Female Pattern Hair Loss
About one-third of women experience hair loss (alopecia) at some time in their lives; among postmenopausal women, as many as two-thirds suffer hair thinning or bald spots. Hair loss often has a greater impact on women than on men, because it’s less socially acceptable for them. Alopecia can severely affect a woman’s emotional well-being and quality of life.
At the Dr. Özlem Biçer Clinic we understand how detrimental hair loss can be to a woman’s confidence. However before beginning the journey of regaining this self-confidence, one of the most important things you need to determine is what type of hair loss you are experiencing. Once this type have been established, together with your doctor you will be start thinking of a treatment, and, in some cases, a hair transplant. In order not to upset the emotional well-being of the patient, the hair transplant performed by Dr. Özlem Biçer does not need a complete shaving of the head, that means nobody around you would understand you undergone a hair restauration surgery.
There are generally three types of women hair loss. These are summed up via the three following categories – androgenetic alopecia, Telogen effluvium, and non-pattern hair loss. Androgenetic alopecia is the most common cause of hair loss in women, and the pattern of hair loss in this case, is less predictable in women than it is men. Telogen effluvium can arise from many causes, including medication use, dietary tendencies, and stress. Then there are all of the other rarer types of hair loss, which fall into the ‘non pattern hair loss category’.
Causes of Hair Loss in Women
1. ANDROGENETIC ALOPECIA
The main type of hair loss in both sexes is androgenetic alopecia. In men, hair loss usually begins above the temples, and the receding hairline eventually forms a characteristic “M” shape; hair at the top of the head also thins, often progressing to baldness. In women, androgenetic alopecia begins with gradual thinning at the part line, followed by increasing diffuse hair loss radiating from the top of the head. A woman’s hairline rarely recedes, and women rarely become bald.
As the name suggests, androgenetic alopecia involves the action of the hormones called androgens, which are essential for normal male sexual development and have other important functions in both sexes, including regulation of hair growth. The condition may be inherited and involve several different genes. But unlike androgenetic alopecia in men, in women the precise role of androgens is harder to determine.
Being pregnant is one of the biggest stresses that a woman can put her body through. During this time, hormone levels are completely different to normal, causing many changes in the body – and your hair is not immune from these effects.
During pregnancy, there is an increased level of the hormone Oestrogen. Oestrogen causes your hair to remain in the growing stage of the hair growth cycle, as well as stimulating hair to grow if it’s not already. While you are pregnant, you should expect to have a full, luscious head of hair.
Once you have given birth, however, things are different. As your hormones return to their normal levels, this can cause a massive shock to the body, and your hair can start falling.
This means that all the oestrogen that kept your hair from falling out is now gone, so the hair starts to shed. This can be distressing, because as much as 60% of the hair can enter the resting stage at once, causing a lot of hair to suddenly fall out.
However, the hair will start to grow again. Hair loss caused by pregnancy is essentially a specialised form of Telogen Effluvium.
3. PolycystIc OvarIan Syndrome
As Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome – or PCOS – is a hormonal disorder – specifically affecting your endocrine levels – it causes hormonal imbalances. Many women who suffer with PCOS have increased levels of androgens; testosterone and dihydrotestosterone (DHT). It is this increased amount of DHT that causes hair loss in women who have PCOS.
When found in high amounts, androgens – specifically DHT – latch onto hair follicles and start to affect the hair, eventually causing hair loss. DHT then clogs the hair follicle, causing it to be unable to create new hair. This is essentially another form of androgenetic alopecia.
Menopause has a myriad of effects on your body and hair, all caused by the decreasing levels of oestrogen. Along with the hot flushes, mood changes and sudden increase in facial hair – you can expect your hair to thin, your hairline to recede and an increased amount of hair loss.
The cause of this is the reduced oestrogen levels. As oestrogen keeps your hair in the growing phase, the reduced levels cause the hair’s growth cycle to shorten and hair sheds before it reaches the length it used to be able to reach.
Anaemia is a blood disorder caused by a lack of iron. Iron is an incredibly important nutrient for your hair.
Anaemia is typically caused by a lack of iron-rich food in your diet, or if your cells are not absorbing the iron properly.
If you noticed that you have thinning hair, it can be worth checking with your doctor first to see if you are anaemic to some degree. Iron levels can be corrected with a form of iron supplement and changes in diet.
Iron is important for hair as it contains ferritin, a stored iron that helps to produce hair cell proteins. The correct ferritin levels also maximise your hair’s anagen (growing) phase, as well as encouraging hair to grow to the correct length.
6. Other causes of hair loss
In order to discover more about the type of hair loss you may be experiencing and the solutions at your disposal, you should book a consultation for a detailed assessment.
A HAIR TRANSPLANT ON WOMAN AT THE DR. ÖZLEM BİÇER CLINIC
Deciding to get a hair transplant is a huge decision with many different aspects to consider from picking the right transplant clinic to deciding when the best time to get a transplant is. A variety of different things come into play when decided when is the right time for you to get a transplant and today we’re going to try and make that a little easier for you.
At the Dr Özlem Biçer Clinic we’re experts in both FUE and FUT hair transplant procedure.
The biggest difference between procedures on men or women is that especially for both FUE and FUT technique surgeries on women we do not shave completely the head of the patient, but only a 2-4 cm strip between the ears. This area will not be visible because it will be covered by existent hair.
Every procedure and patient is different but when the best time to get a transplant is similar for most. From the best age to get a transplant to the best time of the year to get a transplant we’ve got all the information you need.
If you would like any more information about hair loss please feel free to contact us and book a free no obligation consultation.
What is Ludwig Scale?
Patterns of female hair loss
Clinicians use the Ludwig Classification to describe female pattern hair loss. Type I is minimal thinning that can be camouflaged with hair styling techniques. Type II is characterized by decreased volume and noticeable widening of the mid-line part. Type III describes diffuse thinning, with a see-through appearance on the top of the scalp.
Tips to help women spot early signs
- Hair is shedding more than usual for more than two months – perhaps while washing it, brushing it or on your pillow and clothes. It is normal to lose up to 100 hairs a day, so if you leave more days between shampooing than you usually do, the amount of hair fall you see will be more noticeable.
- Thinner-feeling ponytail.
- Scalp becoming more visible, or hair has less volume than it used to.
- Hair does not grow as long as it used to.
- The ends are finer than usual, but it isn’t breaking. A lot of new hairs may also be growing from the scalp at different lengths.
- Your hair is gradually becoming finer at the front, crown or temple regions of the scalp.
- Excessive hair growth on other parts of the body, such as the face, chest or arms.