Most people have the conception that genetic hair loss like Pattern Baldness is exclusively targeted at men only. So you think that if you are a woman you are safe from this wrath of God? Think again.
Although almost 40% of men will start to face with some receding hairline by their early 20s and 30s, there are a lot of hair loss conditions that can specifically affect women. Male Pattern Baldness is caused by the accumulation of Dihydro-Testosterone (DHT) at the hair follicles, causing shrinkage and reducing the hair growth cycle. DHT is an advanced male hormone formed with another lower level male hormone, Testosterone that binds with the enzyme 5 Alpha Reductase. The combination of these two creates DHT, which are also important for male characteristics. Needless to say, DHT is also present in females, but in much small quantities.
One of the main protection women has against Pattern Baldness generated by DHT is the female hormone Estrogen. This hormone primarily found in females, acts a barrier to block creation and the domination of DHT. It is also responsible for beautiful and thick hair found in most women. However, during some events in your life, these hormones can be unstable or reduced significantly allowing exposure of the hair follicles to DHT. As you are much more sensitive to the effects of DHT, your hair loss condition might accelerate faster than men.
One of the most common hair loss conditions that exclusively affect women is
Postpartum Hair Loss
Usually during pregnancy, your hormones level will fluctuate to adjust with the new baby. Your body will produce extra hormone Estrogen during this period. As Estrogen nourishes hair, expect your hair to look radiant and better during pregnancy. Estrogen also prolongs your hair growing phase, also known as the ANAGEN phase, thus reducing normal hair loss throughout this time frame.
However, after giving birth, your Estrogen levels will usually tumble below normal levels for a short period. This condition is totally normal because after birth, your body is exhausted and needs to shut down to recuperate. With low levels of Estrogen coupled with post pregnancy Stress, your hair will usually look pale and lifeless. In some more severe cases, you might experience a period of heavy hair shedding occurring 3 months after pregnancy. This is normal due the drop of your hormone levels and additional stress pushes more of the hair follicles to the resting phase (TELOGEN). This condition can sometimes be known as Telogen Effluvium.
However, it’s safe to say that this condition is usually temporary and you can expect your hair to grow back to normal pace after 6 months. So if you are facing which such condition, do not panic as it happens to a huge percentage of other new mothers too.
If you are looking for alternatives to instantly improve your condition, you can always try
- Hair concealers Hair concealers like Toppik and Couvre can temporary provide cover for your balding area. It’s effective and usually mess free.
- Cutting your hair short By cutting your hair short, you can reduce the appearance of hair loss and thinning hair by focusing more on your facial characteristics.
- Taking vitamin B supplements Vitamin B Complex that contains Biotin and B12 are essential for healthy looking hair.
- Volumizing shampoos Shampoos that contain volumizing effects like Wheat Grain Protein and Soya Protein can increase your hair’s volume.
- Wearing caps and scarves One of the best solution for you if you are facing with Postpartum Hair Loss, just grab a cap and go out!
All these remedies can provide you with a temporary relieve of your hair loss condition. As your hair should grow back over time, there is no need to look for drastic measures like medical treatments or considering a hair transplant. Just keep cool and relax, as stress itself can further affect your condition.
If you are looking for answers and solutions to hair loss problems related to women, please feel free to seek it out from my Hair Loss in Women page.