The most common type of hair loss women face is androgenetic alopecia, also known as female pattern alopecia or baldness. This is seen as hair thinning predominantly over the top and sides of the head. It affects approximately one-third of all susceptible women, but is most commonly seen after menopause, although it may begin as early as puberty. Normal hair shedding is approximately 100-125 hairs per day. Fortunately, these hairs are replaced. True hair loss occurs when lost hairs are not regrown or when the daily hair shed exceeds 125 hairs. Genetically, hair loss can come from either parent’s side of the family.
There are two different types of hair loss, medically known as Anagen Effluvium and Telogen Effluvium. Anagen Effluvium is generally due to internally administered medications, such as chemotherapy agents, that poison the growing hair follicle. Telogen Effluvium, is due to an increased number of hair follicles entering the resting stage.
The most common causes of Telogen Effluvium are:
- Physical stress: surgery, illness, anemia, rapid weight change
- Emotional stress: mental illness, death of a family member
- Thyroid abnormalities
- Medications: High doses of Vitamin A, Blood pressure and Gout medications
- Hormonal causes: pregnancy, birth control pills, menopause