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The Truth About Female Hair Loss

Jan 10, 2008
It's not a crime to be a lady and to be experiencing hair loss. This condition is common among women today. More women than we actually think are suffering from female hair loss. This and many other facts of female hair loss should be properly understood.

Social Stereotype

The main reason why we rarely hear of or even imagine women suffering from female hair loss is because of the prevailing social stereotype. Of course, short hairstyles are now socially acceptable for females. Baldness however is not. It is quite common for us to think that women should have thick, luxurious hair regardless of age and hairstyle. This is probably why those with female hair loss simply prefer to keep mum about their conditions. The truth is however, 1 in 4 women suffer from baldness. Female hair loss may therefore be as common as male hair loss.

Hair Loss Myths

Frequent hair treatments, hair styling and coloring, according to enduring belief, are some of the most common causes of hair loss. Frequent handling of hair in these ways may really result in hair breakage near the scalp. Female hair loss of this kind however is not permanent. Hair will eventually grow back and the worst that may result in over treating hair would be hair dryness and probably split ends.

Other Causes

Loss of hair in female can happen for various reasons. The most commonly believed causes of female hair loss however may actually be responsible for only 5% of hair loss cases. These causes include alopecia areata, telogen effluvium, traction alopecia and trichotillomania.

Alopecia areata is an autoimmune disorder in which patches of hair are lost resulting in bald patches and/ or diffuse thinning. Telogen effluvium is another condition in which numerous hair strands shift from the growing phase into the falling phase. Traction alopecia is the result of tight hairstyles like ponytails, buns and braids in which large amounts of hair are pulled off. This may eventually lead to scarring alopecia in which areas of the scalp become scarred. Trichotillomania is a serious psychological condition which is characterized by chronic hair pulling which can lead to bald areas.

Most Common Cause

One common cause of baldness in women is hormonal changes. Estrogen level imbalances, an over or under active thyroid gland, child birth, menopause and hormonal therapies may be the culprits in female hair loss.

Difference with Male Hair Loss

The age for women to suffer from loss of hair is different from that of men. Women may suffer from hair loss as soon as they hit their early twenties. Most women who suffer from hair loss also do not frequently develop bald patches.

In women, balding is usually diffused and with obvious thinning only on certain areas of the head such as the back or the top of the scalp or on the front hairline. Having severe and wide bald spots may be a sign that you need to see your doctor.
About the Author
Is there a link between your diet and hair loss? Find more information about baldness and female hair loss.
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