Hair loss in women does not have to mean the end of the world. Your HAIRitage is every bit as part of you as your personality, history and skin.
“When I lost my hair, I was so focused on what I had lost, that I hadn’t necessarily realized what I had gained. I had gained the ability to finally love myself…. No one should ever be alienated because of the way that they look.” – Kylie Bamberger
If you have noticed that your hair is thinning, breaking or falling out, or your scalp is showing signs of scarring, baldness or pain, it is essential to speak to your dermatologist. Alopecia simply means hair loss, and does not give you a proper diagnosis.
What Causes Hair Loss in Women?
There are many causes of hair loss in women. Female baldness may be in your genes, while other types of hair loss can be caused by harsh chemicals, tight hairstyles, lifestyle and many, many other factors. Dreadlocks, when done and kept correctly, are great for ethnic hair. Some dreadlocks styling and techniques can cause far too much damage to your hair however, causing a range of hair loss issues, from traction alopecia, to worsening of lichen planopilaris. Your dreads may be causing permanent hair loss or scarring alopecia. Look out for these warning signs:
- Your hairline is thinning and receding due to constant tension and pulling of the hair root.
- Your hair is sparse or thinning in certain parts of your scalp.
- There are no follicular openings on the scalp.
- You have burning, itching or any uncomfortable feeling
- Your scalp feels smooth or scarred to touch.
- You have had your hair in the same style for years.
- You are retwisting frequently, causing more trauma, pain and pulling with every retwist.
- You dreads are getting heavy, causing them to pull on the the hair follicle.
- Your hair seems to be getting thinner and thinner.
- Your hair is not growing despite taking hair breaks, applying oils and other care methods.
How Can You Prevent Hair Loss?
Some of the ways that you can prevent or ease hair loss in women include the following:
- Get a diagnosis as soon as possible. Early detection is key when it comes to hair loss. Your dermatologist will take a detailed medical history, along with necessary blood tests, do a hair microscopy and skin biopsy if needed, do hair imaging and examine the hair and scalp for salient features.
- Find a dermatologist who will love you and your hair. Hair loss is an emergency. It is essential to find a good dermatologist that is able to preserve your roots, helping you protect your heritage and embrace your hair.
- Natural is always best. If not, wig it, don’t weave it. Wigs are great for hair loss, unlike weaves. They are protective and easy. With that said, wigs can thin your hairline. Make sure that you get the correct size, so that the wig is not too tight. Look for an adjustable wig that has a velvet strip.
- Eat to feed your skin and hair. Make sure you get the correct balance of the following vitamins and nutrients to begin growing your healthiest hair yet. Eating right has many benefits, including healthy hair and healthy skin.
- Reduce trauma. Avoid all hairstyles that pull or damage the hair and scalp. Minimise relaxers and hair straighteners, Minimise heat on the scalp and rotate your hairstyles often.
- Moisturise with natural oil care products. Massage natural oils or butter into your hair and scalp a few times a week for increased moisture, softness and shine.
- Invest in excellent haircare products. Look for products high in natural oils, which are good for hair. Products containing antioxidants, non-inflammatory and moisturising ingredients will help with hydration of scalp as well as hair growth.⠀
- Seek a hairstylist who knows what they are doing. It is essential to choose hairstylists that follow are committed to natural, non-traumatic hair practices and products.
Whether you have balding cased by autoimmune disease, hair trauma or even personal choice, remember… you are still fabulous. What makes you truly YOU is the quality of your character and soul. Embracing your heritage, African hair and roots is the best way to deal with hair loss.
To learn more about how to deal with hair loss in women, contact the Durban Skin Doctor today and book a consultation