Hair loss is often considered to be a problem that only affects men. However, it is also an issue that women of all ages can experience. If you feel you may be suffering from abnormal hair loss, then it may be time to track how much hair is lost after you shower, when you wake up each morning, and when you brush or style your hair.
The average individual loses between 50 to 100 hairs each day. If you’re losing significantly more than this, it can be an indication of an underlying medical condition or genetic hair loss. Regardless of the cause, losing hair can be very distressing for women.
If you have thinning or bald areas and the hair isn’t growing back, then it may be time to get help from a hair restoration specialist. But what causes hair loss in women, and what kinds of treatments are available?
Hair Loss Causes in Women
Genetics: Thinning hair and female pattern baldness may be caused by genetics, which is experienced as a progressive and gradual reduction in the thickness of each strand and the amount of hair overall. Men typically lose hair on the crown of their hair, while women are more likely to experience thinning hair throughout the scalp. Inherited female pattern baldness and thinning may occur on the crown and typically appears as a widening center part that doesn’t alter the hairline.
Trauma and Intense Stress: Physical or emotional trauma can cause significant hair loss and create bald patches. Hair loss caused by intense stress often self-corrects and grows back within three to four months after the stressor. But for some women, it can become a chronic disorder. Burns, scars, and wounds to the scalp may cause uneven bald patches, as well.
Dramatic Weight Loss: Women who experience a significant amount of weight loss in a very short time may experience thinning hair.
Medical Conditions: Women may experience hair loss due to anemia, vitamin deficiencies, thyroid disorders, and other medical conditions. Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) is a hormonal disorder in women that might cause thicker facial or body hair or female pattern baldness. Also, Alopecia hair loss may be caused by thyroid disease or thyroid medication.
Hormonal Changes: Hormonal changes during pregnancy or menopause may cause female hair loss.
Skin Conditions: Itchy scalp and skin conditions like psoriasis, dermatitis, and rosacea may cause hair loss.
Traction Alopecia: Tightly pulled ponytails or buns over an extended time can create hair loss for some women. Avoid snug hairstyles to prevent further hair loss while you evaluate transplant options.
Reversing Hair Loss
To start your hair restoration journey, request a consultation at a hair loss diagnostic center that offers both medical and surgical answers for hair loss in women. A board-certified plastic surgeon will assess the cause of your hair loss and recommend the best treatment options.
Hair loss caused by a medical condition or hormone imbalance might be reversed when the underlying problem is corrected. Women with eczema, psoriasis, or other skin conditions should address the underlying cause. Women with permanent hair loss caused by female pattern baldness, trauma, traction alopecia, burns, scars, genetics, and other causes may benefit from a hair transplant.
A hair specialist will perform an examination, complete medical tests, and/or order bloodwork to determine the cause behind your hair loss. If you qualify for hair transplant surgery, it is easiest to conceal small bald patches or smaller areas of thinning hair that won’t require a large number of donor follicles.
You must have a sufficient amount of healthy, thick donor hair to achieve adequate coverage, but your specialist may recommend other options. A consultation is the best way to learn about custom hair regrowth options.
What is Hair Transplant Surgery?
Hair transplantation can enhance hair density for a fuller, more youthful appearance. Transplants may be unsuccessful when an underlying medical condition is creating the patient’s hair loss, so it is important to have your health assessed and any medical causes ruled out before proceeding with a transplant.
Hair transplant surgery involves relocating small hair-bearing follicle grafts from a donor site to a thinning or bald area. FUE (follicular unit extraction) and FUG (follicular unit grafting) are specialized procedures performed to achieve natural results within an appropriate range based on your age and other features.
Your hair transplant surgeon should be a board-certified plastic surgeon and a member of the International Society of Hair Restoration Surgery. The traditional strip technique is typically the preferable choice for women, but the appropriate option will be determined during the initial consultation.
Am I a Candidate for Hair Restoration Surgery?
Women over the age of 30 who have been suffering from thinning hair or female pattern hair loss for five or more years may be ideal candidates for hair transplantation. Hair restoration surgery may be beneficial for filling in thinning areas or patches of lost hair, but specific criteria must be met for a successful transplant. Surgeons typically do not perform hair restoration on patients under the age of 18 because their hair growth patterns may not be fully determined.
A successful hair transplant relies on healthy hair on the sides or back of the head. Women who do not have a robust donor site may discuss other options with their surgeon. Some women choose to increase the amount of hair in their donor areas with platelet-rich plasma treatments (PRP) before having a hair transplant surgery.
Schedule a Rhinoplasty Consultation
Dr. Anthony Bared specializes in hair transplant surgery and is a board-certified otolaryngology-head and neck surgeon, a board-certified plastic surgeon, and a member of the International Alliance of Hair Restoration Surgery. Call 800-943-7295 or visit the Facial Plastic Surgery Miami website to schedule a hair transplant consultation with Dr. Bared M.D., F.A.C.S. at his Miami office.