Suppose you’re experiencing noticeable thinning or excessive shedding in the shower or on your pillowcase. In that case, there are several different ways to combat this problem before resorting to more drastic measures such as medication or surgery. Our hair defines us as human beings, so losing that part of ourselves can make us feel less like our true selves.
Signs of hair loss in women:
As in men, hair loss in women is a gradual process. It may take years before you notice the thinning of your hair. Women generally seem to experience less dramatic symptoms than men. They are also more likely to have a receding hairline rather than total baldness.
Thinning on the scalp:
The most common sign of hair loss is thinning on the scalp. This may seem insignificant at first, but without treatment, it can develop into a bald patch. Hair loss affects women differently than men. Very rarely will you see a woman with complete baldness. They usually have thinning across the top of their head. This type affects approximately 50% of women with thinning on the top (crown) and front area of their head. It may gradually progress to complete baldness in some cases, but this takes many years to develop. While there is no cure for Thinning Hair, treatments will help slow down the process.
One of the most alarming symptoms is a bald spot or patches of missing hair. Hereditary factors do not usually cause this. It triggers by illness, stress, an accident, or even childbirth. Iron deficiency, thyroid problems, and other medical conditions may also cause hair loss.
Hair in clumps: Hair loss does not come from the root but rather as individual strands of hair that you find on your pillowcase or in your hairbrush after combing. It is the most difficult symptom to diagnose because it comes and goes and can seem “random.”
In some cases, symptoms include:
Severe dandruff or scalp itching
Rapid weight loss.
Fatigue and pain behind the eyes.
Types of hair loss in women:
Androgenic Alopecia: This is the most common type of hair loss in women. It affects women more than men—most women with androgenic alopecia experience thinning or partial loss. Androgenic alopecia can develop at any age after puberty. It is also called “Female pattern hair loss,” a common cause of hair thinning in women. Typically, it will first become apparent over the top or sides of your front scalp before progressing to behind your ears and then around the back of your head.
Telogen effluvium: The hair loss that follows childbirth is known as Telogen effluvium. It is a condition that usually occurs two or three months after delivery. Sudden weight gain during pregnancy may also cause temporary hair loss for some women, while it does not affect others.
Anagen Effluvium: If you experience sudden hair loss following the use of certain drugs or because of a medical condition, you should consult your doctor immediately to avoid further complications. Anagen effluvium is a rare form of rapid-onset temporary alopecia and can affect up to 50% of those suffering from this complication. The most common curable causes are:
- Drug side effects (especially chemotherapy).
- Infections (such as typhus, flu, and hepatitis).
- Medical disorders (such as thyroid dysfunction).
- Nutritional deficiencies (such as iron deficiency anemia).
- Hormonal imbalances (such as hypothyroidism or adrenal gland disorders).
Hair loss in women due to hormonal imbalance:
Hormonal hair loss in women may be due to polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS). Hair loss is when there are excessive testosterone, androgen, and insulin levels. Ovarian cysts can also cause hormonal hair loss. Hair loss is a common symptom of hypothyroidism when the thyroid gland does not produce enough hormones. Other hormonal conditions that may be associated with hair loss include Cushing syndrome and hyperparathyroidism.
Hair loss due to nutritional deficiencies:
A lack of protein, iron, or vitamin B can cause your scalp and hair to lose its lustre as it becomes thinner and weaker in texture. Iron deficiency anemia causes fine, lifeless hair, while a severe vitamin B12 deficiency results in total baldness. Protein deficiencies result in dry, brittle, and thin hair, whereas insufficient vitamin A or E levels make your scalp itchy due to dandruff.
Plucking, hair weaving, and tight braids:
Regular plucking of individual hairs can lead to bald spots on your scalp. The same goes for hair extensions placed too tightly at the base of your scalp because constant rubbing results in inflammation and irritation. Tight braids also pull out natural hair, so using a loose weave instead.
Postpartum hair loss:
It is a very common side effect during pregnancy and after delivery. Circumstances vary from one woman to another, but hair loss is common in every single case. The reason for this type of hair fall lies in the changes that occur in your body as you get pregnant. During pregnancy, the body produces certain hormones known as progesterone and estrogen, leading to increased shedding of dead cells from your scalp. This process contributes significantly towards the normal growth of your baby inside the womb. Due to a lack of oxytocin, these hormones are not produced. It leads to extreme hair fall in women.
Menopause and hair loss:
Menopause, which is the permanent cessation of menstruation in women, occurs around age 51 on average. It often coincides with a decrease in fertility and an increase in the frequency of symptoms such as hot flashes and vaginal dryness. However, it is also accompanied by other symptoms, including hair loss. The process of menopause for most women is gradual, but for some, it can occur suddenly due to surgical removal or destruction of the ovaries by chemotherapy treatments. Some part of this drastic change during menopause likely results from the drop in estrogen levels that has been linked to increased hair shedding and thinning. Estrogen regulates the female pattern hair growth cycle. Adequate levels of estrogen keep your hair healthy and help prevent shedding or thinning. When you reach menopause, the ovaries stop producing estrogen, which causes the number to fall.
Medical Conditions that cause hair loss in women:
- Iron Deficiency Anemia: This is where the body lacks enough iron that prevents hair growth. In this condition also it may lead to infertility in women.
- Hyperthyroidism: This disorder sometimes leads to excessive hair fall because of thinning of scalp hair & baldness can occur. It is a thyroid gland-related disorder; if left untreated, you can face loss of vision along with much more severe conditions like heart disease and diabetes.
- Alopecia areata: An autoimmune disease that results from an overactive immune response towards your hair follicles. If left untreated can result in permanent hair loss, especially on the scalp.
- Cushing’s disease: This is also a severe medical condition caused when your body produces a high amount of cortisol due to which hair fall occurs. This disease can lead to several other conditions like depression, obesity, and diabetes.
- Polycystic Ovarian Disease: This is also another condition where hair fall, there may be irregular periods or weight gain or loss, which are very common among women suffering from it, but you should never ignore this disorder as it can also lead to more severe issues. If not treated properly will cause infertility too.
- Hepatitis: It’s a liver disorder caused due to viral infection. If left untreated, it may result in severe problems to your body like nausea, weakness, etc.; again, hair loss is an early symptom of this disease called Alopecia Areata.
- Diabetes: This disorder is also due to hormonal imbalance. Excessive blood sugar tests can help diagnose this problem, which needs proper control through diet control and medicines that will make the body normal again before you start thinking of starting a family. So maintain your health first before planning your pregnancy schedule.
This explains why women face hair fall more often than men, although according to new studies, it’s said that the chances of baldness for an average female are 40% compared with a 20% possibility for males.
Hair loss treatment in women:
- Minoxidil: It is an over-the-counter (OTC) ) topical medication indicated in the management of androgenetic alopecia. It is the most widely used hair loss treatment prescribed by dermatologists for women. Minoxidil can be used to treat all degrees of hair thinning, from barely perceptible thinning to extensive areas of bald scalp. It works temporarily by widening blood vessels under the skin, enabling better nourishment for your remaining follicles and encouraging their survival. Minoxidil must be applied directly to the affected area once daily for several months before you will see results.
- Hormone replacement therapy: Hormone therapy for female pattern hair loss (FPHL) is a treatment that combines estrogen and progestin, either synthetic or a natural progesterone derivative. The latter may also be prescribed as an oral medication called micronized progesterone (Prometrium®). Hormone replacement can be taken orally or applied topically.
- Birth Control pills for hair growth in women: The latest developments in hair loss medication for women are focused on the hormone dihydrotestosterone (DHT), which is known to be involved in baldness. The basis of treatment is that estrogen reduces DHT levels, while progestin opposes its effects on scalp follicles. A newer approach is based on evidence that oral birth control pills protect against androgenetic alopecia (AGA) or male/female pattern hair loss.
- PRP: Also known as plasma-rich platelet therapy, platelet-rich plasma (PRP) has come out of the hair transplant community. It involves injections of one’s blood to stimulate the hair follicles and lessen the signs of aging on the face or hair loss in women. The injected blood causes your body to make more follicles and helps existing follicles function better. This technique is still experimental, but early results show it can help with thinning or balding areas.
- LLLT: Low-level laser light therapy (LLLT) has shown to be effective in causing hair growth in both men and women. This treatment method is primarily used on the scalp area of females, pattern baldness, and thinning hair caused by dihydrotestosterone or DHT. LLLT uses a low-level light beam that penetrates the scalp skin cells while leaving the upper layers of your skin unharmed. Hair production begins almost immediately after treatment and lasts for months after each session.
- Wigs: A hairpiece that completely covers the scalp is the most common solution for women who have lost significant amounts of hair. Hairpieces are available in a wide range of styles and prices. The cost depends on the quality, length, and quantity of hair needed to make it. Many people wear their natural hair with a wig cap attached to take their real hair out when they wash or style it.
How to prevent hair fall:
- Don’t eat junk food; stick to a balanced diet, including fruits and vegetables.
- Eat enough roughage; one of the best sources of good hair is fenugreek leaves. Fenugreek has been used in India for years as a natural remedy for treating hair-related issues such as baldness and thinning hair.
- Include foods with high amounts of protein in your diet. Eggs, milk, and fish are excellent sources of protein that can help hair growth and prevent breakage from occurring. It also goes for taking vitamins which have a lot to do with healthy hair.
- Avoid stress because it is very likely that you will start losing more hair if you are under a lot of stress.
- Always drink enough water as it is essential for many functions within the body, and hair will also get hydrated. Also, do not wash your hair every day as frequent washing can cause dryness to develop, leading to hair breakage. Instead, apply some natural conditioner or olive oil to your hair and leave it overnight before washing in the morning.
- Try not to straighten or blow dry as often as possible because this can cause more damage than good. Instead, let your hair air dry naturally and use a towel to absorb excess water if you wish so.
- Don’t use heat-styling tools such as curling irons, flat irons, or blow dryers to damage the hair’s structure. Instead, use a natural oil like olive oil as it has many benefits and won’t harm your hair too much if you overuse it.
- When doing your hair, use a minimal number of products because certain products may contain chemicals harmful to your hair. If you need to use products, always look for organic and natural products that will be safe for your hair.
- Avoid using expensive shampoos since they do not work any better than a regular shampoo anyway. Many expensive brands contain “bad chemicals,” which can even harm or break your hair. Stick to using everyday shampoo and natural ingredients like lemon juice, apple cider vinegar, or aloe vera gel to maintain healthy hair.
- Cut your hair from time to time if it is long because this will make your hair look fuller and healthier.
Diagnostic procedure for hair loss in women:
- Hair Pull test: This is used to determine the severity of hair loss. It involves gently pulling 10 to 15 terminal hairs on the frontal scalp without applying any pressure on the follicle. The quantity of hair lost determines the severity of hair loss. Minimal hair fall would be less than ten; mild 10-25, moderate 25-50, and severe 50 or more.
- Skin Biopsy: A dermatologist takes a small piece of skin from the scalp to examine the cellular structure and architecture of the hair follicles under a high magnification microscope. The findings are used to determine the cause of hair loss. Scalp biopsy is not indicated in benign conditions, and a hair pull test may be sufficient.
- Blood tests for iron deficiencies and other nutritional deficiencies: Iron, B12, Vitamin D, Biotin, Folic acid, Calcium, etc. Hair growth depends on sufficient nutrients from food; a deficiency in certain vital nutrients can lead to abnormal hair growth or hair loss. It is important to investigate all the possible root causes.
- Prolactin Test: Prolactin is a hormone that promotes breast milk production in lactating women. It is also responsible for healthy hair growth during pregnancy and after childbirth. An elevated prolactin level may lead to hair fall or abnormal hair loss in post-menopausal females.
- Thyroid Profile: An underactive or overactive thyroid gland is one of the most common causes of hair loss. It increases androgen level, which makes the hair follicle miniaturize and eventually fall off.
- Trichogram: A follicular biopsy test that detects subclinical abnormalities in the microscopic appearance of scalp hair. The presence of anagen effluvium, telogen effluvium, androgenetic alopecia can all be seen.
Homeopathic treatment for hair loss:
The Homeopathic treatment for hair loss has proven to be effective in treating the problem. Homeopathy treatments are customized for every individual who may need Homeopathic medicines for hair loss. Homeopathic treatment is effective for treating hair loss because Homeopathy treats all kinds of diseases and always concentrates on the root cause of the disease or condition. Homeopathy has a holistic approach to the treatment of hair loss. Homeopathic medicines work on balancing the overall health & well-being of your body to promote healthy hair growth. Homeopathy is effective for treating hair loss. Homeopathic remedies are safe, natural and non-toxic as it uses plant-based ingredients and is free from side effects. Homeopathy has been used for various women’s problems very successfully. Treatment with Homeopathic remedies helps patients overcome their illness and avoid surgery and other expensive procedures. Homeopathy is used to treat many symptoms of gynecological issues as well. You can book an appointment today through OHO Homeopathy!