Whilst diffuse hair loss can affect both sexes, it is more common in women; in fact it is the most common form of female hair loss. This type of hair loss involves increased shedding of the hair and thinning all over the scalp. The hair root shrinks after being deprived of nutrients or ‘building blocks’ for healthy hair such as keratin, vitamins and amino acids. This causes hair to enter the telogen (resting) phase. More hair begins to fall out than grow back, resulting in the appearance of thinning hair.
There are a number of factors which can affect hair growth; some of these, such as changes in hormone levels, are unique to women. Contraceptives can cause hormonal imbalances that can lead to diffuse hair loss, whilst stress, pregnancy, poor diet, thyroid problems and even weight loss can all have an impact on hair growth rates. The good news is that diffuse hair loss linked to your weight loss, a thyroid problem or pregnancy is usually temporary. Once the imbalance has been redressed, hair will begin to grow back.
Diffuse hair loss can also be hereditary and two enzymes, 5-a reductase (found in both men and women) and aromatase (found mostly in women) are thought to be responsible. 5-a reductase is responsible for reacting with the hormone testosterone, producing DHT. This hormone causes affected hair follicles to shrink and eventually disappear. In women, an additional enzyme, aromatase, is responsible for producing female hormones which counteract DHT. This could explain why diffuse hair loss and thinning hair affects women in different ways. In men, hair loss usually starts at the front of the head and hairline, whereas hair loss in women tends to distribute itself across the scalp.
Diffuse hair loss is normally able to be treated successfully and if you are experiencing this type of hair loss it is important to see a hair loss specialist straight away. Your hair loss could be linked to a serious medical condition, stress or medication such as blood thinners, blood pressure medication or oral contraceptives. It could even be caused by your diet and lifestyle.
An expert diagnosis and specialist hair loss treatment programme is the best course of action to prevent further hair loss and help your hair to grow back full and healthy.
The Belgravia Centre is a world-renowned group of a hair loss clinic in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation from anywhere in the world for home-use treatment.
View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world's largest gallery of hair growth photos and demonstrates the level of success that so many of Belgravia's patients achieve.