What You Need To Know About Hair Loss
If your condition is not due to a hormonal imbalance, your doctor may recommend treatment that includes topical corticosteroids. Topical corticosteroids may lead to red or puffy face and can reduce your immune systems ability to fight infection. In some cases, fungal infections, such as tinea capitis, can lead to hair loss. Fortunately, you can take antifungal medications to treat it and get a full head of hair again.
Hair loss is a normal part of aging, and there is no need to worry. In fact, it is perfectly normal for most people to lose a bit of hair every day, and it will grow back eventually. Some men and women experience hair loss as they age, while others simply have a genetic predisposition to the problem. If youre experiencing a lack of hair, you may have a weakened immune system, which can lead to hair loss.
For more severe cases of hair loss, a dermatologist may recommend a hair transplant. This procedure involves a surgeon removing plugs of hair from your scalp. It may take several hours and multiple sessions to complete the process. Its an invasive treatment, and may not be the best option for everyone. Your doctor will need to examine your scalp to determine the cause of your condition. In addition to a healthy diet, your doctor may recommend taking supplements of various vitamins and minerals.
Pfenninger: Effects Of Menopause On Hair
With menopause, the ovaries cease producing estrogen, the female hormone. This leads to many changes in the body including both increased and decreased hair growth. Hair growth, whether more or less, can impact self esteem due to the effect on one’s appearance. It is important to be aware that excessive hair growth, both pre-menopausal and post-menopausal, can also signal abnormal endocrine function or a tumor, although most changes are normal and not worrisome.
Seven hundred and fifty-eight post-menopausal females aged 45 years or older were studied for the changes in their hair patterns. They were all of northern European origin.Twenty-five percent experienced generalized scalp hair loss. Nine percent found that they lost hair on the front of their scalp. In all, forty-one percent of women experienced some form of hair loss. As they continued to age, there was more hair loss over the entire body. Only 39 percent noted excessive growth on their chin and upper lip.
Other body hair is not as sensitive to testosterone. Consequently, overall, women lose sexual and body hair after menopause.
Radiation Treatment And Hair Loss
Radiation therapy uses a high-energy beam to damage quickly growing cells in your body. The goal is to target cancer cells, but some normal cells get damaged as well.
Radiation only causes hair loss on the particular part of the body treated. If radiation is used to treat the breast, there is no hair loss on your head. But there might be loss of hair around the nipple, if you have hair there.
Radiation to the brain, used to treat breast cancer that has spread to the brain, can cause hair loss on your head. Depending on the dose of radiation, your hair may be patchier when it grows back or it may not grow back.
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What To Do About Facial Hair
Nothing is a totally legitimate choice here. Theres nothing dangerous about a few extra chin hairs. But if they bother you, there are ways to get rid of menopausal facial hair, or at least minimize its appearance so you feel more comfortable and confident with your appearance.
Ditch the magnifying mirror. Most of the time, the facial hair that seems so obvious to you isn’t to others. If youre using a magnifying mirror to apply makeup or get our contact lenses in, it may be making the hairs look worse to you. Use a regular mirror and honestly assess the situation. You might even want to ask a trustworthy friend for her opinion. This can help you decide how much time, effort, and money you want to invest in a remedy.
Pull em out. If you only have a few, grab a tweezer and pluck them out. For more hair, waxing or threading may be more practical solutions. Threading uses thin, doubled thread pulled tight and rolled over the face to remove hairs. Both options should be done by an expert to prevent ingrown hairs. And contrary to any tales you may have heard, plucking via any method will not cause hair to grow back darker or coarser.
Shave it off. You may balk a little at the idea of shaving your face, but its a cheap, effective remedy. Plan on shaving in or just after a shower when hair is softer and use a sharp razor to prevent rashes or ingrown hairs. While hair will grow back more quickly than when you pluck it, it wont grow back darker or coarser.
More Than A Bad Hair Day
For many women, our hair is something we control we cut it, style it and choose how to wear it. It is an expression of ourselves, our personality and our image. If we lose a lot of hair, we may feel less feminine, less in control and it can affect our self-esteem.
The average age of the menopause is around fifty and in the months or years leading up to this, some women notice a change in hair pattern. Very commonly, the volume and condition of the hair appears to worsen, with some women noticing that hair does not grow as much as previously. More hair seems to come out in the basin when washing and hair brushes soon fill up as loose hairs are brushed away. Some women will go on to experience a more profound hair loss, with thinning at the crown of the head, the sides or more general hair thinning all over the head. This is described as Female pattern hair loss . A complete loss of hair, as seen in men who sometimes go bald, is much rarer in women and is usually caused by a medical condition or by medical treatment such as chemotherapy.
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Hair Loss And Your Job
There tends to be a lot less stigma with being open about a cancer diagnosis in the workplace than there was even a generation ago. If youre planning to continue working or to job hunt during treatment, youre likely to find that many colleagues are understanding about what youre going through.
Still, its up to you to decide how comfortable you feel telling your colleagues or others you interact with in your job about your diagnosis and treatment. If youve lost your hair and you want to maintain your privacy at work, you might choose to wear a wig that looks as close as possible to your natural hair and to otherwise conceal your hair loss . If youre not as concerned about privacy, you might wear a scarf or choose not to hide your hair loss.
How you decide to handle hair loss at work might also depend on your job role and industry. For instance, if you work in a field in which your appearance is front and center more, you might decide that concealing your hair loss on the days you go into work helps you feel more confident.
For more info about navigating your work life during breast cancer treatment, including what to do if you think youve experienced discrimination, see Breast Cancer and Your Job.
Written by: Jen Uscher, contributing writer
This page was developed with contributions from the following experts:
Nik Georgopoulos, Ph.D., associate professor in cell biology, Paxman Scalp Cooling Research Centre, School of Applied Sciences, University of Huddersfield, UK
When To Talk To Your Doctor
Along with seeing a doctor if you notice extreme hair loss, its also good to consult with him or her if you notice hair loss after taking a new medication. Your doctor may be able to adjust the dosage so that you dont experience this side effect, or find another medication that doesnt affect your overall hair growth.
Its also good to consider seeing a dermatologist if you have an overly dry, flaking, or itchy scalp. Note the shampoos and other such hair care products you use during your visit. Your hair loss may be due to a skin irritation, allergy, or other such cause, and not menopause.
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Your Male Hormones Are Out Of Balance
A sudden increase in hair growth or loss in women is often caused by an imbalance of male hormones which are naturally present in both men and women in differing amounts. If you get a boost in testosterone, for example, excess hair can be the result.
Its called hirsutisma condition of unwanted male-pattern hair growth in women, says , professor of medicine at the University of Colorado Medical Center in Denver and chief of endocrinology at the Denver Veterans Administration Medical Center. The male-pattern part of the diagnosis means hair above the belly button, on the upper chest, or on the upper back. More than eight hairs around a single nipple is considered abnormal in women and would meet the definition of hirsutism.
Much like male-pattern excess hair, male pattern baldness in women is also a sign of shifting male hormone levels. When estrogen levels decline during menopause and, as a consequence, testosterone rises, many women find that the hair on their heads thins while their facial hair becomes coarser. You might even find an errant hair on your chin. Initially horrifying, yes, says Dr. Wierman, but all perfectly normal.
Does Leg Hair Stop Growing At A Certain Age
We all know that getting bald once we get old is kinda scary, yet theres no way that we can stop it. Somehow, we still want to have that healthy and volumed hair. However, all these will be gone in our later years. And its inevitable.
But did you know that not only on the head we can experience hair loss? This can happen on our legs and in many parts of our body too.
There are a lot of reasons why a person experiences hair loss. But one thing is for sure, those unwanted hair problems that you have in your early years, it will not be forever.
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How Can I Stop Hair Loss During Menopause
So what are the ways you can do to help this? Look at hormonal balance. As you start in the peri-menopause, if your hormones are starting to change, then you know that that’s the sort of start of the whole menopause, peri-menopause scenario.
So you can look at balancing hormones by things like Menopause Support, have plenty of fermented soya foods in your diet. Look at things that maybe Black Cohosh as well, if they’re appropriate. You could start to eat fermented soya foods, and these are foods that are eaten on a regular basis in the Far East, so it would be things like tempeh, and miso, and maybe some kinds of fermented tofu as well.
So you can get these particular foods in health food shops and maybe some of the oriental supermarkets as well.
When To Talk With A Doctor
If youre feeling ill when you begin to notice hair loss, or if your scalp feels painful or irritated, its a good idea to check in with your doctor. Theyll help you get to the root of the problem.
Before taking a prescription drug or undergoing a medical procedure, youll also need to check in with your dermatologist or primary care physician.
Hair can stop growing or grow slowly for a variety of reasons including age, genetics, hormones, or stress. You may notice your hair stops growing in one spot or seems to be growing slowly on one side.
There are plenty of treatment options for slow-growing hair, including:
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When To See Your Doctor About Your Body Hair
While having body hair changes can indicate an underlying health issue, it doesnt always mean that something is off. Most patients that I see with excessive facial or body hair are a variant of normal, Dr. Goldenberg says.
However, if you are developing new, changing, or bothersome hair on your face, jaw, chin, or chest, make sure to touch base with your dermatologist to understand if there is any underlying medical issue, Dr. Zeichner says. Getting checked out can rule out potential problems and help get you started on any necessary treatments.
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Hair Loss During Menopausal Transition
Hair loss during the menopausal transition can be just as dramatic as menopausal hair loss. The two are both related to the same changes in hormone levels. The menopausal transition is the time leading up to menopause and can last several years. During the menopausal transition, fluctuating hormones can cause some of the same symptoms typically associated with menopause.
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Scarves Hats And Turbans
Many people find that scarves and hats are the easiest, most comfortable, and versatile solution for managing hair loss from breast cancer treatment. Scarves and hats can hide your hair loss, help keep you warm, protect you from the sun, and they can be stylish and fun to wear. Learn more about Scarves, Hats, and Turbans for managing treatment-related hair loss.
Your Medication May Have Side Effects
Certain medications can have a direct impact on your body hair, Dr. Goldenberg says. Some, including certain antidepressants and anti-coagulants, can cause temporary hair loss, usually through a process called telogen effluvium, a hair shedding condition that can also happen after pregnancy, major surgery, drastic weight loss, or extreme stress.
Other meds can cause hair growth, including a boost in body hair. Those include testosterone, danazol , phenytoin , and glucocorticoids , he says. In most cases, the hair changes are not permanent and will end once you stop using the medication.
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The production of the “female hormones” oestrogen and progesterone drops as the ovaries slow down, but so does the production of other hormones such as testosterone.
One of the clearest signs of ageing is changes to the hair on your head and body, which may thin or turn grey as hair follicles begin to produce less of the colour pigment, known as melanin.
However, there is no hard or fast rule for how quickly people age or how their internal changes will show externally on their bodies.
Nearly everyone has some hair loss with ageing the rate of hair growth slows as some hair follicles stop producing new hair altogether.
Many women will also notice their facial hair getting coarser, especially on the chin or upper lip. Sigh.
But, will you really go bald down there?
“I’m not aware of any scientific evidence in that area,” Professor Martha Hickey, who works in Obstetrics and Gynaecology at Royal Women’s and Mercy hospitals, told Mamamia.
“I’m not sure of any scientific research that has tracked pubic hair through menopause and beyond.
“Does it matter?”
Well, no. Not at all. But for some women who’ve carefully tended their ‘lady gardens’ for a lifetime, the thought of never pruning it again might come as a relief.
As one Mumsnet user quipped:
“But doesn’t it relocate to one’s chin? Not a perk!”
So, in conclusion, you may well notice some changes to the hair on your head and other parts of the body, but there’s no hard and fast rule.
Can You Regrow Pubic Hair After Menopause
Pubic hair and hair on the body doesnt usually grow back after the menopause, this is due to levels of oestrogen and progesterone remaining low as we continue to age.
Not everyone will lose their pubic hair. If you keep your pubic and body hair after the menopause, it will likely turn grey, just like the hair on your head. And you may also notice more hair growing in other areas, such as the chin and face.
Taking steps such as ensuring you are hydrated, eating a well-balanced diet, reducing stress, and incorporating plenty of movement into your daily life can help minimise the effects of menopausal hair loss.
And remember, although hair loss, including pubic hair loss, is a common symptom of the menopause, but it can also be a sign of other conditions. If you are concerned, you should always consult your doctor or a medical professional.
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Your Estrogen Levels Recently Changed
The amount of estrogen in your body can also impact your hair. When estrogen levels are high, hair tends to be thicker than usual When theyre low, it can cause hair loss, says Joshua Zeichner, M.D., director of cosmetic and clinical research in dermatology at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City. A sudden change in your estrogen levelsafter pregnancy or stopping birth control pills, for examplecan also lead to temporary hair shedding.