Most women have a pretty good idea of what they can expect during menopause. Hot flashes, mood swings—these symptoms are fairly well known. There is one symptom that women can be surprised by, though—and that’s hair loss. Following menopause, roughly 40 percent of women deal with thinning hair—a rate that’s comparable with hair loss in men. In this post, we’ll guide women through menopausal hair loss—why it happens, what to expect from it, and what can be done about it.
Hormones, Hair Loss, and Menopause
First off, why does hair loss occur during and after menopause? It all comes down to hormones. Just as a surge in hormones during pregnancy can lead to hair growth, a tapering off of hormones during menopause can lead to hair loss.
But it’s not just a matter of female hormones decreasing. The inverse also happens: Androgens, which are male hormones, actually increase. The result of this is that hair follicles can fail—producing weaker and weaker hair, and eventually ceasing to produce any hair at all.
Even the treatments women receive during menopause can be counterproductive, at least as far as hair loss goes. For instance, some women will be asked by their doctors to start taking testosterone supplements—and while this may be the healthy thing to do, it can also cause additional hair loss.
Other Factors in Menopausal Hair Loss
It’s also important to note that menopausal women may face hair loss for a variety of reasons—not all of them hormonal, necessarily. Genetic predisposition to hair loss can be a factor. Elevated stress can also play a part. Of course, there may be unrelated illnesses or medical treatments that lead to hair loss, as well.
Meanwhile, hormonal imbalances can have causes that aren’t directly related to menopause—thyroid problems, for example. That’s what makes it important for women to speak with their doctors about any and all symptoms they experience during menopause, ensuring that there are no hidden medical conditions that need to be uncovered.
Early Signs of Menopausal Hair Loss
Now, menopausal hair loss is not going to cause instantaneous baldness; in fact, for most women with menopausal hair loss, the effect is subtler. You’re more likely to notice gradual thinning of the hair all over your scalp than you are hair just falling out in clumps.
In fact, one of the surest indicators of hair loss is that it’s harder for you to put your hair into a ponytail, or that your ponytail is shorter than it was before. If you do witness any of these early signs of hair loss, that’s when you should act. Early intervention can help minimize the effect of hair loss.
Treating Menopausal Hair Loss
The good news is that menopausal hair loss is a treatable condition—and it can be treated in a number of ways, all of which can be effective.
The first thing we recommend is receiving an accurate diagnosis. Discover the cause of your hair loss by coming to Hair Professionals for some private, painless testing; figuring out the cause of your hair loss will guide us toward identifying the right solution.
The treatments for menopausal hair loss might involve simple lifestyle changes. Nutritional supplements can sometimes go a long way. Additionally, there are topical solutions that can be tremendously effective, as well as laser hair therapy.
Should hair loss become more extreme, hair replacement may be the best option—and here again, there are plenty of options on the table. A hair system is just one of several good solutions for women who are ready to look and feel like themselves again.
Get the Help You Need from Hair Professionals
The psychological effects of menopausal hair loss can be difficult to bear, so we want to make sure women know that there is always a way to treat hair loss. The best way to start the process is simply to come to Hair Professionals for a consultation. Join us today, and we’ll show you some great options for hair loss treatment and hair replacement.