Hair thinning in women: who, why and what to do

Hair thinning in women is not uncommon

Most people think of thinning hair as a male problem but this is most certainly not the case with up to eight million women in the UK believed to suffer from this distressing affliction. Admittedly female hair loss is different from men’s; many women experience thinning all over whilst others notice the centre parting gradually widening. Very rarely do women experience a receding hairline.

Whatever form it takes though it can be extremely distressing particularly as we are constantly being bombarded by images and column inches about celebrities and their latest stunning hair style. Beautiful hair is a symbol of health and vitality and if it starts to thin it can be extremely upsetting.

On average most people lose between 50 and 100 strands of hair each day and this is perfectly normal. The problem arises if significantly more hair starts to fall out or indeed if it starts falling out in clumps.

Causes of hair thinning

The reasons for thinning hair are numerous and include medical factors and lifestyle factors. Quite often a hormone imbalance is to blame and a thyroid test will be able to ascertain whether this is the cause. Alternatively it can be caused by the contraceptive pill or other medications including those for blood thinning, treating blood pressure, arthritis and depression.

Lifestyle factors which can trigger thinning hair include crash diets, an iron deficiency and stress.

Tackling thinning hair

Fortunately there are steps you can take to tackle thinning hair. If it’s down to a medical condition then the hair should start growing back once the problem has been identified and treatment is started.

However, if there is no obvious trigger (and so no obvious treatment) speak to your stylist about the best way to disguise the thinning. This could involve changing your hairstyle so the thinning is not so obvious, perhaps by going for a shorter look. Or if the main area of concern is your parting then ask your hairdresser to try changing where the parting lies.

There are also a number of different products on the market which give hair volume – look out for ones containing proteins in particular. If none of these work then it is possible to buy cosmetics for the scalp which will hide any visible patches.

Above all, don’t worry. Of course, as hairdressers we think fabulous hair is a fabulous asset but we also know that their hairstyle isn’t what makes our clients great people; it’s just the finishing touch and if it’s a bit thinner than it once was it really isn’t the end of the world.

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