Treatment For Hair Loss
Most hair loss does not need treatment and is either:
- temporary and it’ll grow back
- a normal part of getting older
Hair loss caused by a medical condition usually stops or grows back once you’ve recovered.
There are things you can try if your hair loss is causing you distress. But most treatments are not available on the NHS, so you’ll have to pay for them.
No treatment is 100% effective.
Diffuse Thinning In Girls
Depending on the cause, males and females can typically lose their hair in very different ways . As we saw, boys often show their first sign of hair loss at the hairline and temples.
While women can also recede in the temples, their hair loss is more often diffuse. In other words, they retain a relatively intact hairline but thin all over the top of the head. The main sign of this is a wide part.
At first, such thinning can go unnoticed. By the time girls realize that their hair is thinner and the part wider, they might have lost most of the hair on their head. Unlike males, however, it is extremely rare for girls and women to go completely bald.
Whats Hair Loss In Women
Hair loss in women is just that when a woman experiences unexpected, heavy loss of hair. Generally, humans shed between 50 and 100 single hairs per day. Hair shedding is part of a natural balance some hairs fall out while others grow in. When the balance is interrupted when hair falls out and less hair grows in hair loss happens. Hair loss is different than hair shedding. The medical term for hair loss is alopecia.
Hair grows on almost all of your skin surfaces not the palms of your hands, soles of your feet, lips or eyelids. Light, fine, short hair is called vellus hair. Terminal/androgenic hair is thicker, darker and longer.
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Dermatologists Can Distinguish Between Hair Loss And Hair Shedding
If you are concerned by the amount of hair falling out, you dont need to suffer in silence. You can turn to a dermatologist for help. These doctors specialize in diagnosing and treating the skin, hair, and nails. A dermatologist can tell you whether you have hair loss or excessive hair shedding. Some people have both.
A dermatologist also can find the cause or causes and tell you what you can expect. Effective treatments options are available for many types of hair loss. The sooner treatment begins, the better the prognosis.
Your Nails Feel Brittle
Iron deficiency, which is considered a type of anemia, happens when the body can’t produce enough healthy red blood cells. If a person lacks them, they may experience side effects like brittle nails and hair loss, Dr. Shapiro said.
Iron deficiency can also make a person feel constantly tired and weak. Other symptoms include chest pain and cold hands and feet, according to the Mayo Clinic.
Iron supplements can help treat the condition, but a doctor might also ask what medications you’re taking since some antibiotics can interfere with iron absorption.
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Possible Causes Of Excessive Hair Loss In Female Teenagers
Some of the common causes of hair loss in teenage girls could be:
While some of these causes may be corrected by taking the measures mentioned above, some might need medical attention.
Beware Of Big Promises
There are numerous devices and products that are marketed as effective hair loss treatments, but many of them do not work. Beware of all of the false advertising associated with these products. If a cure for hair loss in women sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Before-and-after pictures may have been doctored to be misleading. How do you know if a hair loss treatment really works? Ask your dermatologist about any treatment you are considering. Look on the FDA and Federal Trade Commission websites to search for approved medical devices and drugs.
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How To Combat Hair Fall Post Covid
If hair fall is alarming, it is advisable to consult a good dermatologist for hair fall treatments. If the hair loss is accompanied by itching or flakiness in the scalp, then go to a hair specialist for specific treatments. The dermatologists at the Esthetic Clinics recommend exercising, de-stressing, and eating a well-balanced diet to combat hair fall. Here are some tips suggested by Dr. Kapoor to get rid of hair fall:
Say goodbye to stress: Relax, take a deep breath, maintain a healthy lifestyle, and let the recovery take its course. The sooner you say goodbye to stress the soon hair shedding with stop. Include few minutes of mediation and breathing exercises in the daily schedule.
Switch to a rainbow diet: Include loads of colourful seasonal vegetables and fruits such as spinach, lettuce, oranges, figs, and capsicum in your daily diet.
Make an exercise routine: Try a mix of cardio, strength training, and yoga. Getting a good night’s sleep is also important.
Avoid hair styling productsand treatments: Follow a gentle hair care routine and use products that suit your hair type.
Take supplements: Iron and Vitamin D supplements may help but take them after consulting your doctor for restoring hair health.
Intense Emotional Or Physical Stress
When you’re experiencing something stressful or traumaticnot your average day-to-day stress, but something big and life-altering like a divorce, a death in the family, a significant job change, or a big moveyou may experience a temporary halt in hair growth as your body puts its resources toward getting you through said big event.
“Hairs dont all grow at the same rate,” Dr. Schlosser explains. “Some are growing, some are resting, and some are actively being shed. When you have these conditions, your body halts hair growth, and then things get restarted and all these hairs that have been halted start to get pushed out at the same time.” The same thing can happen with physical stress and trauma, like having a big operation, being hospitalized, or even losing a significant amount of weight very quickly.
Usually this type of hair shedding is temporary. But if it bothers you, check in with a dermatologist to learn more about styling changes and products you can use to make your hair look and feel fuller.
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Is Hair Loss In Women Different Than Men
Women lose hair on an inherited basis, too, but female pattern hair loss tends to be more diffuse, with less likelihood of the crown and frontal hairline being lost. Although some women may notice hair thinning as early as their 20s, the pace of hair loss tends to be gradual, often taking years to become obvious to others. There seems to be a normal physiologic thinning that comes with age and occurs in many women in their early to mid-30s. More women have underlying causes of hair loss than men. These include treatable conditions like anemia and thyroid disease and polycystic ovary syndrome . These conditions are diagnosed by blood tests along with a historical and physical evidence. Although a few studies have suggested that baldness may be inherited through the mother’s family genes, these theories require further testing. Current studies are inconclusive. Although not indicated for female pattern balding, spironolactone has had some success in treating this condition.
While stories about hats choking off follicles or long hair pulling on the roots may be more folklore, repeat hair trauma like tightly woven hair pulled back and consistent friction can potentially worsen or cause localized hair loss in some individuals. Individuals who pull their hair tightly back in a rubber band can develop a localized hair loss at the front of the scalp.
Hair loss “myths” of special concern to women
How Can I Regrow Any Hair Ive Lost
You may have heard of minoxidil , which is a topical medication that can help promote hair growth.
Its available in liquid or foam form in concentrations of 2% and 5%. Researchers suggest minoxidil works by increasing blood flow to affected areas, which delivers more nutrients that encourage new hair growth. This treatment may also shorten the resting phase of hair follicles so they switch to the growth cycle sooner .
Higher concentrations of minoxidil are more effective at regrowing hair, but can also cause more side effects, which include itching and irritation at the application site . While 5% minoxidil has been approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for use in men, its not typically recommended to women as it can cause excessive hair growth. Still, a healthcare provider may decide the benefits outweigh the risks and recommend 5% minoxidilas long as youre closely monitored for side effects.
If you have telogen effluvium, products like minoxidil can encourage hair regrowth, but addressing any underlying health conditions or nutrient deficiencies is generally the best solution to the problem . A healthcare professional may suggest a healthy eating plan or supplement regimen if your hair loss is caused by a protein or iron deficiency.
If your hair has started falling out suddenly, your best bet is to talk to a healthcare provider. They can help you determine whats causing the sudden hair loss and correct any underlying issues that may be contributing.
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Thinning Hair Following Pregnancy
Other hormonal imbalances can also lead to hair loss, especially the wildly fluctuating hormones that occur following pregnancy and childbirth. It takes time after pregnancy for hormone levels to return to normal, so it’s not at all uncommon for post-partum moms to notice thinning hair or even patches of baldness. This often occurs about three months after babys arrival. Don’t worry as the rest of your body recovers, so will your hair follicles. The hair loss is only temporary your hair will grow back.
You Have Polycystic Ovary Syndrome
Polycystic ovary syndrome is another imbalance in male and female sex hormones. An excess of androgens can lead to ovarian cysts, weight gain, a higher risk of diabetes, changes in your menstrual period, infertility, as well as hair thinning. Because male hormones are overrepresented in PCOS, women may also experience more hair on the face and body.
Treating PCOS can correct the hormone imbalance and help reverse some of these changes. Treatments include diet, exercise, and potentially birth control pills, as well as specific treatment to address infertility or diabetes risk.
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Treatments For Hair Loss In Teenage Girls
Some of the common treatments doctors use to stop hair loss in teenage girls are:
The doctor may prescribe anti-androgens to treat androgenic alopecia as well as polycystic ovary syndrome in females as their body makes more androgens .
Hair loss is normal in teenagers, and can usually be addressed by a healthy diet and lifestyle. But if hair loss is due to a medical condition or hereditary, and you notice too much thinning of hair or bald patches, then that requires treatment of the underlying condition.
Hair Shedding Common After Major Health Event
Hair loss after COVID-19 probably isn’t caused by the virus attacking hair follicles, doctors say. Instead, they think it’s most likely a reaction to the physiological and emotional stress brought on by the disease.
“Anytime you have a shock to your system, it can shunt the hair into a shedding phase, said Shoshana Marmon, M.D., clinical assistant professor of dermatology and director of clinical research in the Department of Dermatology at New York Medical College.
The technical name for the condition is telogen effluvium. It usually resolves on its own about six to nine months after it starts, Marmon said.
Lauren Ploch, M.D., a board-certified dermatologist in Augusta, Georgia, and Aiken, South Carolina, said hair loss is common in patients after other stressful events such as major surgery and childbirth. As with COVID, it usually shows up a few months after the inciting event.
“The reason this happens is that our bodies, when under stress, devote resources to functions that are physiologically more important, Ploch said. Your body is focused on healing and repairing itself, and not focused on hair growth.
In the most severe cases, patients lose as much as a third of their hair, Ploch said.
Dermatologists are tracking COVID-19 survivors who continue to have symptoms, called long-haulers, to find out for sure if what they are experiencing is telogen effluvium or something related to ongoing illness or inflammation.
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Hair Cycle Of Growth And Rest
Like your skin and nails, your hair goes through a finely tuned cycle of growth and rest. There are 3 phases in a hair cycle:
- In the first stage, your scalp hair is continually growing. During this anagen phase, your hair grows about 12cm per month. About 90% of your hair is in this stage at any one time. It lasts between 25 years.
- The second stage, called the catagen phase, is when growth stops. About 13% of your scalp hair is in this phase at any one time. It lasts for 23 weeks.
- The third stage, the telogen phase, is a resting phase that lasts between 14 months. About 10% of your scalp hair is in this phase at any one time.