Answers To Women’s Hair Loss Treatment
For many of us, hair loss at any age and for any reason is just too much to deal with, specially for us, women. Seeing your hair every morning on the pillow and in the sink can trigger some real negative emotions. However, no matter what the reason of your hair loss is, there is a treatment. It all depends on the causes and the factors that made you shed your locks. In this article, I’m gonna try to talk about some of the reasons that make us women lose our curls and some of the treatments that are safe and easy to regrow hair back.
What Triggers Hair Loss?
Many factors are to blame for hair loss including medical conditions, genetics, some medications, scalp infection, hormonal changes and many other factors. But hair loss may be a sign of a more serious medical condition that needs an immediate treatment. Here are the possible causes of hair loss.
Understand How Hair Grows
Before we talk about the most common causes of hair lose, lets take a look on how our hair grows. The scalp is home to about 100,000 hairs. Each one has its own life cycle. A follicle produces a single hair that grows at a rate of half an inch per month. It hangs in there for 2 to 6 years, then stops for about a month.
Many of the medical conditions interfere with one of the hair growth three phases:
The Anagen Phase
It’s when hair hair is actively growing. About 85% of your hair is in the anagen, or growing phase, at any given time.
The Catagen Phase
A short period of time, about two weeks in duration, that allows the follicle to regenerate.
This Phase is considered the resting phase of hair growth, and lasts for two to four months. At the end of this phase the hair falls out. Many medical conditions encourage hair to enter the telogen phase. This may cause as many as 300 hairs to be lost each day. The medical term for excessive hair loss during this phase is telogen effluvium.
- Telogen effluvium is a phenomenon that occurs after pregnancy, major surgery, drastic weight loss, or extreme stress, in which you shed large amounts of hair per day. Normally, we lose about 100 to 150 hairs every day. During telogen effluvium, hair shifts faster than normal from its growing phase into the “resting” phase before moving quickly into the shedding, or telogen, phase. This may cause as many as 300 hairs to be lost each day.
How Much Hair Loss Is Normal?
Most people shed about 100-150 strands every day. Don’t worry if you find a few in your hairbrush or on your clothes. But if it starts to fall out in clumps or if you notice it getting thinner over time, check with your doctor.
Most Common Causes Of Hair Loss
Several medical conditions can either temporarily or permanently interfere with normal hair growth and development. To find out what’s wrong with your hair, see a doctor to rule out a medical condition. Some of these conditions include the following:
Hereditary Hair Loss
Hair loss that is genetic is known as androgenetic alopecia and, according to the American Academy of Dermatology, is the most common cause of hair loss. Women with this trait tend to develop thinning at the hairline behind the bangs. The condition develops slowly and may start as early as your 20s. Your dermatologist will examine the pattern of hair loss to determine if it’s hereditary and may order blood work to rule out other causes
Iron deficiency anemia
Women who have heavy periods or don’t eat enough iron-rich foods may be prone to iron deficiency, in which the blood doesn’t have enough red blood cells. Iron deficiency anemia causes extreme fatigue, weakness, and pale skin. You may also notice headaches, difficulty concentrating, cold hands and feet, and hair loss.
This butterfly-shaped gland at the front of your neck pumps out chemicals that keep your body humming along. Too much or too little thyroid hormone, causes your hair growth cycle to take a hit. However, thinner locks are rarely the only sign of a thyroid problem. You might lose or gain weight, become sensitive to cold or heat, or notice changes in your heart rate.
Chemo and radiation therapy, two of the most widely used therapies, can take a toll on your hair. This type of cancer treatment works on killing cancer cells, unfortunately it doesn’t separate the good cells from bad ones. As a results, this treatment harms hair follicles and trigger dramatic hair loss. Luckily, once the treatment is finished, hair usually grows back.
The hormonal process of testosterone converting to DHT, which then harms hair follicles, happens in both men and women. Under normal conditions, women have a minute fraction of the level of testosterone that men have, but even a lower level can cause DHT- triggered hair loss in women.
An autoimmune disease develops when the immune system, which defends the body against disease, decides the healthy cells are foreign. As a result, the immune system attacks healthy cells. Depending on the type, an autoimmune disease can affect one or many different types of body tissue.
Major psychological stress
High-level physical or emotional stress can cause a person to suddenly shed huge amounts of hair. including:
- Serious illness or major surgery.
- Trauma involving blood loss.
- Severe emotional distress.
Scalp infections and skin disorders
A number of infectious agents and infection-related conditions can contribute to hair loss. Some common ones are:
- Demodex folliculorum.
- Seborrheic Dermatitis
In lupus, something goes wrong with the immune system, which is the part of the body that fights off viruses, bacteria, and germs. Lupus can cause the hair on the scalp to gradually thin out, although a few people lose clumps of hair. In most cases, hair will grow back when lupus is treated. But some people with lupus develop round (discoid) lesions on the scalp.
Too much shampooing, styling, and dyeing can harm your tresses. Heat and chemicals weaken the hair, causing it to break and fall out. Wearing cornrows or tight ponytails can irritate the scalp and cause hair to fall out. Let your hair down, and it should grow back normally.
Diet and extreme weight loss
You may lose more than weight with a fad diet. And if you drop 15 pounds or more, you might also shed some hair a few months down the road. Fortunately, it’ll return when you’re back on a healthy diet.
Women’s Hair Treatment
If your doctor determines that you don’t have serious health issues, or resolving them doesn’t minimize symptoms, your next stop is the dermatologist’s office. They will perform a scalp exam and take a detailed medical and family history to determine why your hair is thinning and help you develop a treatment plan.
Currently, the best (and only FDA-approved) treatment for hair loss—no matter what its cause—is topical minoxidil, the drug used in Rogaine. However, you have to be patient, as noticeable results usually take three to four months and the product must be used once a day. It tends to work better if started early. This OTC treatment available in mousse or liquid formulas. It’s not clear exactly how minoxidil works, but studies show it lengthens the growth phase of your hair. Applying 2% minoxidil to the scalp twice daily has been shown to produce minimal regrowth in 40% of women and moderate regrowth in 19%; possible side effects include itching and redness of the scalp.
If you don’t respond to minoxidil, your doctor might prescribe antiandrogen medications, which may slow hair loss and even stimulate growth in some women. In select cases, the doctor may prescribe finasteride, a 5-alpha reductase inhibitor, which blocks an enzyme that regulates the production of androgens. However, this medication causes birth defects, therefor, it is FDA approved only for men and women who are no longer childbearing.
HAIR STYLE FOR MORE BODY
Don’t underestimate the importance of the right cut, color, and styling routine:
- Swich your part: Changing the direction of your part can really help thinning hair. Hair tends to lie flatter against the scalp when brushed repeatedly in the same direction
- Keep cool: In general, the less heat you use, the better. Styling with heat can damage the hair shaft.
- Brush with care: some brushes with hard plastic or metal bristles can cause breakage. Instead, try a brush made of gentle boar bristles or flexible nylon.
- Get a volumizing cut: Shorter cuts are kinder to thinning hair. The longer the hair grows, the more likely it is that sections will separate and reveal the scalp.
- Color strategically: Bleaching or significantly lightening the hair color all over can cause damage or breakage. But well-placed highlights hide thinning by making the hair color more similar to the color of the scalp.
Many pros suggest scalp massage for clients with thinning hair. Use your fingertips and a bit of argan or coconut oil to rub in a circular motion for several minutes before shampooing.
Use natural based shampoos as a part of treatment
Be gentle to your hair and scalp. Try to shampoo with natural organic shampoos that nourish hair and stimulate the follicle to produce more healthy hair.
Simple tips to using any anti-hair loss shampoo:
- Apply a decent amount of shampoo to your scalp.
- Give your scalp a gentle massage.
- Leave shampoo on for 2 minutes.
- Rinse with warm clean water.
- Repeat for a second round (always shampoo your hair twice for a more clean scalp and hair)
- Dry gently with a towel.
- Repeat this every two days (avoid washing hair everyday).