Female Pattern Hair Loss: Causes, Symptoms, Tests & Treatment
Female pattern baldness is a particular type of hair loss that is seen only in women. This can take place due to various reasons like hormonal imbalance, ageing, hereditary and genetic reasons. This is often referred to as alopecia areata or androgenic alopecia by experts. Most of the women experience this during menopause. Other than these factors, certain medications that are taken and postoperative factors can also cause alopecia areata. Nowadays even young women experience severe hair loss due to various factors like improper diet, stress and use of too much of hair styling products. Studies on female pattern hair loss show that only less than 45% of women have healthy and thick hair throughout their lives.
Causes of Female Pattern Hair Loss:
It is normal for a woman to lose fifty to hundred strands of hair per day. When the hair strands falling off increases to more than 100 per day, then you can say that a woman suffers from female pattern hair loss. Usually a hair strand grows up to ½ an inch every month and it continues growing for about six years. After its growing period, it falls off after some time. If the hair strands fall off before the usual time for it to fall off, then you can say that the person is suffering from androgenic alopecia or areata. You experience baldness when the hair strands fall off at its normal pace but new hair fails to grow in its place. Below are given some prime factors that affect female pattern hair loss.
- Breakage of hair can take place when you undergo certain medical treatments and also due to hair twisting and abnormalities of the hair shaft.
- When you suffer from skin disorders and infections, it may lead to the formation of scars and wounds on the hair follicles.
- Autoimmune disorders also lead to hair fall.
- Hormonal imbalance, like fluctuations in the thyroid hormone and secretion of too much of testosterone can case female pattern hair loss.
- If you body becomes deficient in iron and zinc, you can suffer from hair loss.
- Reduces amounts of vitamins like vitamin B or biotin and other vitamins in the body may cause female pattern hair loss.
- Laser therapy, beta blockers or chemotherapy are also responsible for this type of hair loss.
- Another reason for this issue is sexually transmitted infections like syphilis.
- Surgery or any major ailments can cause your hair to fall off. Child birth is also found to cause female pattern hair loss.
Female Pattern Baldness Symptoms:
Female pattern baldness is totally different from male pattern baldness. Some of the major symptoms of female pattern baldness are as follows:
- Females experience hair thinning mainly on the top and on the crown area of the scalp. Here balding usually takes place with the widening of the centre hair part. So, if you find that your centre hair part is getting thinner and wider, you may be suffering from female pattern baldness and you need to treat it immediately, so that no more damage is done.
- The front hairline usually remains as it is in most patients, unaffected by baldness.
- Women may experience acute hair loss, but it does not result in complete or near complete baldness as you find in the case of men.
- More hair loss takes place while bathing and combing hair.
Diagnosis and Tests for Treating Baldness:
You can diagnose female pattern baldness based on certain parameters, which are as follows:
- Ruling out other factors for hair loss.
- The pattern and appearance of hair loss that you experience.
- Medical history of the patient.
Experts mainly look into the symptoms excess of hormone like androgen when they diagnose female pattern baldness. Such symptoms include the following factors:
- Abnormal hair growth on the face and also on the space between belly button and the pubic area.
- Abnormal changes in menstrual periods and enlargement of clitoris.
- Appearance of acne and pimples on the skin.
Skin biopsy and some blood examinations are taken so as to diagnose certain skin disorders that can lead to hair loss.
Best Female Pattern Hair Loss Solutions, Treatment and Medication:
Female pattern hair loss is experienced by many women all over the world. So, medical science today has treatments and solutions for this type of hair loss in women. Some of them are:
- Now you get lots of oral medicines and pills for reducing and slowing down the process of hair fall. Minoxidil is said to be effective for treating female pattern baldness. You have to apply this on the scalp. For women, 2% concentration is recommended. You need to use it for a long time. If you stop using it, hair may start falling again. Hair loss is reduced or stopped in most women using this medication.
- Advanced laser therapies are also effective for treating female pattern baldness.
- Another effective way to treat androgenic alopecia and alopecia areata is hair transplant. Here tiny plugs of hair are removed from areas of the body where hair is thicker and placed in the areas where there is balding. It can cause minor scarring on the area from where hair is removed and there is also a slight risk of skin infection. You may need many transplants. The result that you get at the end of this process is excellent and it is also permanent.
If you happen to experience abnormal hair fall and thinning of hair you need not get panicked. It may not be something serious. But you need to consult a doctor to prevent any further damage to your hair.