Female Pattern Baldness – Would you believe me if I told that over 40% of women over the age of 50 will suffer with female pattern baldness. This statistic did shock me, I do think women are very good at styling and hiding the thinning areas so it is undetected to everyone else.
It is completely normal for women to shed some hair each day, in fact women will shed up to 100 hairs a day. This is considered normal as new growth will typically replace these hairs. However, when bald patches or thinning occurs this means the hairs are not being renewed. This is the start of Female pattern baldness.
Female pattern baldness, also called androgenetic alopecia, is hair loss that affects women. It’s similar to male pattern baldness, except that women can lose their hair in a different pattern than men.
Although both men and women may experience hair loss, it is not as widespread in women as in men and appears differently.
The difference between hair loss in men and hair loss in women.
Women with female pattern baldness usually experience general hair thinning, which affects the volume of their hair. The first signs of female pattern baldness may be a widening part normally at the parting or a feeling that the hair does not feel as thick as usual. Although the scalp may be visible, the hairline usually does not recede. Below are the stages.
Men who suffer with hair loss tend to develop a receding hairline and a bald patch typically on the crown. The receding areas can increase and pull back that much that it can result in balding.
Hair loss is less frequent in women than in men, but it still occurs often. Female pattern baldness increases with age and around 40% of women over the age of 50 will be suffering.
The causes of female pattern baldness.
GENETICS- this plays a significant part in developing female pattern baldness, which means it runs in families. Women can inherit the gene for pattern baldness from either parent.
AGE-Female pattern baldness tends to be more common as a women ages and reaches midlife, although it can begin earlier. It often develops after menopause, so hormonal changes may also be a contributing factor.
HORMONES – female pattern baldness may also develop due to an underlying condition that affects the production of the hormone androgen. Androgen is a hormone that plays a role in pattern baldness. Tumours of the pituitary gland or ovary, which secrete androgen, may also lead to hair loss. Autoimmune disease
AUTOIMMUNE DISEASE Alopecia Areata is a rare autoimmune disorder that causes the immune system to attack the hair follicles leading to hair loss.
MEDICATION Certain medications, such as chemotherapy treatment and cancer treating medication, can cause hair loss as a side effect. However, hair usually regrows once a person has stopped taking the medication.
ILLNESS – Hair loss can develop after a significant illness, such as a severe infection, high fever, or surgery.
TRACTION ALOPECIA – This is hair loss that occurs when a person frequently wears hair extensions or hairstyles that pull the hair too tightly.
What treatments are available.
Microneeding and Mesotherapy
Microneedling first gained its reputation as a scar treatment during the 1990s. Since then, it’s been studied as a potential alternative for thinning hair and hereditary hair loss.
Aside from collagen production in the skin, it’s thought that microneedling can also help induce stem cells in the scalp that lead to hair growth.
Mesotherapy for hair stimulation is using the microneedling technique and combining active hair growth products two work into the lower levels of the skin. Within my Doncaster clinic I use a cocktail containing high levels of ACETYL TETRAPEPTIDE-3, this is clinically proven to be more effective than Minoxidil.
Scalp micropigmentation or SMP is a treatment where we mimic the look of hair follicles on the scalp to replicate the look of hair follicles. This is used for men and women and is suitable to create densification and fullness as well as camouflaging large balding areas. Scalp-micropigmentationis the only permanent hair loss solution that offers immediate, 100% guaranteed results. The results are classes as permanent but will fade over time, I advise my clients to come back for a maintenance after 3-6 years.
One of the most common oral medications used to treat female pattern baldness is spironolactone, which is a diuretic. Diuretics remove excess water from the body. The medication may also block the production of androgen, which may prevent hair loss and help hair regrow. Spironolactone can cause side effects, such as, nausea, and dizziness. Women who are pregnant should not take spironolactone due to a possibility that it might cause congenital disabilities.
Some women may choose to have a hair transplant.
There are two main types, Follicle Unit Transplantation (FUT) or the strip method. Or Follicle Unit Extraction (FUE) individually hairs are removed.
During a hair transplant, a doctor removes hair from an area with healthy hair growth and transplants it to another spot where the hair is missing.
The area from which the doctor transplants the hair usually remains unaffected by hair loss. The doctor performs the procedure while a person is awake, and it takes several hours. A person will be given a local anaesthetic to prevent pain.
As most female pattern baldness may be genetic, it is not always preventable. However, there are steps a woman can take to keep hair as healthy as possible.
My top hair care tips:
Limit the use of hair extensions.
Limit the use of, perming, bleaching and over colouring
Always use heat protection sprays before using heated tools.
Never rub hair or brush hair vigorously when wet, use a comb and pat dry.
Eat a diet rich in protein, essential vitaminsand iron.
Protect the hair from sun damage by wearing a hat or spray protectors.
Female pattern baldness can be sole destroying and affect a person’s self-confidence and self-image. I urge all women who experience excessive hair loss to talk with their doctor or dermatologist, who can help determine the cause. Once the cause has been determined you will then be able to find the best treatment path for you. Please do your research within the market and arrange consults with practitioners for them to advice you what they believe is the best treatment plan for you. Early diagnosis can help and prevents further hair loss, the effectiveness may vary depending on the treatment plan and the individual.
I hope this blog has answered some of those questions and concerns you have about hair loss. If anyone would like to arrange a private consult with me please don’t hesitate to get In Touch.