Female Hair Loss: What Causes Thinning Hair In Women?

Women with hair loss, or alopecia, can have a hard time of it. They often feel embarrassed and self-conscious about it. And since female hair loss is not a life-threatening condition, their families and friends, and sometimes even their doctors, often don’t take their concerns seriously. This can lead to depression, anxiety, and other emotional problems.

Let’s Look At The Hair Growth Cycle

Did you know that your hair has its own growth cycle?

An individual hair will grow about a half-inch a month. This growing phase lasts anywhere from two to six years. At the end of this time, the hair rests for a couple of months before being shed. The hair follicle then grows a new hair to replace it.

At any given time, 90% of the hairs on your head is growing, with the other 10% in the resting phase. Normally your hair grows back when it’s shed at the end of the resting phase, and you never notice the difference.

But sometimes something happens to disrupt this hair growth cycle.

Causes of Women’s Hair Loss

We women are definitely at the mercy of our hormones. And a hormonal imbalance is the most common cause of female hair loss. Many women notice an increase in hair loss about three months after having a baby. This is a temporary condition that will correct itself as the hormones return to normal levels.

Birth control pills can also cause hormone problems. And of course, many women notice increased hair loss as they go through menopause.

Since the first sign of many diseases, including diabetes and lupus, is hair loss, it’s a good idea to see your doctor to rule out any medical problems if you notice excessive hair shedding.

Medications are also implicated in this problem. The first thing that comes to most people’s minds is chemotherapy, but other prescription drugs, including antidepressants and blood thinners, can be at fault.

Many women aren’t aware that something as simple as changing their hair style can reverse their hair loss. Any hair style that pulls at the hair for a long period of time can damage the hair follicles.

Braiding, hair extensions, cornrows, and tight ponytails and buns can all cause hair loss in women. However, hair loss due to these causes is reversible if you change your hair style in time.

Do Women Go Bald Like Men Do?

Usually we don’t.

What happens is that the new hair that grows in to replace the hair that was shed is thinner and shorter than it was before. As time goes on, this can lead to more of a “peach fuzz” appearance, rather than bald spots, as seen in men. This type of hair loss in women is genetic, and usually runs in families.

If you’re a woman faced with thinning hair or hair loss, this problem can really impact your self-image. It’s important to find out what’s causing it so you can choose the proper treatment.

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