Interestingly, although we blame this loss on androgens, if you measure a woman’s circulating level of testosterone in the blood after menopause, it is generally not elevated. So how can low androgens cause androgentic alopecia? It’s partly still a mystery, but we do have some clues. Compared to the dramatic decrease in circulating estrogen, testosterone is relatively high. After menopause, the ratio of the hormones becomes reversed.
Ahh this is so helpful and it makes a lot of sense! Thank you so much for this! I’ll definitely take all this on board! Honestly since my hair started thinning a few months ago I’ve been so panicked and confused as to why it was happening. I’m quite vain and I’ve always loved my hair so I’ve been really worried about keeping my curly locks! My friend actually recommended getting a wig made. Apparently you can have small pieces and extensions to cover up certain thinning parts of your hair without losing all your hair (and I’m definitely leaning towards this option). I read about a company called Optima Hair (they’re located near where I live), has anyone else used them? They look good but I don’t know much about it if I’m honest so I’d appreciate any advice or recommendations people could give me! x
You need to try the hair bungee. At least this is the conclusion I’ve come to in the last few months as this tiny piece of elastic has slowly made its way into my consciousness. A few months ago, a hair bungee arrived in my monthly Birchbox sample box. It looks exactly like a little bungee cord, complete with two metal hooks on the ends. I played with it briefly, but my hair is layered and not really long enough for a ponytail, so I passed it to a friend who looked at it in confusion and thanked me. I’m sure it’s floating around somewhere in the bottom of her handbag right now. Then during NYFW I went to a panel sponsored by Pantene featuring the Cushnie et Ochs designers Carly Cushnie and Michelle Ochs discussing the intersection of beauty and fashion with celebrity hair guru Danilo (you know you’re a guru when you can go by one name). Anyway, he used 60+ hair bungees on the models for the Fall 2011 Cushnie et Ochs show.
Going bald was one of the best things that ever happen to me. I thoroughly enjoyed finding hundreds of hairs on my pillow every morning and wads of hair clogging the shower drain. My wife loves it as much as I do and she loves kissing me on top of my smooth head. What a turn on! For me, male pattern baldness is a normal, natural inherited trait and not a disease in need of a cure. I have been bald for almost 20 years and I love it more than ever. Perhaps it’s because I lost hair later in life and married a woman who adores bald men like me.
Research suggests that hair loss during menopause is the result of a hormonal imbalance. Specifically, it’s related to a lowered production of estrogen and progesterone. These hormones help hair grow faster and stay on the head for longer periods of time. When the levels of estrogen and progesterone drop, hair grows more slowly and becomes much thinner. A decrease in these hormones also triggers an increase in the production of androgens, or a group of male hormones. Androgens shrink hair follicles, resulting in hair loss on the head. In some cases, however, these hormones can cause more hair to grow on the face. This is why some menopausal women develop facial “peach fuzz” and small sprouts of hair on the chin.
Nutritional deficiencies. Hair loss can also be a sign of certain nutritional deficiencies, including deficiencies of vitamins A and D, iron and protein. It should come as no surprise that one of the first recommendations we make to women concerned with accelerated hair loss is to check their diet and add a medical-grade multivitamin to fill any gaps.
Topical Medication: There are a few alternatives to finasteride, should it prove to be ineffective or if it starts causing side effects (some patients report losing their sex drive on the drug). One of these options is minoxidil (aka Rogaine). It’s a topical product, available over the counter, that stimulates hair growth “by activating potassium channels in the follicle—this results in growth factors and prostaglandins that promote hair growth,” Fusco says. “This keeps the hairs in the growth cycle for a longer period of time.” Your dermatologist may be able to prescribe minoxidil formulations of higher percentages, she adds. So, see your doctor to decide which route is best.
Trichotillomania, classified as an “impulse control disorder,” causes people to compulsively pull their hair out. “It’s sort of like a tic, the person is constantly playing and pulling their hair,” says Dr. Glashofer says. Unfortunately, this constant playing and pulling can actually strip your head of its natural protection: hair. Trichotillomania often begins before the age of 17 and is four times as common in women as in men.
Hair loss induced by cancer chemotherapy has been reported to cause changes in self-concept and body image. Body image does not return to the previous state after regrowth of hair for a majority of patients. In such cases, patients have difficulties expressing their feelings (alexithymia) and may be more prone to avoiding family conflicts. Family therapy can help families to cope with these psychological problems if they arise.
Finally, while it’s hard, it’s just as important to keep things in perspective with hair loss at 20. Yes, it’s creepy when you first see it, but you’re not alone. Many guys lose hair in their twenties, and a whopping one in every two will have it by 50. So you’ve got hair loss at 20. That’s a good thing. You’ve got a 30 year head start to learn how to rock that look over the guy who loses hair later in life.
If you want shinier locks, use conditioner every time you wash. Bonus: Conditioner cuts down on friction and breakage when you brush your hair later. And did you know that you can use conditioner to wash your hair, sans shampoo? Since shampoo can be very harsh, it's a nice alternative once in awhile. Our experts in the Good Housekeeping Research Institute Beauty Labtried it and found that while conditioner may not do the deep cleaning most shampoos will, it will still leave your hair feeling and looking nice
The Belgravia Centre is an organisation specialising in hair growth and hair loss prevention with two clinics and in-house pharmacies in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world’s largest gallery of hair growth comparison photos and demonstrates the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time to arrange a free consultation.
Just because hair loss is a visible condition doesn’t mean that you’ll see it right away. In fact, people often don’t notice that they are experience hair loss until half of the process has occurred. It’s important to keep an eye on the following symptoms so that you can treat the condition as early as possible. The earlier you treat hair loss, the better your results will be. Here are a few common female hair loss symptoms:
Over the months to follow, I lost hair every day, whether it was in the shower coming out in handfuls or waking up with it all over my pillow. My parents and I tried everything to stop it, injections, steroid creams, immunologists, trichologists, dermatologists… a never ending stream of appointments which always resulted with the same answer -I had Alopecia, no one knew why, what it was from or how I could stop it.
Every guy is at risk of losing his hair, some more quickly than others. It sucks. The follicle itself shrivels up and is rendered incapable of regrowing anything. This type of hair loss is called androgenetic alopecia, often referred to as male pattern baldness. (That's the permanent kind, not the temporary thing that happens sometimes due to stress.) This plays out in two ways: the thinning of each hair and the overall loss of density. But, in certain cases of alopecia, these losses are not truly “permanent.” At least, not right away. Sometimes, it can be slowed down or delayed.
Lichen planopilaris, a type of alopecia, occurs when a common skin condition, called lichen planus, affects the scalp. Lichen planopilaris may cause a dry, flaky rash to appear on the skin that causes hair on the scalp to fall out in clumps. The scalp may also become red, irritated, and covered in small white or red itchy, painful, or burning bumps.
Ever since I was around 13, I've had bad dandruff and a dry scalp, and thus, have created bad habits of scratching my scalp a lot. Recently, I've stopped, as I don't want to lose any more hair, I use Head and Shoulders, and a tar based shampoo, I also put coconut oil on my scalp now. I would like to know if dandruff, dry scalp, and itching can cause balding, and if so, is it temporary, the... READ MORE
Alternative approaches involve little to no risk and can be an extremely effective means of treating hair loss. This level of approach includes several different therapies. Herbal remedies are the most prominent, though in addition women may turn to such techniques scalp massage in order to help stimulate hair follicles and regenerate hair growth. These can be valid and effective options, though most women find that herbal remedies are the easiest alternative treatment to follow, as the others require a greater time and monetary commitment. In addition, herbal remedies are the only viable option to treat the hormonal imbalance directly at its source.
If any of the above scares you because you recognize the symptoms, don't fret. The key to successful regrowth? First, admit you have a problem. Each day you dwell in denial, you're losing precious time. The more hair you've lost, the less likely it is to all grow back. Telltale signs, like a wider part or a smaller ponytail, don't show up until you've lost nearly half your hair! Seek out trichologists and dermatologists or endocrinologists who specialize in hair problems. (A good place to start is the American Hair Loss Association.)
Less common causes of hair loss without inflammation or scarring include the pulling out of hair, certain medications including chemotherapy, HIV/AIDS, hypothyroidism, and malnutrition including iron deficiency. Causes of hair loss that occurs with scarring or inflammation include fungal infection, lupus erythematosus, radiation therapy, and sarcoidosis. Diagnosis of hair loss is partly based on the areas affected.
Congenital triangular alopecia – It is a triangular, or oval in some cases, shaped patch of hair loss in the temple area of the scalp that occurs mostly in young children. The affected area mainly contains vellus hair follicles or no hair follicles at all, but it does not expand. Its causes are unknown, and although it is a permanent condition, it does not have any other effect on the affected individuals.
Calling all gym fanatics—if you’re spending more time in the gym than you’re spending at home, it may be time to reevaluate your regimen. According to a study in the Annals of Dermatology, the more strenuous a participant’s workout routine was, the more likely they were to experience hair loss later in life. If you’re pumping iron more than a few hours a day, it’s going to affect your hairline. So, if you’d like to keep your hair, cutting a few hours of gym time every week may be the trick.
Extreme hair loss should be discussed with your healthcare practitioner. But in the case of mild to moderate thinning hair, which is usually a result of thyroid imbalance, hormonal imbalance, nutritional deficiencies, or elevated stress hormones, most women can get relief naturally — without having to resort to a new hair cut or experiment with hair thickening creams!