The Most Common Causes of Hair Loss for Women

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Hair loss is devastating for anyone, but can be especially difficult for women as long, thick hair is a coveted feature in today’s society. For the average person, losing 1-200 strands of hair per day is completely normal. Unfortunately, by the time a women notices abnormal hair loss, she’s likely already lost about 50% of her hair. So who does it effect and how does it happen?

One common form of hair loss for women is telogen effluvium, which is typically caused by high fever, childbirth, certain medications such as antidepressants or blood pressure medicines, blood thinners, hormones, iron deficiency, and crash diets. What happens is an increased amount of hair follicles go into a rest phase, instead of a growth phase that is considered normal.

Stress can also be a major contributor with hair loss typically occurring a few months after some sort of trauma or stressful event. This can even happen following a big surgical procedure your body is trying to recover from. Luckily, this form of hair loss typically stops and full density is achieved after the hair has time to grow and even out.

Hair breakage is different in that the full strand is not lost at the base but may break from excessive blow-drying, brushing, or frequently wearing tight braids. Certain hair products or more time in between rough hair treatments can reduce breakage drastically.

Alopecia Areota effects about 2% of the population and is an autoimmune disorder where patches of scalp become completely bald. This can even happen to body hair. There is no treatment that works in all cases but steroid injections or oral medications can help. Other treatment options include Rogaine, Anthralin cream or ointment, wigs, or topical immunotherapy.

The most common cause for hair loss in genetic, most commonly referred to as female pattern baldness. The medical term is androgenic alopecia and is the result of exposure to certain male sex hormones or androgens (testosterone being one of them). It is the same cause for men with male pattern baldness, which is also hereditary.

Treatments for female pattern hair loss include topical Rogaine, prescription medication, micro-needling with PRP (Platelet Rich Plasma), or hair transplant surgery. Some women experiencing female pattern hair loss may be able to cover thinning areas with creative hair styles or clip-ins.

It’s important to seek the advice of a hair restoration specialist if you are experiencing excess hair loss to determine the best course of action. 


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Salt Lake City Facial Plastic Surgeon