Thursday, 1 September 2016

September Is Alopecia Awareness Month – How Much Do You Know About Alopecia?

Woman in black hat, alopecia
Women who have alopecia are often embarrassed about it and tend to suffer in silence. However, efforts are being made to tell more people about the condition, especially during September, which is Alopecia Awareness Month.

At the London Centre of Trichology, we help women with female hair loss to find solutions, a process which starts with an accurate diagnosis. We support efforts to make people aware of alopecia and of what can be done to treat it.

Alopecia Awareness Month

The registered charity Alopecia UK is holding a range of events for Alopecia Awareness Month. These include “Fun Hat Fridays”, an initiative which was also held last year and proved a success in raising funds for the charity. People are being asked to post photos of themselves in all kinds of unusual, wacky and colourful headgear to social media, including Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, and make a small donation to the cause.

The charity is also holding a “Big Weekend” event which is in Glasgow this year, from September 2 to 4, with a variety of workshops and talks. The aim is to make this the most successful Alopecia Awareness Month to date. Events are also being held in the US and other countries, with a number of charities and organisations getting involved.

Causes of Alopecia

There are many different types of alopecia, a term which is used to describe hair loss in general. So, if you notice that you are losing your hair, the first step is to find out why and get a diagnosis of your specific condition. Although hair loss in men is more common, thinning hair and bald patches, or even total loss of hair, can also affect women and is often more upsetting because it is less expected.

Causes of alopecia can include heredity, illness or changes in your body’s chemistry or traction damage from certain types of hair styling. Stress related alopecia is another problem which some people experience, often following on from traumatic experiences.

Types of Alopecia

A type of hair loss which often affects younger people is Alopecia Areata, an autoimmune condition which sees bald patches developing on the scalp. The condition often starts in childhood and recurs at times through a person’s life. There are genetic factors involved, since an estimated 20% of people suffering from the condition have a relation who also has the disease. 

The type of alopecia most commonly affecting older people is Androgenetic Alopecia, which is also frequently described as male pattern balding or female pattern balding. It’s well known that around half of men aged 50-plus experience this type of hair loss, but it isn’t always realised that the same is true for women over the age of 65.

However, the pattern of hair loss for women can be different, since, instead of receding, the hair tends to thin on top of the head.  Younger people are also frequently affected by this type of hair loss, which has a number of causes including genetic factors.

Awareness and Treatment

Hair loss has traditionally tended to be something which women in particular are embarrassed to discuss. However, over recent years a number of celebrities have spoken out about their experience of alopecia and this is helping to make people more willing to talk about women’s hair loss, raising awareness of the condition.

Canadian singer Alessia Cara, who had a hit with the song ‘Here’ in the UK last year, is one of the latest stars to speak out about her experience of hair loss at a young age. She has told how she started losing patches of hair as a child and was upset by unkind comments in high school, but has now learned to live with the condition. 

Reactions to hair loss vary, but if you are worried about female hair loss and are seeking solutions, the earlier you get treatment, the more likely it is you will achieve a successful outcome. The experts at the London Centre of Trichology are highly experienced and can advise you on the best steps to take, giving you an accurate diagnosis and advising over which treatments are most appropriate.

Female Hair Loss Solutions London – Follow the link to contact us and arrange your initial free consultation.