How Your Hair Falling Out Can Cause Daily Struggle
Hair loss is generally considered to be a man’s problem. But women account for 40% of all hair loss sufferers in the United States. As experts in plastic surgery and hair restoration, we wanted to explain the main causes of hair loss in women, the emotional toll it can take, and possible solutions.
What causes hair loss in women?
The most common cause of hair loss in both men and women is androgenetic alopecia, also referred to as male or female pattern baldness. A hereditary condition, androgenetic alopecia is believed to be caused by dihydrotestosterone, which derives from the male hormone testosterone. Testosterone gets converted to DHT within hair follicles, which then binds to and shrinks the follicles and results in hair falling out.
Because men have higher testosterone levels than women, they are likely to produce higher DHT levels, leading to increased hair loss. That’s why with men you’ll often see a receding hairline, which can progress to partial or complete baldness, while women tend to experience hair thinning on the top and sides of the scalp.
Are there any other causes of hair loss among women?
Telogen effluvium is a form of hair loss that can develop when the body is put through extreme stress, such as child birth, malnutrition, or major surgery. The condition involves a sudden shift from hair growth or resting phases, to the hair shedding phase. This can occur within six weeks to three months after a stressful experience and is much more common in women than men. Other triggers include iron deficiency and changes in medication.
Traction alopecia is another form of hair loss that is more likely to occur in women. It’s triggered by trauma to the hair follicles, caused by hair styles that pull the hair tightly, such as braids, ponytails, and hair extensions.
What is the impact on women when they lose hair?
It goes without saying that hair loss can be devastating to a person’s self-esteem regardless of gender. But experts agree that women are significantly more likely to suffer emotionally as a result of their hair falling out. Women who experience hair loss often become depressed and develop low self-esteem. They may avoid social situations, have diminished work performance, or give up healthy habits like exercising regularly and eating well.
Why are women impacted so much more heavily by hair loss than men?
In our society, it’s expected that a man loses his hair as he ages. In fact, many men shave their heads completely while they are young and it’s considered to be a sexy look.
But for women, hair is often a source of pride and beauty. Long, beautiful hair is associated with sexuality, sensuality, and is considered to be the ultimate feature of femininity. If a women starts to lose her hair, it can be devastating to her identity, self-esteem, and feelings of attractiveness.
How can women cope with hair loss?
If you are a woman experiencing hair loss, then here are some ways to cope:
- Remind yourself that hair loss is not life-threatening. It may not be pleasant and it can be unfortunate, but you can live with thinning hair. Your true friends and family will like you for who you are and not for how much hair you have on your head.
- Work with beauty professionals to find a hairstyle that suits you. Talk to a hairstylist who can help you develop a hairstyle that brings out your best features and covers up the thinning sections naturally.
- Consider talk therapy. Discussing the emotional impact of hair loss with a mental health professional can often help.
- Look for treatments. There are treatments for hair loss. One of the most effective options for women is NeoGraft Hair Transplant available at Northeastern Plastic Surgery. It is the least invasive hair restoration technique, requires no stitches, and there’s a quick recovery time.
Dr. Fodero understands your desire for a beautiful, youthful looking body and facial appearance. He uses the latest plastic surgery techniques to produce outstanding results. He and his staff are friendly, helpful, and available to answer any questions you may have. Please contact Northeastern Plastic Surgery today to learn more and schedule a consultation.
*You can read this same article on the NeoGraft blog! Click here.