We’ve all been there. You’re in the shower and notice a bit more hair going down the drain than usual. For many this is an occasional thing and nothing to be alarmed about.
For me this is the reality of hair loss.
I first noticed I was losing my hair around six/seven years ago, so I’ll try to keep this brief. It started with my parting getting noticeably wider, particularly around my crown, which is the number one sign of female patterned hair loss.
As it continued to get worse over the coming months/years, panic set in, my self-esteem plummeted and I started to feel lost.
It took me a long time to build up the courage to seek help, to go to the doctor about it, I thought he would laugh or wouldn’t take me seriously. Once I did book that initial appointment my doctor couldn’t have been more understanding or supportive and we began my search for answers.
During that time I chopped off all my long dark locks. I’m talking Frankie from the Saturdays short! I thought it would help, but I looked ridiculous and it made it that bit harder to hide my hair loss. Shorter hair does give the appearance of a thicker mane so don’t knock it, you just don’t have to go the whole hog like I did.
I’ve been to Dermatologists, Endocrinologists and hair replacement clinics looking for the reason for my hair loss, after a quick fix or a magic tablet that would make my hair come back.
Finally I have the cause, not one that I am particularly happy about because for me there is no quick fix, no magic tablet, but for you there might be.
As mentioned in my first post Where’s My Crowning Glory?, my hair loss is down to Female Patterned hair loss/androgenic alopecia, which basically means it’s in my genetics (my dad side are follically challenged) and PCOS.
Poly Cystic Ovary Syndrome is elevated male hormones in women, which in turn presents (in my case)
- Hair loss
- Anxiety and depression
- Acne (this is an added bonus to losing my hair)
My first bit of advice for anyone noticing or experiencing thinning hair is to see your GP.
- Get a full hormone check to rule out alopecia and PCOS
- Get your Iron levels checked – a deficiency can lead to hair loss
- See a Trichologist (my next step)
- See a Dermatologist
Get the medical end of things out-of-the-way first.
Stress is another contributing factor. Herein lies the perfect example of a Catch-22, you are stressed because you are losing your hair! Personally due to anxiety caused by my hair loss and PCOS I’m a stress head, so I never really stood a chance of having a luscious mane, did I?
I still agonise and feel demoralised over my hair loss. The thought of losing my hair to the point that I can’t disguise it haunts me.
Hair loss is not easy to come to terms with, for men or women.
I’m trying to be positive now. I’m trying not to sit crying for hours over my fallen strands. Yes it is always going to
crush me sting when I find a new patch or my parting gets that extra bit thinner, but for now I’m trying not to let it own me ,or define me.