Reasons for Hair Loss in Women

Everyone loses hair. We lose hair when we shower, brush our hair or even while you are sleeping. On average, most people will lose up to 100 or more hair strands a day. They are however, usually replaced with new hairs.

Telogen Effluvium

This is a condition that usually happens after the birth of a child, losing alot of weight quickly, stress or after something major happened in your life. If you take anti-depressants, or other kinds of medications, this can also cause hair loss as it can sometimes be a side effect of the medication.

If you fall under this category, you may notice that you can lose handfuls of hair. Usually, when this happens, it is after the event and in some cases you may not notice it up until three months later.

The only thing you can really do to combat this is to talk to your doctor. Find out if it's possible that any medications could be the culprit. If you believe it's from stress, do what you can to reduce your stress. In most cases, it will resolve itself and your hair eventually returns back to normal.

Low Iron

When you have an iron deficiency or otherwise known as anemia, your red blood cell count is low. If there are not enough red blood cells, you will notice you will tire easily and this is because you are not getting enough oxygen distrubuted throughout your body (this is what red blood cells do). If you are feeling extremely tired lately, or experiencing headaches, cold hands and feet, you may have an iron deficiency. Ask your doctor to take a test to measure your red blood cell count. If your iron is low, you can take supplements or better yet, change your diet to include iron-rich foods.

An Unhealthy Scalp

If your scalp is unhealthy, it can be difficult for your hair to grow. As we mentioned earlier, you are always losing hair, but if you have an unhealthy scalp, the new hair will have trouble coming in to replace the ones that were lost. Some of the more common conditions are dandruff and psoriasis. Some of the things you can do to combat this is to get a prescription for medicated shampoo. Have your doctor take a look to determine exactly what kind of skin condition you have.


Alopecia is a disorder in which your immune system attacks your hair follicles. They really do not understand yet what causes this to happen, but if you are already stressed or have some sort of illness, it could be contributing. Most women that have alopecia, will notice a slight sort of tingling in the area they are losing hair before it happens. Alopecia is not just limited to your head, it can also cause hair loss on your eyebrows, legs and other parts of your body. Alopecia can sometimes be treated with Intralesional steroid injections.

Hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid)

Most of the people that suffer from hypothyroidism are women. Hypothyroidism is when your body does not make enough thyroid hormone. If you have this, some of the symptoms are weight gain, depression and difficulity in concentrating. Your hair, skin and nails can become very brittle and break easily. A blood test is all you need to determine if you have hypothyroidism.


Lupus is a disease that women can sometimes get during their childbearing years. Ninety percent of people affected by Lupus are women and between the ages of 15 and 45. It's when your body's immune system attacks healthy tissue and organs. It can also attack your joints, heart, kidneys, skin, lungs and brain. Some of the symptons of Lupus are feeling extrememly tired, headaches, ulcers and swollen joints. Sometimes you can get a fever, chest pains and anemia (low red blood cell count). Many women may also experience hair loss, and if left untreated, it can become deadly. There are many treatments for Lupus, but to date, there is no cure.

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PSOS)

This is a condition of when women have an imbalance of female sex hormones. Menstrual cycles may be irregular or missed. Women with this disease may also have many cysts on their ovaries and notice excessive hair growth on their bodies. Women with PSOS typically have a higher level of male hormones and may notice a pattern of baldness that men get as well as thinning hair. PSOS tends to be a hereditary type of disease and as many as five million women are affected. It can happen in children as young as 11 or 12 years of age. There is no cure for PSOS, but it can be managed. Speak with your doctor if you feel you have PSOS.

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Aside from all these things, the way you take care of your hair can also play a big part in hair loss. Don't overstyle your hair. Constant heating and drying can make your hair brittle which in turn makes your hair break easier. Try not to dye your hair too often, and when possible, just do a touch up on the roots rather than coloring all of your hair. Use good shampoos and simply pat your hair dry, do not rough it up while drying with a towel. Eating healthy and drinking lots of water also contributes to healthy hair and skin.