Female Pattern Baldness: Types, Treatments, and Home Remedies
When we hear the word ‘baldness’ the first picture that comes to our mind is a bald man. This is perhaps because male baldness is openly discussed and there is no shame about it. But when it comes to women, many do not even have a clue about female pattern baldness.
Believe it or not, according to the American Academy of Dermatology, 40% of women experience female baldness by the age of 50. This is only 10% lower than male baldness frequency.
So, what should women do? Worry? No! Increasing your knowledge about female hair loss and bald patterns, hair loss cure, and some remedies can help you make a big difference in avoiding it, slowing it down, and choosing the best hair loss treatment for women.
Awareness is key when it comes to dealing with female pattern baldness. And, this is what we are trying to tackle in this article. Read on.
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Women and Baldness
The terms female pattern hair loss (FPHL) and androgenetic hair loss are used to refer to female pattern baldness. There are several causes that lead to balding on women, such as
- genetic factors,
- hormonal imbalances, like thyroid hair loss,
- medical conditions, for example, polycystic ovary syndrome or PCOS hair thinning,
- medications and treatments, such as chemotherapy hair loss,
- stress and other lifestyle-related factors, like smoking.
Let’s leave a full discussion of the causes to another article, and for now, just focus our attention on different types of female hair shedding patterns and female baldness treatment.
What Are the Different Types of Female Pattern Baldness?
Like the causes, there are several types of female pattern baldness.
1. Diffuse Hair Thinning in Women
Perhaps the most common baldness pattern among women, diffuse hair thinning or diffuse hair loss involves noticeable loss of hair across the whole scalp, rather than a specific area. As a result, you will see a significant decrease in the volume and density of your hair.
Various factors can trigger diffuse hair thinning. For example, effluvium hair loss can cause you to witness too much of your hair falling out during washing, brushing, styling, and daily activities. Consequently, you lose your normal hair density.
Other underlying causes for this female hair thinning condition can include hormonal imbalances, aging, nutritional deficiencies, poor hair care routines, stress, etc.
2. Christmas Tree Pattern
Many balding women first experience the widening of their part line, especially the midline parting. Then, this hair loss and thinning progresses to the crown and other top parts of the scalp and it gets more and more visible.
This female pattern baldness is sometimes referred to as the Christmas tree pattern and is associated with androgenetic alopecia.
Some people’s hair follicles are genetically sensitive to androgens, like dihydrotestosterone (DHT), and little by little they start growing thinner hair strands with fragile shafts. These hairs can fall out easily, resulting in hair thinning and hair loss in women.
3. Female Receding Hairline
Frontal hairline recession in women looks like the male baldness pattern. You may notice that your hairline is receding like an M or a V shape, leaving you with a different face frame.
This type of baldness can lead to a lot of distress for women as it directly affects their facial attractiveness. Besides, it is very visible and difficult to hide.
Female thin hairline mostly happens due to genetics and hormonal factors. However, you should also beware of your frequent hairstyles that cause a lot of pulling and tension on the hairline, like a tight ponytail. They can give rise to hairline thinning in women as well.
4. Crown Hair Loss in Women
Ladies hair loss can also include hair thinning at the crown area. It can be in the form of a small bald spot or a widening part line at the back of your head.
This female pattern alopecia usually occurs due to hair follicles miniaturization at the crown or vertex of the scalp. The result would be shorter, weaker, and finer hair strands in these areas that can fall out easily resulting in a visible thinning or bald spot.
Genetic predisposition, hormonal fluctuations (such as postnatal hair loss), and even aging can cause female thinning crown.
5. Temporary Female Hair Fall
Hairloss in women can happen temporarily as a side effect of various medications or treatments as well as medical conditions. This is also called telogen effluvium hair loss which leads to temporary diffuse hair shedding that is usually reversable if treated properly (as opposed to chronic telogen effluvium that is not easily cured).
Reasons for such temporary hairfall in women include
- Hormonal changes: This can happen during or after pregnancy (aka postnatal or postpartum hair loss) and during menopause called menopausal hair thinning or menopausal alopecia.
- Medications/treatments: The most common medication and treatment that leads to temporary hair loss is chemotherapy for cancer patients.
- Medical conditions: Some underlying medical conditions can also trigger it. For example, scalp conditions, thyroid hair loss, and some autoimmune systems.
Overall, women experience female pattern baldness differently. But the most important thing to remember is to take it seriously and consult with a dermatologist as soon as you see the first signs of excessive hair shedding. Because only healthcare professionals can find out the actual cause and suggest an effective hair fall treatment for women.
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Hair Treatment for Hair Loss in Women
Depending on what is the underlying cause of female pattern baldness, some remedies and treatments are recommended.
Topical medication is a good choice for more localized treatment of hair loss. One of the most common and effective hair-thinning topical medications is Rogaine for women.
It includes minoxidil which promotes hair growth by stimulating hair follicles in the area under treatment. Female Rogaine is available over the counter and should typically be applied to the balding spot twice a day for some months.
However, you need to be patient and consistent in using topical medication to see significant changes in your hair conditions.
Before anything, you should know that any oral medications must be prescribed by your dermatologist because they usually affect hormone levels.
For example, spironolactone and finasteride improve hair follicle conditions by blocking or reducing the effects of androgens.
Although finasteride is normally prescribed for men, in some cases, it can be used to treat women’s hair thinning as well.
Low-Level Laser Therapy
LLLT or low-level laser therapy increases the blood flow to follicles in the area under treatment. In this way, it stimulates follicles and improves hair growth.
It is usually done with laser combs or laser helmets as a non-invasive method. To see significant improvements, it needs to be done regularly and consistently.
PRP stands for platelet-rich plasma and involves the injection of your own platelet-rich plasma into your scalp to improve hair growth by stimulating the dormant follicles.
The treatment is done over several sessions with intervals of a few weeks.
Hair Implants for Women
A final cure to baldness can be a female hair transplant. It is a surgical solution to female pattern baldness only when the hair loss is severe and other treatments have not been effective.
During the procedure, hair plugs for women are transplanted to the bald areas. These hair plugs are normally taken from the patient’s own scalp. Although there are some risks, the result will be long-lasting and natural.
Read ‘Hair Transplant vs Hair Replacement’ to learn more about the advantages and disadvantages of hair transplant for women.
All in all, you should keep in mind that whether any of these treatments are effective or suitable varies depending on each patient’s condition. Follow your healthcare professional’s advice for the best result.
Home Remedies for Female Pattern Baldness
While some female hair loss cannot be easily reversed or cured through non-invasive procedures, a few home remedies can help with hair regrowth in women, particularly for temporary hair shedding. Let’s go over some of them.
- Gentle scalp massage can improve the blood circulation in the scalp. So, the hair follicles may be stimulated. What’s more, it will be more effective if you use a few drops of rosemary oil or peppermint oil while massaging.
- Having a balanced diet and/or taking some hair growth supplements is essential. For example, biotin and other necessary vitamins like C and E. For a complete discussion of the effects of diet on healthy hair read ‘Food for Hair Growth’.
- Avoid too much heat styling, using harsh hair care products, and hairstyles that cause excessive tension on your hair follicles.
- Manage your stress.
Making necessary changes in our habits and lifestyle alongside getting more serious hair loss treatments can optimize the results.
FAQs about Female Pattern Hair Loss
Here are the answers to some of the most common questions we get from our patients at our Hair Loss Centers in Southern California.
When Should I Start Worrying about My Hair Shedding?
We normally lose 50 to 100 hairs a day. If you notice a sudden rise in your hair loss and/or other symptoms, such as changes in your weight, skin, and menstrual cycle, you are strongly recommended to seek professional help. In addition, if hair loss and baldness are common in your family, you should take it more seriously.
Will My Hair Grow Back After Hair Loss?
For temporary hair loss conditions, it will grow back. However, you should be patient and follow suitable treatments consistently for optimal results. More severe cases can be also treated through some procedures such as platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy.
What Habits or Lifestyles Might Lead to Hair Loss in Women?
- Stress and anxiety,
- imbalanced diet,
- excessive use of alcohol,
- drug addiction,
- too much heat styling,
- aggressive hairstyling,
- using harsh chemicals,
- and not following an appropriate hair care routine.
Is It Possible to Prevent Female Baldness?
Female baldness happens for all sorts of reasons. Whether you can prevent it or not depends on the underlying causes that lead to excessive hair loss in women. However, making the right changes in your lifestyle can definitely slow it down and improve your hair health conditions.
And, early detection might help you to intervene the hair loss and start treatments sooner to reverse the process before it gets too serious.
Call to get a quote for our human hair custom wigs.970-442-8340
How Can I Deal with the Emotional Distress of Hair Loss?
Losing your hair, especially for women, can be absolutely frustrating. So, it is essential to get help and advice about regaining your self-esteem and try different ways to feel like yourself again. For example, for cancer patients and alopecia patients, wearing wigs can make a big difference in how they feel about themselves. Remember, your psychological well-being is important if you want your treatments to be effective.
Newport Hair Loss Center, a Sanctuary for Anyone Undergoing Hair Loss
Now that you know the different types and symptoms of female pattern baldness, you can detect it more quickly and start seeking medical help.
At our hair loss centers in San Diego (949-640-4247), Orange (949-322-9555), and Los Angeles (310-991-0087), we offer not only the best and most natural-looking European hair wigs to help you get back to your normal self, but we also try to provide other supports, such as consultation and education.
Call any of our three centers in Southern California to schedule a free consultation session with one of our wig experts. We will guide you through this tough time.