Hair loss in women is often a more complex issue than male hair loss. Although female pattern baldness is probably the most common hair loss condition seen in women, there is a number of other potential causes. If you are noticing your hair starting to thin it is advisable to book an appointment with a hair loss specialist who can diagnose the problem.
Causes of female hair loss include:
Female pattern hair loss
As with male pattern baldness, female pattern hair loss is a genetic condition, which can be passed down on either the maternal or paternal line. Hair loss occurs when dihydrotestosterone attaches to the hair follicles, causing them to shrink and reducing the life cycle of the hair.
How to recognise female pattern hair loss
Unlike male pattern baldness, where hair loss usually occurs only on the top of the head, female pattern hair loss tends to be more diffuse, with the hair thinning across the whole scalp. While some women do find that hair loss is greater around the parting or the hairline, it is rare for an entire area to go bald.
Although female pattern hair loss is usually associated with ageing, it can present in women as young as twenty. Most women with the condition will notice some thinning by the age of forty, with the hair loss becoming most apparent post menopause.
Treating female pattern hair loss
If you think that you are suffering from female pattern hair loss, there are a number of treatment options available, from scalp micropigmentation to hair loss products, scalp microneedling and more. For more information, please see the individual treatment pages or contact us to make an appointment with one of our hair loss specialists.
Alopecia areata is an autoimmune condition, affecting both men and women, that is characterised by specific patches of baldness that can appear anywhere on the scalp. Very rarely, the condition can lead to alopecia universalis, where total hair loss occurs all over the scalp and body.
What causes alopecia areata?
Although the exact cause of alopecia areata is not yet known, triggers are thought to include:
- Hormonal changes, such as pregnancy or the menopause
Treating alopecia areata
Alopecia areata usually resolves itself within about a year. However, if you have had alopecia areata for over a year, or would like to minimise its appearance while you wait for it to resolve, there are a number of treatments available. Please contact us to book an appointment with one of our hair loss specialists.
Like female pattern baldness, telogen effluvium presents as a generalised diffuse thinning of the hair. However, where female pattern hair loss is a gradual process, telogen effluvium occurs suddenly and is usually a temporary condition. Although not exclusively a female hair loss condition, telogen effluvium is much more common in women than men, probably because most of the triggers are predominantly female problems.
What causes telogen effluvium?
Telogen effluvium usually occurs when a sudden, stressful event causes the hair to enter the telogen (resting) phase of its life cycle earlier than usual. This means that the affect hairs will stop growing for around three months, after which they will fall out.
Events likely to precipitate telogen effluvium include:
- Severe stress, such as a sudden bereavement
- Sudden hormonal changes, eg miscarriage, termination of pregnancy or starting or stopping contraceptive pills
How to treat telogen effluvium
Telogen effluvium is usually a temporary condition, with regrowth beginning after about six months. However, in rare cases, the problem continues. This is known as chronic telogen effluvium, or diffuse thinning.
If you think you may be suffering from chronic telogen effluvium, or if you would like to speed up the regrowth process, there are plenty of treatments available – please contact us to book an appointment with one of our hair loss specialists.
Traction alopecia is characterised by hair loss around the hairline and temples. It is caused by excessive strain placed on the hair follicles, usually due to extensions, braiding or weaves.
Because the hairstyles associated with the condition are generally worn by women, traction alopecia is generally seen as a female hair loss condition, although it can affect some men.
We have several options available to effectively treat traction alopecia – if you would like to discuss this, please contact us to book a consultation with one of our hair loss experts.