Female pattern hair loss in women has a greater psychological impact than in men. In a Glamour magazine survey, over half of the women stated “if my hair looks good, I look attractive no matter what I’m wearing or how I look otherwise,” and “if my hair isn’t right, nothing else can make me feel that I look good”. A women’s hair is central to her ‘feeling of self’ and in many women, it affects their self-esteem and even their ability to function on a day to day basis.
Female pattern hair loss begins as widespread thinning of the hair over the mid-frontal scalp and may occur with either sporadic or continuous hair shedding, even before it becomes noticeable. When the hair is parted in the midline, thinning hair can be easily seen. Female pattern hair loss severity is graded using the Ludwig/Savin scale which divides the severity of hair density reduction into the grades shown below.
Hair loss may begin at any age and generally becomes more pronounced after menopause. The hallmark of female pattern hair loss is the miniaturization of hair follicles whereby terminal hair follicles turn into follicles that produce vellus or wispy hair. Women with female pattern hair loss have more follicles in the telogen or shedding phase of the hair cycle, and fewer in the anagen or growth phase. Female pattern hair loss is most common during menopause.
So what chemical actions cause female pattern hair loss? Both testosterone and dihydrotestosterone (DHT) activate receptors with the hair follicles, however DHT is thought to be the main culprit involved in female pattern hair loss. Estrogen levels also play a role, so the gradual decline of estrogen after menopause causes a wide variety of changes in tissues that respond to estrogen including hair. Female pattern hair loss in menopausal women, is basically due to a change in hormonal levels including estrogen and progesterone, which trigger this action.
When a woman starts to notice excess hair loss or thinning, she sometimes adopts a variety of coping mechanisms. Many women wanting to avoid the negative reactions from family, friends, and others, may wear start to wear hats or use wigs to achieve this.
While there are a number of drugs used to help restore and/or stabilize the hormonal changes, for female pattern hair loss there are only 2 options that have the FDA imprimatur for treating the condition. One of the options is the topical drug minoxidil and the other option is the laser phototherapy medical device, the HairMax LaserComb. One of the main advantages of the HairMax is that the device has been proven effective in 7 clinical trials to treat female pattern hair loss and promote hair growth. The second advantage, is that the HairMax has an excellent safety record, as there have been no reports of serious side effects occurring, unlike drugs used for treatment.
In conclusion, women no longer have to try to hide their female pattern hair loss or suffer in silence, and they do not have to resort to drugs, since the HairMax is an ideal safe and effective non-drug option that will give results that are the same or better than drugs.