Clinical Evaluation Talk To Your Doctor
A laboratory workup for hair loss is commonly performed. Additional questions that you may be asked to help narrow down differential diagnosis are :
- When did the hair loss start? A sudden onset of hair loss may be suggestive of a disruption of the hair cycle.
- Where is the hair loss most prominent? Hair loss can be patchy, diffuse or patterned. Diffuse shedding may indicate disruption of the hair cycle, while patterned thinning could be attributed to hormonal dysregulation.
- What is the normal hair care routine? Certain hair care practices can have a tremendous impact on the loss of hair health.
With proper evaluation and appropriate testing for hormonal imbalances or nutritional deficiencies, help is on the way!
Age & Hormones 2 Factors That Influence The Hair Cycle
How age influences the hair cycle
How hormones influence the hair cycle
Hair strands begin to change during puberty, when large amounts of male and female hormones arrive in the blood.
The hair growth cycle is determined by the influence of these hormones. The latter are produced by the endocrine gland and are transported in the blood. They then bond to target cells, in this case, the roots of the hair, which capture the hormones signal and react as a result.
There are 2 types of hormones: male or androgenic hormones, including testosterone, and female or estrogen hormones such as progesterone.
These hormones play a different role in the body and particularly in the hair cycle.
Female or estrogen hormones participate in hair growth by slowing down growth and prolonging the anagen phase.
Inversely, male or androgenic hormones accelerate the hair cycle. Strictly speaking, androgens alone do not trigger hair loss. This is in fact the result of a chemical reaction, DHT, which is triggered by the combination of androgens and (-alpha reductase, an enzyme found in the scalp. DHT accelerates the hair growth cycle to such an extent that the hair follicles become saturated and begin producing shorter and shorter hairs until they are worn out. They are then able to produce only a fine layer of fuzz, and then nothing at all. These inactive follicles retract into the dermis and the skin becomes smoother.
*Ak-A 2019 study
Hair Loss And Testosterone
The relationship between testosterone and hair loss is complicated. A popular belief is that bald men have high levels of testosterone, but is this really true?
Male pattern baldness, or androgenic alopecia, affects an estimated 50 million men and 30 million women in the United States, according to the National Institutes of Health . Hair loss is due to the shrinkage of hair follicles and the resulting impact on the growth cycle. New hairs become finer and finer until theres no hair left at all and the follicles become dormant. This hair loss is caused by hormones and certain genes.
Don’t Miss: Nugenix Estro Regulator Side Effects
Ready To Get Your Hair Back
Youre a special, unique individual, and the underlying factors that are contributing to your hair thinning are unlike anyone elses. In order to suggest treatments that may work, our provider performs a thorough evaluation and talks to you in-depth about your health, your life, and your goals.
If youre ready to find out how we might help, book an appointment at our office in Rockville, Maryland.
You Might Also Enjoy…
How Hormones Affect Hair Loss
There are a lot of things that go through a patients mind when theyre losing their hair. One question they often ask themselves and ask us here at RHRLI is, Why? Patients want to know what causes their hair loss and they also want to know what kind of permanent solution they can find. When youre looking at causes of hair loss, youve probably heard mention of hormones. Hormones can affect hair loss, but the involvement of hormones in the most common cause of hair loss is a little bit complicated.
Also Check: Blue Cross Blue Shield Testosterone Coverage
Hormones And Hair Loss: Understanding The Connection
“The content below is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding amedicalcondition.”
The average person loses from 50 to 100 hairs each day.
It seems like lately, youve had a higher than normal amount of hair in your hairbrush each morning.
Youve heard hair loss can be the result of a hormone imbalance and are wondering if there may be a connection between your hair loss and your hormones?
Read on to learn about hair loss, hormones, and how holistic nutrition can help.
Hormonal Imbalance Hair Loss: 4 Common Causes
Hormonal imbalance hair loss can occur for a wide variety of reasons.
Sometimes it is triggered by hormonal changes, such as pregnancy or menopause.
In other cases, factors such as stress or irregular thyroid levels may be affecting your hairline.
Lets take a look at the 4 most common causes of hair loss with hormone imbalance.
The Relationship Between Thyroid Problems Estrogen And Hair Loss
Interestingly, estrogen dominance can lead to the symptoms of thyroid problems, one of which is hair loss!
What happens is that the liver creates too much thyroid binding globulin when estrogen levels are high.
TBG binds the thyroid hormones in the blood, meaning that they cant be absorbed as needed by the cells in the body that use them to support the bodys metabolism.
The difficulty is that standard blood tests for thyroid conditions dont show up the problem.
The AMOUNT of thyroid hormone in the blood is just as it should be but the hormone is being bound by the TBG.
The result is that the symptoms of thyroid problems start to appear.
TBG can, however, be detected with a blood test, so its important to bear this in mind and ask to be tested if you feel this may be the problem youre experiencing.
The Role Of Hormones On Hair Loss
Androgen hormones, sometimes referred to as male hormones, like DHEA and testosterone, play the largest role in your overall hair growth. When your levels of these hormones are too high, you may experience excess hair growth, especially on the body or face. However, when your hormone levels drop, the reverse occurs and can lead to thinning hair and even hair loss.
The hormones produced by your thyroid also play an important role in hair growth and hair loss. When your thyroid isnt active enough , your metabolism slows. To compensate, your body begins to shut down less important functions, such as hair growth.
Menopausal women and women with polycystic ovarian syndrome or who are pregnant may also notice changes in their hair growth. This is typically because of changes or imbalances in estrogen and progesterone levels. The largest drop in estrogen occurs in perimenopause and menopause. Stress can exacerbate the effects of the loss of estrogen, causing further hair loss and thinning
Read Also: Can Estrace Cause Weight Gain
How Is A Hormonal Imbalance Diagnosed
First, make an appointment with a health care provider for a physical exam. The health care provider will ask about your symptoms. Then, depending on your symptoms, they will suggest which hormone imbalance tests to do. These could be evaluations like:
- Blood test: Estrogen, progesterone, testosterone, thyroxine, TTH, insulin, and cortisol levels can be detected in the blood.
- Pelvic exam: A health care provider will search for any lumps or cysts.
- Ultrasound: Images of your uterus, ovaries, thyroid, and pituitary gland can be obtained.
Medications And Health Changes
Sometimes the unexpected happens. Introducing a new medication, rapidly losing or gaining weight, or simply adjusting to a new routine can all cause extreme hormonal fluctuations. These changes inevitably affect hair loss when it comes to maintaining your beautiful curls.
Check in with your doctor regularly if you find yourself experiencing unexplained hair loss and be prepared to adjust or supplement medications as recommended. Many beauty lovers find it helpful to keep a diary or note sheet of changes to discuss with their doctor in terms of skincare woes and hair hassles. Oftentimes these concerns get pushed aside or minimized for fear of sounding silly. Rest assured, any small changes are worth bringing up, even if you’re merely looking to find fewer hair clumps in the shower drain!
When introducing new habits like a fresh workout routine or a significant dietary change, do so slowly. Remember to be kind to your body. Rapid and sudden shifts won’t give your hormones time to adjust and get on board with the new routine. This can lead to a spike or drop in blood sugar which contributes to diffuse hair loss and often undermines any fitness goals you may be aspiring to.
Trade your Blow Dryer and Straightener for the Worlds First and Only Reverse-Air Dryer.
Recommended Reading: Blue Cross Blue Shield Trt
What Are The Treatment Options
Hormone replacement therapy is one of the most common treatments of low hormone levels.
For people experiencing menopause, premature menopause, or primary ovarian insufficiency as well as after oophorectomy or chemotherapy estrogen therapy can offer some relief. Estrogen therapy alone is recommended for those who have had a hysterectomy. You can take estrogen in different forms, generally estrogen pills and estrogen patches.
Get Hair Health And Science News Delivered Right To Your Inbox
Medically Reviewed by
Hair loss is often caused by an imbalance in hormone levels. One of the hormones most closely associated with hair loss is cortisol. Understanding how hormones and hair loss are connected, and how to regulate the effects of it, can help lead to healthier hair.
What is cortisol?
Cortisol is a hormone made by the adrenal glands in response to both good and bad stress. While it gets a lot of negative press, Cortisol actually does several good things for the body. It helps the body efficiently turning fat and sugar into energy, and it helps manage stress.
Cortisol and the Flight-or-Fight Response
One of the main triggers that tells the body to release cortisol is stress. This is known as the flight-or-fight response. Historically this happened when, for example, a tiger was chasing our ancestors. Today it can happen when you are already late for work and get stuck in traffic, when you fight with your spouse about chores, or when your in-laws are visiting. However, the difference is that when the cortisol levels were raised in our ancestors it led to physical action. The stress of today is normally not followed by flight or fight, which makes Cortisol levels build up in our bodies, and that can be damaging.
How Hormones and Hair Loss are Connected Through Stress
Sign up for the Nutrafol Newsletter
Recommended Reading: How Long Does Olly Sleep Take To Work
Dht: The Hormone Behind Hair Loss
Dihydrotestosterone is made from testosterone by an enzyme called 5-alpha reductase. It can also be made from DHEA, a hormone more common in women. DHT is found in skin, hair follicles, and the prostate. The actions of DHT and the sensitivity of hair follicles to DHT is what causes hair loss.
DHT also acts in the prostate. Without DHT, the prostate doesnt develop normally. With too much DHT, a man can develop benign prostate hypertrophy, also known as an enlarged prostate.
How Can Thinning Hair Affect Me
While thinning hair itself doesnt usually affect your physical health directly, there are many ways hair loss can negatively impact your well-being. One study showed that 55% of women who were experiencing some form of hair loss also experienced symptoms of depression. In this same study, about 89% of those women noticed improvements in their depressive symptoms after receiving treatment for hair loss. Many women notice they have lower self-esteem, confidence, and negative body image after experiencing hair loss.
The problem with hair loss during menopause is that it doesnt just signal hormone imbalances or extra stress, it can also cause negative consequences for your mental, emotional, and social health. Many women notice that theyre less likely to engage in social activities if they experience menopausal hair loss. They may also feel anxiety and stress about their hair. Over time, this can also affect your overall well-being and quality of life. Therefore, if youre experiencing thinning hair, its important to talk to your doctor. If youre experiencing other symptoms as well, our provider may recommend hormone replacement treatment.
Also Check: Does Melatonin Increase Estrogen
How To Hide Thinning Hair After Menopause
If hair continues to thin after menopause and natural treatments have been ineffective, there are things that can help camouflage this issue. Some hair stylists will suggest shortening the length of hair. This adds volume and reduces the weight of hair. It can also help hide problem spots.
Some more permanent but also costly options include topical hair growth products, hair extensions, wigs, surgical hair transplants, and low-level laser scalp treatments.
Causes Of Hair Loss In Women
Androgenetic alopecia, a type of hair loss commonly called male or female pattern baldness, was only partially understood until the last few decades. For many years, scientists thought that androgenetic alopecia was caused by the predominance of the male sex hormone, testosterone, which women also have in trace amounts under normal conditions. But while testosterone is at the core of the balding process, dihydrotestosterone is now thought to be the main culprit.
DHT, a derivative of the male hormone testosterone, is the enemy of hair follicles on your head. Simply put, under certain conditions DHT wants those follicles dead. This simple action is at the root of many kinds of hair loss.
Testosterone converts to DHT with the aid of the enzyme 5-alpha reductase. Scientists now believe that it’s not the amount of circulating testosterone that’s the problem but the level of DHT binding to receptors in scalp follicles. DHT shrinks hair follicles, making it impossible for healthy hair to survive.
The hormonal process of testosterone converting to DHT, which then harms hair follicles, happens in both men and women. Under normal conditions, women have a minute fraction of the level of testosterone that men have, but even a lower level can cause DHT- triggered hair loss in women.
You May Like: Breakthrough Bleeding On Bioidentical Hormones
Hormone Healing Tip : Beauty Sleep
Poor sleep quality leads to a number of health issues, whether its stress, skin issues, energy levels or a poor immune system.
Did you know that your sleep cycle affects your hairs overall health? A good and restorative nights sleep is required for the protein synthesis of the hair and the release of enzymes and growth hormones that are necessary for overall hair health.
The way that sleep affects your bodys natural hormones is probably the most important part of preventing hair loss. Your body produces a hormone called melatonin. This hormone helps your body regulate your sleep cycle, and it has been shown to increase hair growth. If your body decreases in its melatonin levels, its possible that this could result in hair loss.
Sleep deprivation, which is so common as our female hormones decline, can eventually lead to stress, and stress has been known to result in telogen effluvium hair loss. This is when stress pushes the hair follicle into a premature resting state, which is then followed by a premature shedding phase.
I formulated GLOW PM to help with perimenopause and menopause sleep disruption and support healthy hair growth. GLOW PM contains a blend of melatonin, GABA, 5-HTP and gentle calming herbs to help melt away stress, calm the body and mind, and allow for restful sleep, night after night. And as a result, that bed-head will be fuller and thicker!
What Are Some Tips For Dealing With Hair Loss In Women
There are some things you can do on your own. You might check with your stylist or try some of these:
- Coloring your hair adds volume to the strands, making your hair seem fuller.
- Massaging your head, like when you are washing your hair, can stimulate blood flow to the scalp and hair follicles.
- Getting your hair cut shorter, and having layers added, can make your hair seem fuller.
- Using the right kind of shampoo can also help. Look for a shampoo that adds volume without using sulfate detergents.
- Using the right kind of product at the right time can also help. There are products that add volume that you add while your hair is still wet. However, using too much product can add weight.
Don’t Miss: Nugenix Estro Regulator Reviews
Understanding How Hair Grows
Your hair follicles contain cells of protein at the bottom. These cells make up the root of your hair from which the hair grows. The root needs nourishment to keep your hair growing, which is delivered by the blood vessels in your scalp.
Your hair goes through cycles of growth and shedding made up of three phases:
- The anagen phase, the phase of active hair growth that lasts for two to six years
- The catagen phase, a transitional phase that lasts two to three weeks in which the root begins to shrink away from the scalp
- The telogen phase, or resting phase, which lasts for about 100 days and includes the shedding of between 25-100 hairs each day
Different hair follicles are in different stages at any given time, with the largest percentage of hair in the anagen phase.
How Common Is It
Female hair loss is a common condition, especially in the years surrounding menopause. According to the Cleveland Clinic, it is estimated that over 50% of women experience hair loss. Age, diet, ethnicity, and genetic factors all influence your chances of experiencing hair loss throughout your life, including during and after menopause.
Recommended Reading: Cost Of Estradiol