Causes for Women's Hair Loss

By Cindi Pearce

  • Overview

    Causes for Women's Hair Loss
    Your hair may not be your crowning glory, but you certainly don't want to lose it. Most of us would prefer to keep our hair--even if we're always complaining about it and coveting someone else's prettier, fuller and healthier hair. Some hair is certainly better than having no hair. There are various reasons why women lose their hair, some of which are preventable.
  • Alopecia

    Androgenetic alopecia (AGA) is a very common cause of hair loss among both women and men. If a person has both the genetic predisposition toward AGA, as well as the presence of androgens (male hormones), that person is susceptible to AGA, which, in women, is frequently referred to as female diffuse thinning. In females, the front hairline can remain intact when alopecia strikes, but not always. Alopecia is an autoimmune disease. The person's immune system attacks the hair follicles, which stops the growth of the hair. The condition generally manifests itself by creating small bald patches in the scalp and can progress until the person is completely bald.
  • Vitamin Deficiency

    If you are losing your hair, talk to your doctor. He can run blood tests on you to determine if you are vitamin-deficient. If a woman is anemic (iron-deficient) or lacks Vitamin B or folic acid, this can cause your hair to fall out. Biotin is a B Vitamin that we need because it is beneficial to our overall health and promotes hair growth. By eating carrots, cauliflower, yeast, bananas, mushrooms and sardines, you can get Biotin into your system. Biotin also helps prevent hair from turning gray. Ample protein is necessary for healthy hair. Healthy protein is found in dairy products, whey and lean meats. Vitamin B 5 has actually proved to help prevent hair loss and plays a role in maintaining the pigmentation (color) of your hair. You can get this vitamin by eating whole grain foods, eggs yolks, whole milk, potatoes, and vegetables.

  • Medical Reasons and Medications

    Illnesses that can result in hair loss include thyroid malfunction, diabetes, lupus and anemia. If you are experiencing substantial and inexplicable hair loss, make an appointment to see your physician. Hair loss can be an indicator of an underlying issue that should be addressed and treated immediately. Certain medications, including blood thinners (anti-coagulants) can cause hair loss, as can birth control pills and antidepressants. Birth control pills artificially alter a woman's hormones and can cause premature thinning of hair. Sometimes this loss is permanent. If you take too much Vitamin A, it can result in hair loss. Also, there are some medical causes that are related to trauma. Surgery can cause a woman to lose her hair, as can a traumatic and stressful event, or even a high fever.
  • Childbearing and Birth

    Pregnancy can take its toll on hair, according to, because your hormone levels are fluctuating. Post-pregnancy, the hormones eventually return to their normal range but it may takes a few months. During that time, hair loss may occur. During the pregnancy, a woman does not lose the normal amount of hair but makes up for it afterward when she may notice a significant loss over a short period of time. Generally, the lost hair is re-grown and the hair returns to normal.
  • Menopause

    Hair loss often results when women go through menopause, and this is due to the hormonal alterations that are occurring in the body. Estrogen production declines at this time. Estrogen serves many purposes, including blocking the male hormone testosterone. When the estrogen supply is depleted, it is no longer as effective as it once was in warding off the male hormones. The male hormone testosterone transforms into DHT, which is dihydrotestosterone. DHT reaches the hair follicles, making it difficult for vitamins and minerals to get into the hair shaft, which is essential if a person is to have a bountiful head of hair. DHT is a natural metabolite. In an attempt to counteract DHT, eat a diet rich in protein, vitamins and minerals, particularly when you are going through menopause.
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