At present, female baldness is a serious condition that is increasingly becoming a problem. Around 30 million women of all ages are affected in the United States, and there are more of them all over the world. If you think you are starting to lose your hair at an abnormal rate, you should start taking preventive steps in order to keep it from getting worse.
Normally, hair grows at a rate of about half an inch every month. The growth continues for two to six years after which the hair goes into a resting period. It then falls out after this and new hair grows back in its place. Thus, hair loss is actually part of the normal cycle. Female baldness occurs when new hair fails to grow back in the empty follicles. After a period of time, some of the hair follicles even die, while others become incapable of producing or maintaining normal growth of hair.
Some women are genetically prone to hair loss than others. A number of hormones disturb the normal hair growth cycle and the result is the thinning hair. These hormones are called testosterone, dihydrotestosterone or DHT and androstenedione. The hormones are actually male hormones but they can also be found in the female body in lesser concentrations.
Pattern Hair Loss in Women
Medical practitioners usually refer to female baldness as female pattern hair loss. However, this is a broad category, which indicates that there are many causes that are related to it. These can include hormone receptors and enzyme blockers. Since the pattern is normally diffused, you can find it encircling the top of a womans head. Sites for hormone receptor sites and enzymes also differ on various places of the scalp.
Other causes that are associated with women's hair loss include a female hormonal condition called polycystic ovary syndrome. Particular disorders in the autoimmune system causes scalp inflammation which make hair grow in clumps or patches. The normal growth pattern of a woman's hair can also be affected by childbirth, severe emotional stress, anemia, crash diet, drugs and disorders in the thyroid.
Because of the variety of causes, it is important for women who are suffering from substantial loss of hair to get the right diagnosis pertaining to their condition. They should find out if there is any underlying medical condition that is causing female baldness and which could be treated first. This can be determined by having a blood test or if required, a biopsy of the scalp.