Female Pattern Hair Loss vs. Male Pattern Hair Loss: Key Differences

Pattern Female

Female Pattern Hair Loss vs. Male Pattern Hair Loss – Key Differences and Health

Hair loss is an issue that affects people of all ages and genders, but there can be key differences between how it presents in males and females. Knowing more about the underlying causes and potential treatments for female pattern hair loss and male pattern hair loss (known respectively as androgenic alopecia) can help people to address their hair loss in the most effective manner.

Differences Between Female and Male Pattern Hair Loss

Hair loss in both men and women is partly controlled by genetic factors and hormones, though its presentation and triggering factors can be different. In women, pattern hair loss is generally spread over the whole area of the scalp, while in men, it causes a bald spot on the top of the head, often referred to as a “U” shape. This particular male presentation means that for some men, baldness runs in families. Male hair loss can start as early as puberty when testosterone levels change and is more common in older age.

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Other Differences Between Female and Male Pattern Hair Loss

  • Female pattern hair loss is usually caused by an increasing sensitivity of the hair follicles to hormones called androgens. Women have higher levels of estrogen, which counterbalance the androgens but can become less effective as a woman gets older.
  • Male pattern hair loss is caused by a combination of high levels of androgens and a sensitivity to them.
  • Female pattern hair loss usually advances more slowly than male pattern hair loss.
  • The main symptom of female pattern hair loss is thinning hair on the center of the scalp.
  • Men may show symptoms such as a receding hairline at the front, and thinning at the crown.
  • Hair transplants are more commonly carried out for male pattern hair loss than female pattern hair loss, since the female pattern can be more diffuse.

Causes of Female and Male Pattern Hair Loss

Female pattern hair loss is thought to be caused by a combination of changing hormones, heredity, and age, while male pattern hair loss is caused primarily by hormones. So far, no reliable studies have been done to determine the exact cause of androgenic alopecia in either sex.

Health Effects of Female and Male Pattern Hair Loss

Hair loss can have an emotional impact on both men and women, leading to feelings of insecurity and loss of self-confidence. While hair loss can have psychological effects, it is not known to pose any serious health risks in either sex. However, some studies have linked male pattern hair loss with other medical conditions, including an increased risk of prostate cancer, heart disease and diabetes.

Treatments for Female and Male Pattern Hair Loss

Treating androgenic alopecia can vary from individual to individual, depending on its cause. Common treatments for both women and men include topical medications, such as minoxidil, and laser therapy. Hair transplants may be recommended for more severe cases of hair loss. In addition to these treatments, lifestyle changes, such as avoiding smoking and eating a balanced diet, can help to reduce hair loss in both sexes.

By understanding the differences between female and male pattern hair loss, and the treatments available, it is possible to find the most effective approach to managing hair loss. Whether you are dealing with female pattern hair loss or male pattern hair loss, seeking advice from a medical practitioner is recommended to ensure the best treatment outcome.