In many ways, women experience hair loss, including thinning hair, hair breakage, and brittle hair that’s more prone to snapping when combed or styled. The most common form of female pattern baldness (also known as female-pattern alopecia) refers to diminish hair on the upper of the scalp, but it can also affect the side of the head and the back of the scalp. What are the causes and treatments of female pattern baldness?
Explaining Female Pattern Baldness
According to Mayo Clinic, female pattern hair loss usually begins around age 30. Most women will experience some degree of thinning, but when hair loss occurs rapidly or affects large areas of your scalp, you may have female pattern hair loss. It’s caused by genetics and hormones, and age, so there’s no way to prevent it from happening.
Vellus hair is lovely, nearly invisible strands that don’t grow more than 1/4 inch long and often appear on your face or back. It is caused by a sensitivity to male hormones (androgens) present in men and women. The hair follicles become smaller, producing thinner, shorter hairs that may eventually fall out. As a result, only vellus hair remains.
What does female pattern baldness look like
Female pattern baldness (also known as female-pattern hair loss) is a genetic condition that affects approximately 40% of women. It’s characterized by thinning hair on a woman’s head, particularly at her temples. The result can be an oval-shaped area where hair has become thinner over time.
The main difference between male pattern baldness and female-pattern hair loss is that women tend to experience thinning at their hairline, not on top of their head. This can be one of several genetic conditions passed down from parent to child.
Causes of Female Pattern Baldness
The medical name for hair loss in women is alopecia. Hair loss affects around 50% of women, but it becomes more common as we age. However, sudden or patchy hair loss can signify an underlying medical condition, so it’s essential to see your doctor if you have these concerns.
The most typical hair loss in women is called female pattern hair loss, or FPHL. This term describes several conditions in which women experience diffuse thinning throughout their scalp. Female Pattern Hair Loss usually begins at menopause, and it is hereditary; your risk increases if other family members have experienced it.
Symtoms of Female Pattern Baldness
Hair shedding is a normal phenomenon when it comes to hair. It happens to everyone, men and women alike. But when you fail more than 100 strands of hair per day, it becomes worrisome. In extreme cases, excessive hair loss can cause bald patches in certain areas of your scalp. This is medically known as alopecia. The most standard types of alopecia in women are Female Pattern Baldness (FPB) and Alopecia Areata.
Treatments of Female Pattern Baldness
Minoxidil is typically used in women to stimulate hair growth, but it is not FDA approved. It works by widening blood vessels in your scalp and keeping more oxygen-rich blood flowing to hair follicles. However, studies show that minoxidil’s effectiveness was limited after 12 months. Propecia (finasteride), an oral prescription drug, has been shown to work better for longer than minoxidil.
When to contact a doctor
Pattern hair loss can affect men, women, and children; however, it’s a far more common problem for women. You should consult your physician if you’re experiencing excessive hair shedding that seems unusual or is coupled with other symptoms.
Self-care is often overlooked, but maintaining healthy hair can take a toll on your body and psyche. Women’s bodies constantly change due to our fluctuating hormones, so it’s essential to understand how stress, diet, and genetics affect hair health. Start with a consultation with a doctor or dermatologist about what treatment options will work best for you. Once you have an action plan in place, focus on relaxing therapies such as meditation or yoga that can keep anxiety at bay during stressful times.
Many women choose to wear wigs or other head coverings in addition to trying other treatments for their thinning hair, such as taking supplements or using essential oils on their scalp. There is no remedy for Female Pattern Baldness. However, effective treatment options may be available. The most popular choices are medication (Minoxidil) or hair transplant surgery. Discuss these treatment options with your doctor to determine which is best for you.