For many women, a healthy and vibrant mane is a symbol of pride and confidence. So it can be a little unsettling and embarrassing if you notice your hair thinning or falling out more frequently.
Losing your hair can be devastating, especially when you don’t fully understand how to treat it or why it’s happening in the first place. However, knowing the facts about female hair loss can help you create peace of mind and determine the best treatment for your needs. To help, here are six commonly-held beliefs about female hair loss and a few ways you can remedy and even reverse hair loss.
Only Men Experience Hair Loss
When you think of receding hairlines and balding, you probably only think of men, right? However, female hair loss is actually normal and pretty common. In fact, over 50% of women experience noticeable hair loss by the age of 50, making it just as much of a concern for women as it is for men.
There’s no need to panic if you start to notice a few more strands in your brush, on your pillow, or in the shower. Just like men, you have options when it comes to how you can treat hair loss, whether it be with topical solutions, prescribed medications, corticosteroid injections, or laser therapy.
Hair Loss is Only Caused By Genetic Factors
There are many potential causes of hair loss in women. While genetics may provide one explanation, female hair loss can be caused by a variety of factors, such as hormonal changes following childbirth or during menopause, medical treatments, high-stress events, nutritional deficiencies, rapid weight loss, or even tight hairstyles.
These factors may impact the treatment option you use. For example, in milder cases, hair shedding may resolve on its own or with minor hairstyling adjustments. However, if you experience a greater degree of hair loss, you may need to introduce regrowth products and supplements into your daily routine. In extreme cases, you’ll need to speak with your doctor about more advanced treatment options, such as over-the-counter medications, or surgical hair restoration. Understanding the root cause of your hair loss can help you determine the best treatment for your needs.
All Hair Loss is Permanent
If you’ve already experienced hair loss, not all hope is lost. The good news is that most hair loss is not permanent. It’s often treatable and can even be reversed in some cases with a combination of lifestyle adjustments, products, and procedures. If you’re experiencing permanent hair loss from hereditary, a traumatic injury, or age-related factors, you may even be a good candidate for a surgical hair transplant.
In most instances, you can promote the growth of new hair by using holistic hair care products that improve scalp health and volumize hair, while also creating a healthier environment for new strands to grow. Likewise, using topical minoxidil drops may also help stimulate hair growth by reactivating dormant hair follicles. Minoxidil is an FDA-approved treatment for female pattern baldness that works by boosting protein production and prolonging the growth phase of hair. Since it essentially stops hair loss in its tracks, it’s best to start using it as soon as you notice you’re losing more hair than normal.
Shampooing Too Often Causes Hair Loss
There’s a common misconception that shampooing too often can cause your hair to fall out faster. That’s why some women have adopted a “low-poo” or “no-poo” routine and only wash a few times a week, at most. However, cleansing your strands and scalp regularly helps to remove dirt, oil, and product buildup, while clearing up space for new hair to grow. As long as you use the right shampoo for your hair type, it’s unlikely that you’ll experience hair loss from it. So, you can ditch the “anti-shampoo” regimens and keep washing as often as you please.
Some shampoos are actually formulated to help aid in hair regrowth, giving you even more reason to keep on shampooing. If you’ve experienced hair thinning or loss, try using shampoos and conditioners that contain hair-strengthening ingredients like keratin, biotin, and niacin to restore your hair’s integrity and keep follicles in place.
Wearing Hats Will Cause Your Hair to Fall Out
You’ve probably heard that excessive tugging on your hair can lead to hair loss. While wearing your hair in certain styles, such as tight braids, cornrows, or ponytails, can put unnecessary stress on your roots, hats don’t apply nearly the same amount of stress. Besides, hair loss is caused by genetic and hormonal factors, not by the accessories you wear.
Hats may be practical for concealing bald spots or thinning hair, but there is no significant evidence that directly correlates wearing hats to hair loss. Irregardless, it’s always better to wear looser-fitting caps to prevent oil and dirt from building up and irritating your follicles. As a general rule of thumb, your hat should be loose enough so that it doesn’t leave a mark or indentation on your skin. This will ensure that you won’t develop scalp infections, which could potentially exacerbate genetic or hormonal hair loss over time.
Hair Loss Only Happens When You’re Older
Many women believe that hair loss is a sign of aging that can only occur after menopause. However, hair loss may occur at any age. For example, female-pattern baldness can show in females as young as 12 years old. Other factors, such as stress, diet and weight loss, and hormonal changes during pregnancy, can also trigger hair loss in younger women without you even knowing it.
These often-overlooked factors can impact you at any age, meaning hair thinning and loss can occur at different stages in your life, as well. It’s important that you address any changes to your hair as soon as you notice them so you can promptly diagnose the cause and start treatment.
Female hair loss is a common issue that most women face at some point in their lives, so you shouldn’t be scared to voice your concerns with your doctor or dermatologist. With clarity in these myths, you can better prevent, treat, and even reverse hair loss.