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Step 1: Understanding Women's Hair LossInformation presented by HairLossTalk.com
Women's Hair Loss Myths
Let's nail out some of the first things people are going to tell you. First off, unless you have undergone extreme emotional turmoil without abatement for several months, your hair loss is most likely not due to "stress". True, situations like a pregnancy, crash dieting, or severe emotional abuse can definitely result in thinning hair. In such cases its recommended that you get on Rogaine Foam or Tricomin Therapy Spray or both, to help start the hair growth process again.
Female Androgenetic Alopecia
Androgenetic Alopecia in women is typically characterized by diffuse thinning throughout the hair bearing area. It can be minor or dramatic. The cause is assumed to be very similar to mens Androgenetic Alopecia (Male Pattern Baldness). In both cases, the reason you are losing your hair is a sensitivity of your follicles to the hormones in your scalp. The specific hormone is typically DHT, or Dihydro-Testosterone. This is why treatments for women's androgenetic alopecia include DHT blockers, and antiandrogens, just like with men. Some typical treatments are Topical Spironolactone (S5) cream, Revivogen, and (with the consent of your doctor only), Propecia.
Researchers have classified some forms of female hair loss by using a scale known as the Ludwig Scale. This is a rather limited, but accurate portrayal of what is commonly seen in women with hair loss. Female Androgenetic Alopecia is just one kind of diffuse hair loss experienced by women. It is particularly likely to appear at times of hormonal change, and is generally identified by overall thinning versus patchy loss. Some common causes of Female Androgenetic Alopecia are: Starting or stopping birth control, the postpartum period, and pre and early post menopausal periods. With Female Androgenetic Alopecia, women rarely go completely bald. The end result of the condition is a visible decrease in density of hair in the affected areas.
We will discuss the treatments for this form of hair loss, in the next pages
Telogen Effluvium or Androgentic Alopecia?
The most important thing to remember about Telogen Effluvium is that its cause is temporary, and its duration will also be temporary. Your biggest struggle will be trying to figure out if you have Androgenetic Alopecia, or Telogen Effluvium. The most effective way is to rule out any underlying hormonal imbalances via the proper blood tests (covered in the next pages). You should also recap the last year of your life to determine if you've had any extremely traumatic experiences or conditions. If the blood tests reveal no imbalances, and you do not have any significant life changing events to point to, and your hair has been thinning for a prolonged period of time, you can likely conclude that you are dealing with Androgenetic Alopecia. This is a more ongoing condition that needs to be managed with treatments. If however you can specify a traumatic event (pregnancy, birth control pills, etc), your hair loss has been short lived, or you identify a thyroid or other imbalance, this can be called Telogen Effluvium.
Common Causes of Telogen Effluvium in Women
The following are the most common causes of telogen effluvium (temporary hair loss) in women: (Birth Control): Starting or stopping birth control. (Postpartum Period): After pregnancy it is common to lose hair. It is typically restored on its own or with the help of Rogaine Foam or Tricomin Therapy Spray or both. (Hormonal): Changes in hormone levels or thyoroid imbalances are common reversible causes. (Nutritional): Crash dieting, chronic nutritional deprivation, alcoholism, zinc or iron deficiency can all be causes of TE. (Fever): 2 to 5 months after severe fever related illness, TE can begin. (Systemic Illness): Conditions such as Crohn's or Hepatic Disease, Syphilis, Lymphoproliferative disorders, and inflammatory bowel disease. (Medications): A large number of drugs have been reported to cause or possibly cause, diffuse Alopecia.
Either way the treatment is the same for both Androgenetic Alopecia and Telogen Effluvium. A growth stimulant is highly advised as a foundational course of action, whether it be Rogaine Foam or Tricomin Therapy Spray or both. Those with Androgenetic Alopecia should however begin to look into the available antiandrogen treatments. We will go over those in the next couple pages. Hang in there!