08 Jun Hair loss and the menopause
Thankfully and finally menopause is being talked about more widely! It’s such an important time in a woman’s life, with so many changes going on. It would be amazing if we could embrace this time rather than be fearful of it. We are reaching the next stage in our life cycle and this can be something to celebrate – I often think it would help if we had a manual though. There are so many symptoms associated with menopause. The most common that women speak about being hot flushes, night sweats and mood swings.
I am not an expert in menopause, but as a woman who is starting to experience these changes, I have been forced me to find out more.
When I first started experiencing symptoms I thought I was not well and headed to my GP. I explained that I was running a temperature and was told that I was in perimenopause!!! This was a shock, I was not prepared! Yet I see many women going through this in my clinic. They often come to me with a hair loss issue and presume it’s their age – that it’s an inevitable part of menopause. Well, here I can help as I am an expert in is hair and scalp issues. As a trichologist, I know more about hair loss than most people. There are many types of hair loss, some are temporary, some are semi permanent if the problem is not resolved, and some are permanent.
Reasons for hair loss
There are almost always two reasons for hair loss:
First is the skin (scalp) and behaviour of the hair.
Second is our lifestyle choices such as medication, diet, environment, illness, stress on more. This is good news as treatment for 50% of the causes of hair loss can be managed without medical intervention. The other 50% is linked to illness, sometimes unknown, but can require prescription medication to manage or cure the problem.
Hair loss and body function
So, when it comes to age and menopause, hair loss is connected to how the body is functioning, which is due to how you live your life and what medical conditions you may or may not have. Most importantly, if you are eating a healthy balanced diet. Hormones are known to affect hair growth and cycle, but this doesn’t mean you have to live with thinning hair or loss because of them. Hair loss is normally a sign that the body is out of balance – it may be progressive, i.e. it has been going on a long time, or it could be reflective, relating to a specific event. There is a myth that our levels of testosterone increase – what’s really happening is your oestrogen level will have lowered so your testosterone will be relatively higher in a reading, but it is not rising.
The important thing to remember is that your body is changing, and this is a good time to have a full MOT check with your GP to ensure all your hormone levels are good for your body health. For more information and to see if trichology is for you, please contact the clinic where they will be able to help advise you if a consultation will help you.