Menopause Hair Loss Diagnosis
If you are a menopausal woman experiencing hair loss, its likely occurring as a direct response to the dramatic changes in your hormones. If hair loss is a new symptom, meaning you have not otherwise dealt with a genetic predisposition to hair loss or scarring hair loss due to a medical illness, you are likely suffering from menopausal hair loss. If you are unsure, consult with your doctor to receive a proper diagnosis and treatment plan. In the interim, below are treatment options to help you maintain self-confidence and healthy hair during this time of change.
Hormones In Hair Loss
During puberty, women experience a surge in estrogen. This estrogen helps stimulate hair growth, and as a result, women typically have thicker and more lustrous hair than men.
However, as women approach menopause, there is a gradual decline in estrogen and progesterone levels. With this decline comes an increase in the activity of male hormones that the body makes.
And Introduction To Hair Loss And Menopause
Many women suffer from hair loss when going through the menopause. Every person naturally loses between 50 and 100 hairs a day. If you begin to lose more than this, you may notice areas of baldness on your scalp, clumps of hair coming out when you wash or brush your hair, or thinning of hair around the front and sides of your scalp.
Hair is made from keratin, the same material as nails. This is produced by cell structures known as hair follicles lying beneath the scalp and the hair that people wash, brush and style is actually the dead secretions from these follicles. Individual strands of hair can stay on the head for up to six years before falling out.
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Understanding Hair Loss During Perimenopause
Hair loss, or “alopecia,” refers to a condition in which a person loses more hair than normal. Typically, a hair follicle grows one quarter of an inch per month for up to six years before falling out and being replaced by another. Hair loss during perimenopause occurs when the rate of loss exceeds that of re-growth.
Largely, hair loss is popularly considered to only affect men. However, during perimenopause, nearly all women will experience some degree of hair loss or thinning. However, unlike in cases of male hair loss, the experience does not typically result in complete baldness. Generally, women will only experience hair thinning.
Because of the negative impact that hair loss can have on a woman’s self-esteem, it is wise to deal with the condition swiftly. The following information will help to illustrate the various causes.
Thinning Hair: How To Prevent Hair Loss During Menopause
Menopause is a regular, natural process that all women experience at one point or another in their lifetimes. This is a specific period of time where the female body undergoes numerous changes that are directly attributed to changing hormonal levels. Some of the common physical changes that happen during this time are hot flashes and mood swings. However, another common occurrence that is hair loss.
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How Common Is Hair Loss In Women
Many people think that hair loss only affects men. However, it is estimated that more than 50% of women will experience noticeable hair loss. The most significant cause of hair loss in women is female-pattern hair loss , which affects about one-third of susceptible women, which equals out to some 30 million women in the United States.
Natural Remedies For Hair Loss During Menopausal Period
In terms of what can be done naturally to treat thinning hair during menopause, the key behind each intervention is to lessen the menopausal symptoms themselves. While medications to treat the hormonal imbalance are commonly used, there are a series of everyday activities that one can perform in order to combat hair loss.
Staying active and incorporating regular exercise into your daily regimen will also help you immensely because they will maintain hormonal balance, which is a very good thing when it comes to hair growth.
Stress control is highly essential. Self-care activities such as breathing exercises and yoga have been proven to be effective in fighting menopausal symptoms. This proves to be very important because the reduced production of estrogen is liable to cause changes in ones nervous system. Mainly, it can cause one to experience more mood swings, depression, and anxiety.
Eating a balanced diet and remaining active is also important. A diet that is low in fat and balanced in other areas can prove to be one of the greatest defenses against hair loss. It is recommended to get a healthy amount of vegetables, fruits and whole grains in. Hair growth can also be replenished by drinking green tea or taking supplementation to replenish vitamin B6 and folic acid levels.
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Hair Loss In Black Women During The Menopause
Hair loss in women is often cause by fluctuation in hormones, such as during the menopause. Emotional stress, such as those suffered during this time of life, can also have a detrimental effect on the new growth of hair, so when hair is lost, new hair does not grow back in its place.
Often, aggressive hair styling techniques may contribute to significant hair loss and thinning. As women age, the damage caused to hair follicles over time could lead to a higher rate of hair loss amongst black women who have styled hair, versus those who allow their hair to be natural.
Menopause And Hair Loss
Everyones hair loses volume over the years, so its not uncommon for hair to be thinner by the time women approach menopause however, menopause accelerates the hair loss process.
The pattern of menopausal hair thinning is similar to the early stages of male pattern hair loss. Most commonly, the first sign of hair loss if a gradual thinning of individual strands of hair, thus loss of volume. The next steps are usually a receding pattern along the front hairline and along the temples. As this hair loss process happens, you will probably notice hair falling out in large clumps during washing, brushing, and drying.
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Preventing Menopause Hair Loss Tip #: Be Gentle With Your Hair
With your hair growing more slowly, its important to take care of the hair you already have on your head. That means being extra gentle with hot tools and dyes! Overstyling and over-processing can cause hair to break off, which will make your hair appear more thin.
One easy change you can make to help prevent menopause hair loss is to swap out your regular comb for a Wet Brush. The Wet Brush has soft silicone bristles that gently detangle your hair with far less breakage than a traditional comb.
Detangle Wet Brush, Rose
Preventing Hair Loss: Over
The simplest solution is to start using 5 percent minoxidil, which is available without a prescription, says Bruce. The trade name is Rogaine, but there are also generic versions available. This treatment is effective in about two out of three people who use it, she says.
Compliance can be an issue, because you have to use it every day to retain the benefits, she says. There are medications marketed to both men and women, but women can use the mens formulation and it is often less expensive.
Oral prescription drugs have been shown to help with female pattern hair loss. These drugs have been approved for use in other conditions, but are used by doctors off-label for FPHL, according to the American Academy of Dermatology Association .
Spironolactone, a blood pressure medication that is a diuretic can prevent hair loss from worsening and restore hair growth, according to the AAD. Other drugs block the effects of circulating androgens or lower androgen levels.
These oral medications should not be used by women who are pregnant or planning to become pregnant, according to the AAD.
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Hair Loss Due To Hormones: Will It Grow Back
Hair loss due to hormones is a reality for many people after menopause as well as during pregnancy. But will it grow back? The answer is yes, but there are also things that can help the body along.
Wash hair regularly with a mild shampoo. Treat hair gently. Dont comb or brush hair when its wet. Using the fingers to detangle is a gentler option. Putting hair up in a tight bun or ponytail can cause added stress on the hair and its follicles.
Finally, try to limit the use of hair dryers or irons on hair, as they can dry and damage it.
Here are five tips to prevent hair loss during the menopausal transition and after menopause:
What Questions Might Your Healthcare Provider Ask To Diagnose And Categorize Your Hair Loss
Your healthcare provider might ask about your habits:
- What kinds of hair products do you use?
- What kinds of hair styles do you wear?
- What types of food do you eat ?
- Do you have a habit of pulling your hair out ?
They might ask about your history:
- Has anyone in your immediate family experienced hair loss?
- Is there anything stressful going on in your life?
- What medications and supplements do you take every day?
- Has hair loss ever happened to you before?
- What foods are in your diet?
And, they might ask about your observations:
- How long have you been losing hair?
- Have you been shedding more?
- Have you noticed hair loss in places other than your scalp, like your eyebrows? Leg and arm hair?
- Does anything worsen your hair loss?
- Does anything improve your hair loss?
- Have you noticed hair loss occasionally or has it been going on continuously?
- Have you noticed if your hair growth has changed?
- Has your hair been breaking more often?
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How Common Is Hair Loss During Menopause
Believe it or not, menopause hair loss is incredibly common. Among postmenopausal women, as many as two-thirds suffer hair thinning or bald spots. Menopause hair loss is common across all ethnic groups. Thinning hair during menopause is also thought to be linked to genetics. So if you have a family member who experienced thinning hair during menopause, youre more likely to develop it too.
Common Menopause Skin And Hair Changes
These are the most common changes people can expect in their skin and hair post-menopause.
Sagging and loss of plumpness
Collagen is a protein that holds the bodys tissues together. And when estrogen drops, your skins collagen production decreases, too. Loss of collagen means the skin loses its youthful volume and tightness.
To combat this problem, many people take collagen supplements or eat high-collagen foods like bone broth. But the jury is still out on this strategy. We dont have enough controlled studies to prove that consuming collagen will help post-menopausal skin, Dr. Williams says.
Dont give up, though. You can help fight collagen loss at home with a simple facial massage. Dr. Williams recommends taking your favorite moisturizer or facial oil and giving yourself a facial rubdown each night. The massaging motion stimulates your skins collagen production, she says.
Dryness, flakiness and itching
Those pesky dark marks, sometimes called age spots, often appear after menopause and theyre hard to treat at home.
Unwanted facial hair
As hormones shift, you may notice hair on the upper lip or chin. If you want it gone, the tried-and-true methods of tweezing, waxing, hair removal creams and threading will get rid of it until it grows back.
Post-menopause acne breakouts
Hair loss and thinning
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Lifestyle And Home Remedies For Thinning Hair
If you feel self-conscious about thinning hair, there are options beyond treatments and procedures that may make hair loss less noticeable, says Bruce.
- Wear a wig, extension, or hairpiece. Some women find this to be a suitable option.
- Style your hair differently. This can make a widening part less noticeable.
- Try hair powders. These contain tiny fibers you sprinkle the powder in your hair and the fibers cling to the hair shaft, giving the appearance of fuller hair and hiding where the scalp is visible.
- Consult a hair stylist. Some stylists specialize in thinning hair.
Go For Regular Massages
Sometimes I want to call one of the fancy hair salons in Madison and say, I want a cut and color but skip the cut and color. The receptionist will say, You mean you want a shampoo with a head massage? And Ill say, Yes, exactly!
Of course, the nice thing is, we dont need to embarrass ourselves by making crazy requests to fancy hair salons we can give scalp massages to ourselves. And if your sleeping partner doesnt care, or if you sleep by yourself, then for an additional benefit, you can do what I sometimes do, which is rub rosemary oil with coconut oil into my scalp before bed, and then sleep with it in my hair/head all night. Just make sure you wash it out again before you leave in the morning.
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My Top Supplements For Hair Growth In Women Over 50 Are:
You may well have landed on this page looking for the best supplements to help with hair loss during menopause. So let’s start here.
But before I give you my favorite supplements… Here’s how supplements fit into the big picture when it comes to reversing hair loss:
If there’s an underlying hormonal issue causing the hair loss, the supplements will help but not that much. Getting to the underlying hormonal imbalance is what will turn things around and start your hair growing again – then the supplements will just help it to grow faster.
Here are my favorite supplements for women over 50. Each of these can help support thicker, fuller, shinier hair this year and in every year to come.
Be sure to watch the video to learn more about why I recommend considering each one of these!!