Hair Loss in Women – A Guide
An introduction to Women’s Hair Loss
Women’s hair loss can be caused by a number of different factors including genetics, stress or various medical issues. Hair loss can be either temporary or ongoing depending on the diagnosis. Consulting an hair loss expert is essential in order to ensure the correct diagnosis is achieved and the right course of action is taken.
Take some time to read through our guide to female hair loss, which should give you an indication of what might be causing your problem and what you can do. You can contact The Belgravia Centre any time to arrange a free one-on-one consultation with a hair loss specialist. The good news is that most women’s hair loss conditions are treatable and can be prevented or reversed. Jump to more information on hair loss treatments for women. Please note that results may vary and are not guaranteed.
Female Pattern Hair Loss
One of the most common conditions that affects women is Female Pattern Hair Loss, or Androgenetic Alopecia.
This hereditary condition causes thinning hair which can be found around the top of the head and/or the crown area, whilst the density of the hair from the sides and back of the scalp will remain unaffected.
You may notice you start to shed more hair than usual, and your parting becomes wider.
Female hair loss can also cause a receding hairline, where hair thins around the temples.
Telogen Effluvium is usually temporary. The condition causes thinning of the hair from all over the scalp and is caused by an event that shocks certain hair follicles and causes the hairs produced by these follicles to move from the growth phase to the resting phase.
As the resting phase lasts around three months before the hair sheds, hair loss will occur roughly three months after the event which caused it. Triggers will usually be either a sudden stressful event or medical occurrence, but can also include:
- starting or stopping taking oral contraceptives
- pregnancy terminations
- diet pills or other medications
Chronic Telogen Effluvium | Diffuse Hair Loss
Chronic Telogen Effluvium, also known as Diffuse Hair Loss, is similar to temporary Telogen Effluvium in its causes, the main difference being that hair loss can be prolonged. The reason for this is that the underlying cause of the hair loss has not been dealt with. In order to treat Chronic TE effectively it is important not only to treat the condition with an optimum course of treatment, but also to look at the medical issues causing the problem.
Chronic Telogen Effluvium can be caused by a number of health-related conditions including:
It is generally treated with a comprehensive hair loss treatment programme featuring minoxidil.
Traction Alopecia causes hair loss by placing constant, excessive tension on the hair shafts, often due to overuse of hair extensions, tight braids or weaves. The hair follicles become damaged, leading to hair loss generally centred around the hairline and temples, with only fine or ‘fluffy’ hairs left behind. If the cause of the Traction Alopecia is concentrated in one specific location, for example a heavy hairpiece or ponytail extension, the condition can also cause patchy hair loss in those specific areas. Due to the nature of this condition being related to damage caused by hair styling, Traction Alopecia mainly affects women, although it is also common in men who wear their hair in cornrows.
Alopecia Areata causes patchy hair loss that can come on suddenly, causing bald patches which are often circular. This hair loss condition is often triggered by stress or extreme shock and can be temporary, appearing around three months after the initial incident which caused the distress.
Alopecia Areata affects the head only with hairloss appearing anywhere on the scalp, but it can progress to more extreme cases which can involve complete hair loss of the scalp and body (see ‘Other Hair Loss Conditions’ section below).
Hair Loss Treatments for Women:
Minoxidil is the only medically-proven hair loss treatment suitable for women that has been shown to regrow hair and stop female pattern hair loss. Whilst it is licensed by the MHRA and approved by its US counterpart, the FDA for the treatment of genetic hair loss in both men and women, minoxidil is also known to be effective for other hair loss conditions.
Here at Belgravia we offer a range of minoxidil products and have seen numerous clients experience promising regrowth results by using these as part of a comprehensive hair loss treatment programme, as designed by their personal hair loss specialist to best remedy their specific condition.
Our tailored hair loss treatment courses also feature hair growth supporting products, such as the HairMax LaserBand devices, which help to boost the efficiency of the minoxidil, and Belgravia’s exclusive Hair Vitalics for Women supplements which ensure your hair gets all the nutrients it needs to grow back thick and healthy.
Other Hair Loss Conditions:
There are a number of other, less common hair loss conditions which can affect women, including the following conditions which are far more rare than those listed above.
Follicular Degeneration Syndrome (FDS) is also known as Central Progressive Alopecia and Hot Comb Alopecia. It is a form of scarring alopecia which starts as a clearly defined patch of diffuse hair loss but can then spread, spiralling out across the scalp vertex.
Alopecia Totalis and Alopecia Universalis are the most extreme forms of alopecia. Whilst Alopecia Totalis causes all hair to be lost from the head (scalp, eyelashes, eyebrows, etc), Alopecia Universalis causes complete hair loss from head to toe.
Trichotillomania is a self-inflicted condition which sees sufferers repeatedly pull, tug at or twist their hair until it comes out.
Pseudopelade is an extremely rare hair loss condition, also known as Alopecia Cicatrisata. It mostly affects women and occasionally children, causing patchy hair loss with bald patches that can still contain individual healthy hairs.
Lupus is a chronic inflammatory disease which causes the body’s immune system to turn on its own tissues and organs. Perhaps best known for the butterfly-shaped rash it can cause across the nose and cheeks, Lupus can also cause diffuse hair loss.
Cicatricial alopecia, also known as ‘scarring alopecia’, is a group of rare hair loss conditions, one of which – Frontal Fibrosing Alopecia – is specific to women. These conditions target the hair follicles directly but can also include hair loss caused by scarring following burns or radiation.