What is Female Pattern Baldness?
Female pattern hair loss (FPHL) is a distinctive form of hair loss that occurs in women with androgenetic alopecia. Many women are affected by FPHL. In fact, around 40% of women by age 50 show signs of hair loss and less than 45% of women actually reach the age of 80 with a full head of hair.
How Demoralising is Female Hair Loss?
With no known cure for alopecia, and a long list of ineffective treatments, suffering from baldness can feel like the worst possible thing to go through, especially from a woman's point of view. Here, we break down the four main reasons why thinning hair can be the most emotionally painful process a woman ever has to go through...
1. Straight after pregnancy
Having a baby is supposed to be the best time in the life of any new parent, so why does there have to be an 'after-effect'? A large amount of women tend to suffer from extreme hair thinning and balding during, and more commonly, straight after pregnancy. Studies suggest this dramatic rise in hair fall could most likely be caused by the increase in hormones during pregnancy. This can be emotionally devastating for the majority of women, and it can even ruin what was meant to be the happiest time of their lives, somewhat.
2. Women aren't meant to go bald
Nobody batters an eyelid when they see a bald man in public, but a balding woman would certainly turn quite a few heads, and not for the right reasons. Even though over 40% of females experience hair loss before they reach middle age, we still notice it a whole lot more when we see a lady with a thinning scalp.
3. Women want to look their best
Most men are happy just to have hair at all, but women tend to need much more than that. In an image conscience society, women (and men) are under more pressure than ever to look their best. Humans generally judge on appearance, therefore a full head of thick hair is vital for a woman to look her very best. Taking the volume out of a woman's hair is like shaving a few inches of a man's height.
4. Good hair makes women look more feminine
Women want great hair, in the same way men tend to want bushy beards. You just can't take away the simple laws of the human mind - Women feel more attractive and confident with a big heap of locks, whereas men feel strong and masculine with a good bit of facial hair. You could even say that hair to a woman is even more important to facial hair or height to a man, as many deem her hair as her biggest physical attribute.
Can Female Pattern Baldness be Treated?
There are a number of scalp treatments and products on the market, including the FDA approved hair growth formula, Minoxidil (2% for female users). Although Minoxidil can work to a certain extent, many women tend to come off it due to its common side-effects such as weight gain, severe headaches, and facial hair growth.
The most popular form of female baldness treatments tends to be scalp therapy serums and hair health supplements. Hair growth agents like Biotin can benefit a balding scalp, as can the potent North American plant extract, Saw Palmetto - but be warned, Saw Palmetto is not recommended for women who are pregnant or breast-feeding. Women should also not exceed 250mg of Saw Palmetto, daily.
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