How Hormones Impact Hair Loss
Beyond making teenagers moody and difficult to live with, hormones perform a host of vital roles in our growth, health, and well-being. Life-events and the passage of time will cause our bodies’ to produce different amounts of hormones throughout our lives. Some people, however, can either produce too many or too few hormones, and when that happens, it can have negative impacts throughout the body, including on hair growth.
Hormone imbalances are the cause behind or contribute to many cases of hair loss. The good news is that there are medications and other treatments that can restore balance to hormone levels and stop hair loss caused by an excess or insufficient amount of them.
Multiple hormones play roles in the strength, growth, and health of our hair. The most common types of hormone imbalances and related issues that often contribute to hair shedding and loss include:
- Thyroid imbalances. Both hypothyroidism (too few thyroid hormones) and hyperthyroidism (too many) can contribute to hair loss through their impact on the production of a hormone called dihydrotestosterone (DHT). A synthesized version of testosterone, DHT is a key hormone in sexual development and physical appearance. If too much testosterone is converted into DHT, it disrupts the natural growth cycle of hair. In turn, this causes the hair follicles to shrink, ultimately resulting in thinning hair and shedding.
- Menopause. Menopausal women produce lower levels of two hormones critical for hair growth and follicle health: estrogen and progesterone. As the supply of these two hormones decreases, hair growth slows and follicles become thin, brittle, and more susceptible to damage. Making matters worse, this decrease in hair-promoting hormones comes with an increase in the production of androgens – hormones that trigger follicle miniaturization and make hair more likely to fall out.
- Postpartum hair loss. Also called postpartum alopecia – hair loss after childbirth is a common issue. Up to 90 percent of new mothers have some degree of hair loss in the first three to five months after their child is born. During pregnancy, estrogen levels increase the percentage of hairs in the growth cycle, while also freezing hair that is in the resting phase of hair growth. After giving birth, womens’ estrogen levels fall dramatically, and all the hair that was growing so beautifully starts to fall out.
- Insulin Resistance. When the body fails to regulate insulin production properly, the body can build up a resistance to this hormone, which can, in turn, lead to an increased risk of androgenetic alopecia, or pattern baldness.
Schedule an Appointment for a Hair Loss Evaluation Today
If a hormone imbalance is contributing to hair loss, the Miami Hair Institute can help. We offer a range of effective treatments, customized to your individual condition. To receive a personalized evaluation and treatment plan, contact us online or call our office directly at 305-925-0222.