Today more women are experiencing hair loss for many reasons such as aging, genes, and hormonal levels, particularly androgens (male sex hormones). In fact, it affects millions of women every year in the United States.
In this short guide, we will discuss some of the best hair loss treatments for women.
Hair Growth Cycles
Dermatologists say that hair grows at a rate of half per month. Each hair has a growth phase of two to six years. Once the hair reaches that point, it rests and falls out. The follicle will grow a new strand and the cycle continues. At any given time, 85% of hair may be in the growth phase, while the remaining 15% may be in the resting phase.
Hair Loss Treatments for Women
Many medical professionals recommend women who have hair loss issues begin treatment as soon as it occurs because prolonged androgenetic alopecia may destroy hair follicles even more. Using an anti-androgen treatment after prolonged hair loss will help prevent further thinning as it stimulates re-growth.
Some of the most effective hair loss treatments for women are outlined below.
Originally designed to treat high blood pressure, Minoxidil (Rogaine) is a topical treatment that stimulates hair growth. It works by increasing the size of shrunken hair follicles. This causes the growing phase to occur longer, thus producing thicker and longer hair. Rogaine is available without a prescription, should be used two times per day, and is considered one of the most effective hair loss treatments for women.
Birth Control Contraceptives
Because birth control pills decrease the amount of ovarian androgens, it can be one of the most effective hair loss treatments for women. However, there are certain health precautions that should be followed as females who are over the age of 35, smoke, and take the pill are at a higher risk for developing blood clots. Women should talk to their doctors about which pill will work most effectively.
Propecia is available with a doctor’s prescription, in a pill form, and should be taken once daily. Even though Propecia has not been proven effective in women and is not approved for women by the FDA, it is still one of the most common hair loss treatments for women. Women who are or may become pregnant should not take the drug, because it can cause birth defects.
Surgical hair loss treatments for women
Hair transplant surgery
Women may opt to get hair transplant surgery. During this surgery, a doctor will remove small pieces of skin from areas of the scalp with full hair to areas with thinning hair.
Hair Scalp Reduction
Scalp reduction involves removing areas of bald skin from the head. The areas with growing hair are stretched and sewn together to fill in the bald sections.