Millions of women around the world, especially those who are older than 50, face hair loss and all the aesthetic, emotional and health complications that go hand-in-hand with it. In fact, 30 million of US women face hair loss at certain points of their lives. In over 50% of cases, the hair loss is permanent and women have to learn how to live with it. Besides genetics, there are numerous other factors which lead to hair loss in women.
The Stages of Human Hair
During its life, our hair undergoes three different stages of existence. The first one is called anagen and it is the stage which takes place while we are still in our mother's womb. Catagen is the second phase, the one we consider normal, where the hair is healthy, resting on our scalp. Finally, telogen is the phase where the hair starts dying off and falling out.
Each woman loses up to 100 hairs during every single day. However, this minimal process of falling out takes place immediately during the growth of new hairs. Later, in the telogen phase, this growth does not happen.
Reasons behind Hair Loss in Women Older than 50
Speaking of genetics mentioned above, androgenic alopecia is a condition affecting about 85% of women who lose their hair in their 50s or afterwards. This condition leads to a gradual hair loss which is triggered by the genetic predisposition of both sides of the family. Here, the hair follicles shrink and thereby fall out prematurely, once the texture of the hair decreases in quality and the pigmentation gets lost.
Another condition which might lead to hair loss in these situations is telogen effluvium, happening due to stress or medications for treating diabetes or certain diseases affecting the heart and liver. Since almost 50% of the population take some of these medications, the percentage of women suffering from this condition at an old age is quite large.
Alopecia Areata and Traction Alopecia
Sometimes, the body cells are not capable of recognizing the hair follicles. So, wrongfully, inflammatory cells are sent to destroy the follicles. In time this leads to a condition called alopecia areata and it manifests through a hair loss in circular bold patches.
Finally, traction alopecia is a type of hair loss which affects women after a lifestyle of hair abuse. Namely, women who have exposed their hair to serums, chemicals, various treatments and dyes risk having it damaged severely later, leading to hair loss. Tight hair bands lead to the same issue.
All in all, there can be many different reasons leading to your hair loss, especially if you are a woman above 50 years of age. Thus, seek medical treatment timely and prevent permanent damage, if possible.