Overcoming Hormonal Hair Loss for Women

Overcoming hormonal hair loss could be quite challenging for women. Women are bombarded with the message that having a “Good Hair Day” means having a good day. Period. So what we can do when our hormones start messing with our tresses?

While the stereotype of a balding man is common and accepted; when a woman starts to lose her hair, there is no grace given to her appearance nor are their answers to her dilemma. It can become emotional and frustrating, affecting a woman’s sense of self. To add insult to injury, the most common reason for hair loss is also the most common reason for emotional imbalance: rapidly shifting hormones.

In fact, when women suffer hair loss, it is most often about with hormone level changes like pregnancy, menopause. Sometimes it is another major hormone imbalance that can affect fertility, weight gain, and your menstrual cycle.

Fortunately, hair loss in women is usually temporary and can be fairly easy to diagnose and treat. But that doesn’t make it any easier. We’ve gathered the most common reasons that cause this kind of hair loss… With our tips for overcoming hormonal hair loss would be a bit easier.

 

Here are some of the reasons that cause hormonal hair loss

 

Let’s begin by breaking down a few of the most common hormonal conditions that are affecting women and their hair.

    1. Menopause

      Unlike men, women have the estrogen – it is a natural protection from hair loss. After menopause, however, estrogen levels drop and therefore most women experience some degree of thinning hair years after menopause. Hair loss which occurs before this, however, can occur at any time as a menopausal symptom.

    2. Pregnancy and Childbirth.

      While it’s well-known that prenatal vitamins contribute to many pregnant women boasting of thick hair and nails, many new mothers are shocked by the excessive shedding that occurs in the 4th trimester. This is due to a condition called, telogen effluvian. In most cases, the hair will start to re-grow naturally after about 90-180 days of giving birth.

    3. Stress.

      Stress can cause hair loss in different ways. In particular, it can lead to the build-up of acid-free radicals, which contribute to gradual hair loss. Stressful situations have more impact on your body than we often realize. Chronic stress can lead to hair loss in other ways like trichotillomania (obsessive hair pulling).

    4. Too much testosterone.

      Women with higher than normal levels of testosterone, such as women who have been diagnosed with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS), are more likely to experience male-patterned baldness. Typically estrogen helps to balance the effects of the male hormone, dihydrotestosterone (DHT) a potent form of testosterone that normally leads to hair loss. Unfortunately for women with this hormone imbalance, hair is often the first target.

    5. Hyper – Oestrogen

      Progesterone and are two dominant female hormones necessary to prepare the uterus for menstruation. However, there are optimal levels in which the hormones should be produced. When progesterone levels are too low, it can lead to the condition of hyper-estrogen or “estrogen dominance”, which can trigger excessive hair shedding and ultimately hair loss.

    6. Thyroid Malfunction

      Similar to the postpartum period releasing hair follicles rapidly, hypothyroidism does the same thing to your body while employing telogen effluvium.

 

Overcoming hormonal hair loss – what can we do?

 

First and foremost, you should discuss your concerns with your doctor, so that they can properly diagnose, treat, and monitor your conditions.

For instance, there are a number of medical treatments that can help reduce hair loss during or after menopause. These include a specially compounded prescription minoxidil solution, prostaglandin analogs, low-level laser therapy, off-label finasteride (for postmenopausal women only) and nutritional supplements. For both the irregular testosterone and estrogen levels, treatment for these conditions very much depends on an individual’s case. It may involve oral contraceptives that contain estrogen and progesterone, metformin, spironolactone, or a pill supplement of progesterone or glucocorticosteroids. Maintaining a healthy diet, exercising regularly and losing weight can also help.

 

What about other choices?

 

While the treatment options are vast and varied for hormonal hair loss, may include hormone therapy via prescription drugs and long-term solutions that won’t ease your discomfort now. Self-care sometimes means making choices for yourself right now, so you have the grit to withstand the long-term plan.

If you’re ready to explore hair replacement or restoration services, give us a call at DK international. Our Minneapolis clinic has the best and latest in hair systems, wigs, and hair solutions, hair extensions and more. We can help you find the best solution for overcoming hormonal hair loss that fits in your lifestyle and budget. You don’t have to do this alone or jeopardize your mental health while doing it. We are here for you.

 

Surviving a Minnesota Winter vol.2. – Natural hair care tips

Natural hair care tips for surviving the harsh Minnesotan winter vol.2 – it is all about moisture and volume! Winter is here in Minnesota (dramatic music starts to play) and now that it is, it will probably stay long past its welcome. That means you need to take out your cute and cozy winter gear, get ready to wear layers and find the beauty in being able to see your breath every time you walk outside.

During the winter time, your hair needs extra attention. Why? Cold, dry weather coupled with wearing hats constantly can cause breakage. It can be such a nightmare for a delicate thing like your hair. We know how important your hair is to your personal aesthetic confidence so don’t worry – we’ve got you covered. We have collected only the best advice (and ingredients ) for your mane. Let’s countdown – who are your best allies against the battle of brittle hair in the bitter cold?

Natural hair care tips – where to begin?

The first rule is the most important one: MOISTURIZE. It is perfectly normal for hair to go dry in the winter but that doesn’t mean we have to like it. Dry hair can lose curl, texture, and volume. This happens due to lack of moisture in the air. Since you can’t control the weather, you’ll have to control your daily hair care regime. A good leave-in moisturizing conditioner is your best friend. Apply it daily: once in the morning and before going to bed for the night.

Your hair will be like some sort of dry desert wasteland will absorb it immediately. Don’t just moisturize from the outside – drink a lot of water and hydrate from the inside too. We know that we might sound like your grandma but this advice really does magic for your hair and skin. We told you we are going to stick to natural hair care tips only, and what is more natural than pure water? If you are moisturized inside – you will have that radiant glow everywhere and your locks will thank you for it.

Nights in white satin

For winter static hair – satin can really help a lot. We mentioned that wearing a hat can cause hair breakage or cause your hair to zing out with static electricity when you take the hat off. So we recommend using this luxurious trick: wear a satin cap or bonnet when you sleep or sleep on a satin pillowcase. Satin will be your best friend this winter.

You can even wear a satin cap under your ‘’standard’’ stocking hat or beanie. Wool caps are causing messy, tangled hair and affecting all of the awesome products you used to moisturize your mane. Using satin at night will also prevent your hair from getting dirty or greasy faster.

Natural heavy oils and butter are your best friends

Hand in hand with your moisturizer, we recommend oils and butter. We are still sticking to natural hair tips – and oils are a gift from nature that just keeps giving. No matter if you choose argan oil, olive oil, or shea butter, it will be a wonderful treatment for your hair. Use sulfate free shampoos and prior to shampooing your hair, use hot oil treatment.

This might sound like something straight from a torture manual, but it can keep your hair strong and durable. Do be careful not to use coconut oil as a sealant  – on lower temperatures coconut oil turns solid. Hard, greasy hair is not something you need this winter…or ever. We also recommend paying close attention to your scalp when you are washing your hair to avoid build up.

Protective hairstyle mode on

Wearing a bun or ponytail can help you keep things in order. Loose hair can lose hair’s natural moisture much faster compared to bound hair. Always keep it covered if possible, especially when it comes to your ends; they are the most vulnerable part of your hair and harsh environmental factors.

Not only can you get a cold in a matter of seconds, your hair freezes and breaks. There is no chance for voluminous hair if you are working from frozen hair. Of course, avoid sleeping with wet hair. It will look messy in the morning and it is not very healthy or hygienic.

We are always happy to share only the best natural hair care tips. Follow us for more!

Do Cooling Caps Prevent Hair Loss during Chemotherapy?

Hair loss is one of the most well-known side effects of chemotherapy – and for many, one of the most dreaded. Chemotherapy can be difficult enough without the added emotional effects of hair loss, so it’s understandable that cancer patients would want to preserve their hair. One way in which hair loss might be minimized during chemotherapy is cooling caps, or scalp hypothermia.

 

According to the American Cancer Society, scalp hypothermia involves cooling the scalp before, during and after chemotherapy, in an effort to reduce or prevent hair loss. Ice packs or specialized cooling caps are used to cool the scalp.

 

The cooling effect minimizes hair loss by constricting blood vessels in the scalp, reducing the amount of chemo chemicals that reach the hair follicle cells. In addition, cold hair follicles are less active. Because chemo targets rapidly dividing cells, the follicles are less attractive. The sum effect is that chemo doesn’t affect follicle cells, and hair loss is reduced or prevented altogether.

 

cooling caps

The newest cooling caps involve a two-piece system in which a cooled liquid is circulated through a cap placed on the scalp during chemotherapy sessions. A second cap is placed over the cooling cap to keep the cold in and to hold the system in place.

 

But do cooling caps really work? Some research has found little to no reduction in hair loss. However, in studies of the new cool cap systems, more than half of the women using them during chemo for early-stage breast cancer lost less than half of their hair. The success of cooling caps may also be linked to the type and dosage of chemo drugs used, as well as the thickness of hair and proper fitting of the cap.

 

There are side effects, however, including headaches, scalp pain, chills and upper body discomfort.

 

Whether you use a cooling cap or not, chemotherapy often results in some degree of hair loss. At DK International, we’re here to support you through your chemotherapy and hair loss journey. Our compassionate Minneapolis hair loss professionals will discuss your options for hair restoration, hair replacement, wigs and more. Contact us today for a free consultation.

What is Central Centrifugal Cicatricial Alopecia?

In our last blog post, we discussed the unique challenges of caring for fragile, breakage-prone African-American hair, and the steps to take in order to prevent thinning hair and hair loss. Today, we’re going to go more in-depth into an ailment that can cause permanent hair loss in African-American women: central centrifugal cicatricial alopecia.

 

central centrifugal cicatricial alopecia

As explained by the American Academy of Dermatology, central centrifugal cicatricial alopecia, or CCCA, is believed to be associated with the frequent pulling of hair in African-American women. Specifically, it is caused by hair being repeatedly styled into braids or similar tight hairstyles, causing excessive traction.

 

There is some debate about whether chemicals – such as those in relaxers – that are applied to the hair can contribute to CCCA, but most experts believe that there is no direct association between relaxers and hair loss. However, women who are being treated for CCCA are advised to discontinue the use of relaxers and other chemical treatments, as they may cause further damage to already-fragile hair.

 

CCCA can lead to permanent hair loss – in fact, it’s the most common form of permanent loss in African-American women. This occurs when hair follicles are replaced by scar tissue, preventing hair from regrowing. This is why it’s especially important to seek treatment for CCCA as soon as you notice thinning hair or hair loss.

 

In many cases, treatment involves two steps. First, discontinue styling the hair in ways that pull or strain against the scalp. This can help to slow or even reverse the progression of CCCA. Second, a dermatologist may prescribe anti-inflammatory medications, usually involving a combination of topical and injectable corticosteroids.

 

If you’re experiencing permanent hair loss caused by central centrifugal cicatricial alopecia, DK International is here to help. No matter your budget or goals, we offer a variety of hair replacement products and services, including hair loss solutions, hair systems, wigs and more. Contact our Minneapolis hair loss salon to schedule a free consultation with one of our experienced hair replacement professionals.

How to Protect Fragile African-American Hair

African-American hair has a unique structure which makes it more fragile and prone to breakage and damage. As such, more than half of African-American women state that hair loss is their primary hair concern.

 

African-American hair

Because of the increased risk of damage, it’s important for African-American men and women to take the appropriate steps to protect their hair against hair breakage and loss. We’ll share a few tips for African-American hair care, courtesy of the American Academy of Dermatology, below.

 

Washing and Conditioning

Wash hair at least once per week in order to remove hair products and avoid build-up. Rinse hair after workouts to prevent sweat and salt from building up in the hair. Use conditioner after every wash or rinse, concentrating on the fragile ends of the hair.

 

Choose shampoos and other hair care products made from natural ingredients, such as shea butter, olive oil, aloe vera or others. These can help to build and maintain moisture in the hair. Avoid sulfates, as they can be drying.

 

Similarly, look for conditioners with amino acids, wheat proteins, hydrolyzed proteins or panthenol. Those ingredients will help to strengthen and protect the hair.

 

Styling

Apply heat protectants after washing and before styling to minimize the potential damage from heat. Use ceramic irons or combs with straightening hair.

 

Don’t attempt to relax hair at home – it’s important to enlist a professional to ensure safe application. Wait at least eight weeks to do touch-ups, and never use a relaxer on hair that has already been relaxed.

 

Talk to Your Dermatologist

If you begin to notice any excessive damage or thinning hair, talk to a dermatologist. There may be an underlying cause that’s contributing to your hair loss.

 

No matter your hair type, style or condition, DK International can help with your hair loss. We carry a wide variety of hair replacement products and services, including hair loss solutions, hair systems, wigs and more. Contact us to schedule a free consultation at our discrete Twin Cities hair loss salon.