Baldness is often seen as a male problem, but this condition can affect both men and women. Alopecia (less popular name of the disease) affects up to 50% of women. This can be especially detrimental to self-esteem due to the important role of hair for the female look. The causes can be hormonal changes, thyroid disease, anemia, use of certain medications, surgery, postpartum and genetic predisposition.
According to Ana Corcini, a medical specialist in aesthetic medicine who works at Clínica Corcini in Porto Alegre, there are types of alopecia: female pattern androgenetics, areata and telogen effluvium. Each of them has a different cause and pattern. Female pattern androgenetic alopecia is the most common and is linked to genetic factors, limiting treatments. In the case of alopecia areata or telogen effluvium, the main cause is related to stress. These types are differentiated by the way the hair loss occurs, and may present rounded, hairless plaques on the scalp or be diffuse.
Hair loss is a natural change that happens daily. We usually lose between 100 and 250 hairs daily. However, there are some signs that must be taken into account. “If you are noticing a fall in greater quantity, threads accumulating in the drain of the sink or shower, on the brush, on clothes or on the pillow for a longer period, you should be alert”, explains dermatologist Ana Paula Caramori, from Ana Paula Clinic Caramori. Thinner hair, falling in tufts and a larger partition may be signs that it is time to seek a specialist. The presence of peels, pellets, redness and burning in the scalp should also be treated carefully.
When diagnosed early on, alopecia is highly treatable. “The good news for those who suffer from hair loss is that there are numerous treatment options. To find the most suitable, it is necessary to consult a dermatologist, who will investigate the probable causes of the problem, through blood tests and meticulous study, using a microscope, of the scalp and capillary shafts “, explains Ana Paula. There are options such as vitamin replacement, capsules, shampoos, tonics and minimally invasive medical procedures that present an effective result for this control.
Hair transplantation may be an option
In advanced cases, treatment may involve hair transplantation, after controlling the situation with clinical monitoring. “Today we use a modern technique, without cuts and with local anesthesia, known as FUE (Follicular Unit Extrection), in which we transplant the hairs in the region and they never fall out again, considered a definitive technique”, explains Ana Corcini. This procedure has easy recovery, is practically painless and does not leave scars.
To avoid problems with hair loss, the main indication is care through food and nutrition. Dr. Ana Caramori recommends avoiding diets that are low in nutrients or too restrictive, and vitamin or hormonal supplementation without medical advice. Hair care should also be taken, avoiding traction hairstyles and the use of hairpieces. “It is also essential to take care of the health of the scalp and nails, avoiding aggressive chemicals and treating possible inflammatory diseases, such as seborrheic dermatitis”.