Avoid Menopausal Hair

Menopause is a significant transition in a woman’s life, marking the end of her reproductive years. Alongside the more commonly recognized symptoms of hot flashes and mood swings, changes in hair quality and quantity are actually common.

The Science of the Hormonal Effects to Strands

During menopause, a woman’s body undergoes a series of hormonal shifts, particularly a decline in estrogen levels. Estrogen plays a crucial role in maintaining hair health by promoting growth and thickness. With its reduction, hair follicles that determine hair shaft thickness shrink. Thinner hair shafts make hair finer and each strand more fragile.

Low estrogen shift post partum, and low estrogen levels during breastfeeding has a similar effect. If you had hair loss post partum, you are more susceptible to hair loss during perimenopause and menopause.

Some hair follicles respond by atrophy and they never recover leading to more perceived hair loss and less density to the scalp.

Additionally, the balance between estrogen and androgens (male hormones present in both men and women) may shift. More dominate androgens, even from the adrenal glands, results in androgenetic alopecia, commonly known as female pattern baldness.

What to Expect

Thiner Hair:  Women may notice their hair becoming less dense, with scalp visibility increasing, especially around the part line. Less common is receding temple hair,

Texture Changes: Hair texture can also undergo transformations. Previously straight hair may become wavier or even curly, while curly hair might become less defined. This shift is often attributed to changes in the hair’s protein structure.

Dryness and Brittleness: Reduced oil production on the scalp can lead to dry, brittle hair that is more prone to breakage. This dryness is exacerbated by environmental factors and styling habits.

Slower Growth: The rate of hair growth tends to slow down with age. Hormonal fluctuations result in shorter, slower-growing strands.

Nurturing Your Tresses

The changes in hair during menopause are influenced by hormonal shifts, there are several strategies women can employ to support hair health during this time:

Nutritious Diet: A balanced diet rich in vitamins, minerals, and proteins is essential for promoting healthy hair growth. Foods high in omega-3 fatty acids, such as salmon and various nuts especially walnuts, helps maintain scalp health and hydration.

Gentle Hair Care: Opt for sulfate-free, moisturizing shampoos and conditioners to prevent further drying out of the hair and scalp. Avoid excessive heat styling and harsh chemical treatments that can damage fragile strands.

Scalp Massage: Stimulating the scalp through gentle massage can improve blood circulation, promoting hair growth and overall scalp health.

Yoga Scalp Oxygenation: Inversion poses in yoga like Down Dog, Forward Folds, and Vinyasas help bring oxygen to the scalp.

Supplements: Biotin, collagen, Zinc, Copper, and vitamin D may help support hair health. However, it’s essential to consult with a healthcare professional before starting any new supplement regimen.

Professional Advice: If experiencing significant hair loss or scalp issues, it’s advisable to seek guidance from a dermatologist or trichologist who can provide personalized recommendations and treatment options.

PRP Therapy: Platelet Rich Plasma Therapy is ideal for localized therapy, and the sooner begun the more effective it is. Many years post menopause the hair is very resistant to current therapies.

Embracing the Journey Together

Navigating the changes of menopause with your provider is a way to track response to therapy and have the options of hormonal management. It’s crucial to remember these transformations are a natural part of the aging process. Shifts in hair quality and quantity may pose challenges, they also present an opportunity for self-reflection and acceptance. Embracing one’s evolving appearance, including changes in hair, can be empowering and liberating.

Moreover, menopause signifies a new chapter in a woman’s life—one characterized by wisdom, self-assurance, and a deeper understanding of oneself. By embracing this journey with resilience and grace, women can navigate the changes in their hair and emerge with confidence, embracing their beauty at every stage of life.

In conclusion, while hair changes during menopause are undoubtedly a reality for many women, they need not dampen one’s spirit or sense of self-worth. By understanding the underlying factors contributing to these changes and implementing proactive measures to support hair health, women can embrace this phase of life with confidence and grace, radiating beauty from within.