In a society where long, thick hair is seen as a symbol of femininity, beauty and health, losing your hair can be disruptive and upsetting. However, around one-third of women globally experience hair loss at some point in their lives. This may come as a surprise to you as the issue receives far less attention than male hair loss in the media and popular culture.
For many women, hair loss can bring about feelings of shame, anxiety and depression. At Look Natural Hair Restoration we strive to be a part of the solution. We help women to achieve the hair that they desire so that they can go back to living their lives free of worry and stress.
So letís explore the causes of hair loss for women as well as the bespoke treatments that we recommend.
Causes of Hair Loss in Women
There is a wide range of causes for female hair loss. Letís explore these below:
Female Pattern Hair Loss: Also referred to as androgenic alopecia, female pattern hair loss is the most common cause of thinning hair and affects over 30 million women in America alone. This genetic condition is caused by testosterone, which is converted to DHT by the enzyme 5-alpha reductase. DHT binds to receptors on a hair follicle and gradually turns the follicle off. At first, the follicle produces finer and thinner hair until eventually, it stops growing hair entirely. Although women have much lower levels of testosterone than men, itís still enough to result in female pattern hair loss.
Telogen Effluvium: To fully understand this one we need some background. Hair follicles go through cycles; a growth phase (anagen), a resting phase (catogen) and a shedding phase (telogen). Significant stressors can result in hair follicles suddenly shifting from the anagen to the telogen phase, causing the hair to shed and thin. This is referred to as Telogen Effluvium. Stressors include childbirth, surgery, illness and stress. This can be a temporary disorder but it can also result in permanent hair loss, even if the inciting event is resolved.
Hormonal causes: Hormones can also be responsible for temporary hair loss. During pregnancy, an increased number of hair follicles go into the resting phase. This usually diminishes 4-5 months after pregnancy. In a similar way, hormonal birth control can cause hair follicles to enter the resting phase too soon and too long, which results in thinning hair.
Medical conditions or medication: There are a few different medical conditions that cause hair loss. Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS), thyroid problems, anemia and autoimmune diseases are amongst a few of them.
Products and treatment: Many women subject their hair to rough treatment, harsh chemicals and hairstyles that pull at the follicles tightly. This can damage them over time, creating thinner and less healthy hair. Itís an unfortunate paradox – in trying to make our hair look great, we damage it and make it look worse!