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Vitamin Supplements for Female Hair Loss
When more hair is showing up on your brush than normal or your part is looking a little wider, these may be early signs of hair loss, and for women, it can be a traumatic and embarrassing experience. Female hair loss can be a result of many different things, including genetics, stress, pregnancy or certain medical conditions. Since some types of hair loss are caused by illness or nutrition problems, the best way to prevent it is to maintain a healthy lifestyle, and that includes getting the essential vitamins and minerals that keep our bodies in top shape. There are many vitamin supplements for hair loss, specifically catered to help women. But will these vitamin-packed pills really help?
The Facts About Female Hair Loss
It’s typical to associate baldness with men, but women struggle with it, too. In fact, hair loss affects one out of four women, hitting 30 million women mostly between the ages of 25 and 35. The biggest problem with hair loss is that it happens differently for men and women, making it tough to find solutions that cater to both sexes. Men experience thinning hair around the hairline and at the top of the head, eventually having hair fall out and stop growing. Women, on the other hand, tend to experience a decrease in hair volume, where the number of hairs doesn’t necessarily change, but each strand shrinks in diameter. Thin hairs like this will not grow past a certain point, so long flowing hair becomes a thing of the past. And since strands are losing their body, more of the scalp can be seen as hair continues to grow smaller.
Hair’s lack of thickness makes it difficult to treat, so many women turn to the volumizing effects of certain supplements, which contain vitamins that help keep hair healthy and strong.
Vitamin Supplements and Female Hair Loss
There are many natural vitamins that contribute to overall hair health—such as shine, texture and color—and some even promote growth and volume. Some of the essential vitamins are:
- Iron has been strongly linked to proper hair growth. Women who have iron deficiency experience hair loss at a faster rate. Including iron-rich foods in your diet and taking an iron supplement can help improve hair growth, particularly in women with alopecia areata, hair loss caused by odd immune responses.
- Biotin is a key vitamin in hair growth. This water-soluble B vitamin contributes to the strength and flexibility of hair follicles, reducing breakage and promoting growth. A lack of biotin has been known to lead to hair loss, and, in some severe cases, even cause eyelashes to fall out. Biotin is usually produced naturally in the body, but supplements are encouraged in female hair loss patients.
- Zinc helps with cell growth, and may also affect levels of androgens in the body, which are hormones involved in some genetic forms of female hair loss. Zinc is a major component in Karatin production, which is an essential part of hair. Zinc is found in many foods, but a supplement may be necessary to help boost the amount of zinc in your body.
These nutrients—along with vitamin A and C, lysine and B12—all aid in the fight against female hair loss. But their effectiveness is based mainly on the type of hair loss and the cause. Genetic female hair loss is not as easy to treat with vitamin supplements, while thinning hair brought on by stress, malnutrition, pregnancy or illness may be combated with these pills. It all comes down to the diagnosis
Should You Treat Your Hair Loss with Vitamin Supplements?
Female hair loss can be brought on by many different factors, unlike men whose cases are linked to hereditary baldness 90% of the time. Due to this fact, female hair loss is tough to diagnose, and treatments can vary depending on the severity of the condition. The best way to determine the right course of treatment for your hair loss is to meet with a certified hair loss specialist who can conduct the proper diagnostic tests. For women, these tests usually consist of a scalp biopsy, hormone levels, blood count and iron levels, among others. Once a professional has given a proper diagnosis, suggested treatments will then be prescribed.
While vitamin supplements may help with follicle strength, growth and thickness, they may not be the best solution for some cases. Surgical hair restoration is an available option, and hair transplantation has proven affective in treating women with hereditary pattern baldness. There is a small percentage of good candidates for the treatment, but more research is being done to improve the procedure for women. The best way to know if you are a candidate for hair transplantation is to meet with a specialist. There are many highly trained hair loss specialists in our network, so you’ll be sure to find one that fits your needs. Contact us today to learn more about female hair loss treatments, or to schedule a consultation with a doctor in your area.