Dealing with Female Pattern Baldness: A Comprehensive Guide

Nishi Kashyap
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Dr. Kaushal

Review medical content on WOW Rx Pharmacy, so that accurate drug use information is easily accessible to everybody.
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Female pattern baldness

Society admires long, beautiful, and silky hair. A person with beautiful hair is considered to be beautiful. Such is the importance of healthy hair.

However, research has shown that 40% of women suffer from baldness by their forties. 

Of all the causes of female alopecia (medical term for hair loss), female pattern baldness is the most common. 

Female pattern baldness can be a confusing topic and one filled with misinformation.

And that is why we have written this article to help you get the correct information.

Causes of female pattern baldness

Female pattern baldness can result from a single cause or a combination of different factors.

In this section, we take a deep dive into the different causes of female alopecia:

Hormonal changes

Female pattern baldness may happen due to hormonal imbalance. 

Dihydrotestosterone (DHT) is a hormone that is similar to Testosterone. It locks onto the hair follicles and limits their growth.

When a woman discontinues birth control pills she may experience a rise of DHT in the body.  

It may cause hair loss. 

In addition, women may also experience hair loss after pregnancy.

Why do you lose your hair after pregnancy?

When a woman is pregnant, more hair follicles grow than usual. 

This results in more hair growth than expected. 

However, after her baby is born, the hair follicles return to their resting phase. So the hair fall is more than usual. 

This loss of hair may be temporary. 

However, if the shed hair is not replaced within six months and the hair volume does not return to what it was before pregnancy, it may be permanent hair loss.

Genetics

Female pattern hair loss is genetic in nature as well, meaning if your parents have Androgenetic alopecia, you are more likely to have pattern baldness.

According to research, you are more likely to develop female pattern baldness if your mother has it too.

Medical issues

Medical problems like hypertension, diabetes, and even stress can lead to hair loss in women. 

Chronic conditions like the ones mentioned above and even cancer may lead to hair fall by blocking the nutrient and oxygen flow to the hair follicles. 

Female pattern baldness in the 20s

Although it may alarm you, it is a fact that female hair pattern baldness can begin in a  woman as young as in her 20s.

The most common causes of hair loss in a young lady are stress, restrictive dieting, and hormonal changes.

Stress

As already explained earlier, stress can trigger your hair follicles to enter their resting phase, which stops the hair growth on your head.

Restrictive dieting

Following a diet is great until it does not limit the number of nutrients you consume. 

It would be best if you took a balanced diet when dieting so that you do not experience deficiency of any nutrient.

Symptoms

These are the common symptoms of female hair pattern baldness:

Christmas pattern baldness

The stages of female hair loss are classified on the Ludwig scale. Christmas pattern baldness is an intermediate stage on the Ludwig scale.

Starting with the top and crown of the head, it widens from the center parting. This pattern of hair loss is called Christmas pattern baldness.

The hair is thinner towards the front and tapers towards the other side, which is why it is shaped like a Christmas tree.

Shedding of more hairs than normal

You might notice more hair shedding than usual. This may be caused by a combination of emotional, mental, and physical factors.

Stress, in particular, causes the loosening of your hair from its root, thus resulting in more hair loss than is typical.

Warning
Stressing about hair falling can result in more hair loss.
As already explained, stress loosens your hair from its root, making it easier for it to fall.
Thus it would help if you tried not to panic when experiencing hair fall. Instead, fix an appointment with a doctor and see them.

Diagnosis

Female pattern hair loss is diagnosed by doctors based on the following tests:

Finding the cause of hair loss

There may be many causes of hair loss, such as thyroid problems or iron deficiency. 

Your dermatologist will start your hair loss diagnosis by finding out the reason why your hair is falling out.

Medical history and family medical records

The doctor will also evaluate your medical history and your family’s medical history to determine why your hair is falling out. 

As said earlier, female pattern hair loss is hereditary.

Hereditary hair lossSource: Science photo library
hereditary_hair_loss

Pattern and appearance of hair fall

The pattern and appearance of your hair fall can reveal much about its cause.

In female pattern baldness, the hair fall follows a Christmas pattern baldness, with the frontline intact.

Preventing female pattern baldness

Before we move on to the treatment options for female pattern baldness, here are some tips you can use to care for your hair.

Nourish yourself with hair nutrients

Vitamin D, B complex, Biotin, and proteins are all good nutrients you should include in your diet to nourish your hair and ensure that you have voluminous tresses.

Massage your scalp

Massaging your scalp may lead to more hair thickness as the papilla cells in your scalp get stretched, according to studies.

These papilla cells play a significant role in your hair growth.

Use natural oils

You can use natural oils to promote hair growth and to keep your hair healthy.

These oils include:

  • Coconut oil

    According to study, coconut oil helps prevent protein loss from your hair and nourishes the hair’s microbiome.
  • Rosemary oil

    It is an essential oil to promote hair growth and stops hair loss. You need to mix a few drops of rosemary oil in your shampoo or conditioner daily and then use it.

    It can even help treat Androgenetic alopecia.
  • Geranium oil

    Native to South Africa, it is used to boost circulation and promote hair growth.
Coconut oil for hair lossSource: Getty Images
Coconut_oil_for_hair_loss

Treatment of female pattern baldness

There are many ways to stop female pattern baldness from hurting your self-esteem. As detailed in this section, you can use medicines or get a hair transplant.

Medications

You can start by trying out these medicine for your thinning hair locks:

Minoxidil

It is the only FDA-approved medicine to treat female pattern baldness. Minoxidil works by lengthening the growth phase of hair follicles. 

It is a medicine that is applied topically on your scalp, or you can use its foam or tabs. 

Available over the counter, you do not need a prescription to buy Minoxidil. You can buy Minoxidil online easily from WowRxpharmacy.

Antiandrogens

Antiandrogens were initially used to treat blood pressure problems. 

However, in the 1990s, doctors found they are also helpful in treating hair loss due to Androgenetic Alopecia, both in men and women.

All adults, including females, have testosterone in their bodies. 

Antiandrogen curbs the production of testosterone and other androgens.  

When the body produces less Testosterone, less Dihydrotesterone (DHT) will attach to the androgen receptor. Hence, lowering hair fall.

You can use Antiandrogens like Aldactone, Estrogen, and even oral contraceptives.

Hair transplant

You can go for a hair transplant if it is feasible for you.

During these hair transplants, the surgeon will graft your hair from where it is densely growing to where it is sparse.

These transplants even look entirely natural.

However, you must ensure that you are eligible for a hair transplant. You should approach your doctor to see if you qualify for this transplant.

Laser treatment

It is an FDA-approved treatment. 

It is not clear how exactly it works, but doctors confirm it stimulates the stem cells in the follicles and leads to hair growth.

You can thus use low-level laser therapy to help you with hair loss.

Change in hairstyle

You can even change your hairstyle if you want to hide those thinning hair. 

Changing a new hairstyle might give you the confidence boost you need to face the world.

Hairstyles for Female Pattern Baldness
Here we have compiled the best hairstyles for women with pattern baldness

  • Bob cut
  • Side part
  • Blunt cut
  • Pixie cut
Bob cut for hair lossSource: Alena Ozerova
Bob_cut_for_hair_loss

When to see a doctor

Consult your dermatologist if you notice hair thinning, skin rash, or irritation.

You will have more options for treatment available, provided the reason for hair loss is discovered early.

To conclude

Hair fall is an issue that distresses women daily.

If it is female pattern baldness, you need not worry. 

You are encouraged to focus on finding the cause of your hair shedding.

Contacting a doctor if necessary, and starting a treatment regimen should also be considered if necessary. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Is female pattern baldness reversible?

Female pattern baldness is irreversible and does not have any set treatment. However, you can stop your hair loss and maybe even regrow your lost hair if you seek proper treatment.

How long does it take for female pattern baldness to progress?

The rate of female pattern baldness is not constant and it occurs at its pace. It is common to notice excess shedding for 3-6 months, followed by 6-18 months of stability in hair loss.

How do I style my hair with female pattern baldness?

You can use hairstyles like bob cut, pixie cut, and blunt cut to hide your shed hair. You can also part your hair sideways to hide the bald spots.

At what age does female pattern baldness happen?

For most women, female pattern baldness starts in their 40s, 50s, or 60s. However, it can even begin when they are younger in some women.

Does female pattern baldness start at the crown?

Yes, it starts at the crown and top of the scalp. It normally widens from the center part.

What causes female pattern baldness?

Female pattern baldness may be caused by genetics, hormonal changes, or medical issues.

How do I know if I have female pattern baldness?

You may observe your hair falling in the Christmas tree pattern, in which there are bald spots along the center part of the hair.

Citations:
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