Yes. Doctors use the Savin scale. It ranges from normal hair density to a bald crown, which is rare. The scale helps document female pattern baldness, a condition your doctor might call androgenic alopecia. You probably know it as male pattern baldness, but it affects about 30 million American women. Experts think genes and aging play a role, along with the hormonal changes of menopause. Your hair could thin all over, with the greatest loss along the center of the scalp.
Hair has deep psychological and sexual meaning. Both menopause and loss of hair are often associated with loss of femininity and sexuality. These thoughts and changes can all feed into each other, and it becomes a vicious and demoralising cycle. Rest assured, though, it is very rare for a woman to go bald. And things can be done to get the best out of your hair during this stressful time.
Follicles grow in cycles (growing – resting – falling out). Therefore, not all follicles grow at the same time and they have periods of rest. During the rest period the hair may remain in the follicle for some time or it may fall out. This cycle repeats itself for the whole of your life. It takes 8-12 weeks for a hair to grow from the base of the follicle to the surface of the skin. This means that if you remove a hair, you may have to wait 8-12 weeks for it to grow again. Hairs you see growing a few days later in the same area are from different follicles.
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Hair loss can be hereditary. Hereditary hair loss is call androgenetic alopecia, otherwise for males, for females, male pattern baldness female pattern baldness. Androgenetic alopecia occurs once a hair follicle sheds, plus the hair which replaces it is thinner plus finer than what was there formerly. The hair follicles carry on to shrink plus finally hair stops growing in total. Still, opposing to accepted belief, inborn hair loss is not only innate from the maternal side, it can be agreed down from also the mother’s otherwise father’s genes – however is extra likely to happen if both parents have this matter.
The warning signs for men and women with genetic hair loss are slightly different. For men, the two “danger zones” are the crown and the hairline, which are usually where evidence of thinning hair can signal the start of male pattern hairloss – although less eagle-eyed or image-conscious individuals may take many months or even years to notice the gradual changes.
According to psychologist Dr. Ana Fonseca, “For women, self-esteem and self-concept are the reflex of social influence, which can act as a source of conflict and misfit, with repercussions on body image and health. The relationship with the hair often includes anxiety about its general condition, if it’s thinning and falling out, or going gray. Hair is valued in connection with beauty and femininity, sexuality and attractiveness, so when losing it, people are affected negatively in their self-esteem and self-image. Hair loss threatens our vanity, how much we value ourselves and is usually seen as unattractive and often associated with being unwell or aging. It is recognized that there are also emotional factors associated with hair loss so it can mean psychological discomfort.”
I explained to Emily that The Iowa Writers’ Workshop wasn’t really in the business of handing out medical degrees, but that since my hair was also thinning, and since I was curious, and since I supposed we weren’t the only two women on the planet who wanted some answers, I’d do some research. This is what I came up with for how to handle hair loss during perimenopause.
Symptoms of hair loss include hair loss in patches usually in circular patterns, dandruff, skin lesions, and scarring. Alopecia areata (mild – medium level) usually shows in unusual hair loss areas, e.g., eyebrows, backside of the head or above the ears, areas the male pattern baldness usually does not affect. In male-pattern hair loss, loss and thinning begin at the temples and the crown and hair either thins out or falls out. Female-pattern hair loss occurs at the frontal and parietal.
What can women do to treat it? As I note in my book, the first thing to do is to get a true diagnosis and find Dr. Right (for you). Women need to know that no stone has been left unturned. So the go-to person for hair loss is a dermatologist. Find a physician who is experienced in treating women’s hair loss. You should go there ready to tell the doc what’s been going on in your life--stress, recent pregnancy, severe weight loss due to dieting/anorexia/bulimia; current medications (over the counter and prescription), herbs, vitamins, birth control pills (start/stopping); HRT (start/stopping) and even habits such as wearing hair in tight buns, pony tails, corn rows etc. The physician should be able to tell if something is causing the hair loss and/or go on to a more definitive exam,which might include a scalp biopsy to rule out a fungus or other infection.
Turns out I may be on to something. Research shows that if scalp massages are done with essential oils, including lavender, cedarwood, thyme, and rosemary (the latter being especially effective), they do indeed stimulate hair growth. Of course, the nice thing is, we don’t need to embarrass ourselves by making crazy requests to fancy hair salons (although, if the salon is fancy enough, of course, no request will be seen as crazy); we can give scalp massages to ourselves. And if your sleeping partner doesn’t care, or if you sleep by yourself, then for an additional benefit, you can do what I sometimes do, which is rub rosemary oil with coconut oil into my scalp before bed, and then sleep with it in my hair/head all night.
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.
7.Iron Deficiency in women, the number-one cause of iron deficiency is too-heavy periods, says Jacques Moritz, M.D., director of gynecology at Mount Sinai St. Luke’s Roosevelt in New York City. “They lose too much blood, replace about half of it, and then lose too much again the following month,” he says. “It’s like filling up a car with a small hold in the tank.” Your period should only fill two to three tablespoons each month. Try the tampon test: If you have to change your tampon more frequently than every two hours, talk to your gyno.
Hormones are often not the only things to blame when it comes to female hair loss. Several factors can be at play. If female hair loss runs in your family, you may be more likely to experience hair loss during menopause. Other hormonal imbalances, nutritional or iron deficiencies, medication, illness, conditions (like thyroid disease and anemia), diets, and surgeries can also contribute to hair loss.
Stress is one of the major hair fall reasons. A hair follicle needs energy to grow. Coenzyme Q10, found in whole grains, fish and meat, boosts the scalp's ability to produce energy, especially in a cell's mitochondria or energy factory. Stress causes oxidation, harming Coenzyme Q10 among other anti-oxidants, thereby being one of the major contributors to the list of reasons for hair fall.