Forehead balding, here's what you need to know
If your forehead is balding you may actually have a treatable disorder. Newly they are calling this Female pattern hair loss (FPHL) and female androgenetic alopecia are two terms that are very much related. They are used synonymous to refer to women with progressive thinning of scalp hair that follows a pattern distribution. For those who want to treat these conditions safely and non-invasively, there is a new FDA cleared treatment called AuraLux Laser. Call to Hada Cosmetic Medicine to be evaluated for this.
1. Androgenic alopecia likely means you have excess male hormones, or at least excess male hormones relative to female hormones. Other hormones should be checked to see if this is the reason, adrenal hormones, growth hormone, thyroid hormones can all contribute to hair issues.
2. Most patients who have hormonal hair loss will come in complaining of relatively new onset hair loss...days, weeks or perhaps months.
3. Medically this is alopecia refers to hair loss without permanent destruction of the hair follicle, although we can’t be sure hair follicles are not being destroyed. Usually this type of hair loss is non-scarring type, meaning that there is hope for the recovery of this hair lost once the problem is treated.
4. Hormonal hair loss should really be accompanied by other symptoms of hormone imbalance. How is the rest of your skin? Dry, flaky, itchy, or pimply? Symptoms of the male hormone excess can be chin or upper lip hair, deepening voice, bigger Adam's apple and acne, but blood testing and examination is the way to sort out the diagnosis.
5. The hair grows from follicles in healthy scalp and it cycles though growth of the hair from a follicle, then a period when the follicle withers or involutes and when that happens to that follicle with shedding of hair, and finally a rest period or the follicles hibernate. This is a very slow, three step process of anagen, catagen, and telogen. An imbalance of what hair follicles are resting and what follicles are growing will produce what you see as sudden shedding without any actual problem. If this imbalance goes on for years, you'll have very scant hair. Stress, either physical exertion, mental exertion, or stress on the hair from treatments is the most common problem of this hair cycle problem. It is naturally seen briefly seasonal loss (warm months). Pulling, tugging, brushing, braiding, too vigorous toweling, hot iron, Brazilian blowouts, perms, coloration, tight ponytails...pretty much all touching will cause us to shed hairs. System infections, some medications (chemotherapy is most notable), and even vaccinations can cause hair loss.
6. Genetically caused hair loss is common, about a fifth of the patients seeking care for hair loss have at least one relative with extremely thin hair. If your identical twin has hair loss, you have a 50-50 chance of having hair loss. Autoimmune dysfunction will exaggerate the problem and cause immune cells to attack the growing hair follicles and thus make them either wither prematurely (this is the catagen stage), or in some cases completely die.
7. Healthy nutrition is important for healthy hair. Both zinc and biotin will help your hair grow. If none of those are yielding any answers it's time to go in for the full differential diagnosis. In the differential diagnoses are some fairly intimidating conditions: anagen effluvium, androgenetic alopecia, chemical alopecia, folliculitis (mild), inherited disorders of the hair shaft, telogen effluvium, alopecia areata, and traumatic alopecia. Some might just be aging and an actual decrease in each hair's thickness can be seen. Hairs go from nice round, all alike strands, to irregular and inconsistent shapes and contours. Some follicles just quit producing hair, like your eye lash hairs (yeah Latisse or Omni human fibroblast compound can wake that up)! The hormonal work up will be important: what are your levels and do they need to be back in balance.
Your gyno might be able to help, or your dermatologist. Don't just "brush" it off to no big deal, hair loss can actually be a symptom of other underlying issues and if it goes on long enough, everyone deserves at least a brief check up.
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