Your Menopause Might Cause Hair Loss

Written by yvonnethornton on January 21st, 2013

Think of your menopause as a reversed pregnancy. When you became pregnant earlier in life, all of your hormones were running rampant as they made way for your baby’s development. Your hair grew thicker, your breasts grew larger, and your moods grew less stable as your belly grew bigger. Since menopause occurs when the body slowly stops all of its baby-making abilities, your hormones will do the opposite, but you will certainly still feel the effects. Menopause brings on a whole new set of hormone-driven problems and issues that you’ve probably never had to deal with before, and it can make you feel absolutely crazy. Generally, the symptoms usually last all the way through the menopause, which is markedly over when you haven’t had your period for an entire year. One unfortunate and common change that happens to women going through menopause is hair loss and hair thinning.

Because your hormones are so abnormal during menopause, you could lose a considerable amount of hair. For anyone going through menopause currently, I don’t have to tell you how heartbreaking this can be as it seems to be a fast-paced and permanent slide into the age of the elderly. However, don’t worry too much if you notice your hair thinning during menopause because the change is not necessarily permanent. Studies show that hair often grows back after menopause has run its course. Your hormones will become regulated again someday after they have settled back into their usual routine. If your hair doesn’t seem to go back to normal after menopause has ceased, your doctor might want to check you for a metabolic or endocrine disease as hair loss can be an indicator.

The fact that we could lose our hair during menopause truly only adds insult to injury. Though it’s disheartening, you should keep in mind that the change—along with all the other changes—is temporary. In post-menopause, all of your hormones will regulate once again, and you will return to normal. Your hair will grow back, and your mood will stabilize. To offset some of the symptoms during menopause, stay as healthy as possible by getting adequate exercise and eating a healthy diet.

– Yvonne S. Thornton, M. D., M. P. H.

 

7 Comments so far ↓

  1. Jen says:

    I never thought of menopause that way, but it makes a lot of sense. I guess it’s pretty much the opposite of what happens to the body during pregnancy. Great article, I appreciate it.

  2. Carol says:

    Finally – a doctor who doesn’t “beat around the bush!” I have been experiencing slow hair thinning over the past 2 years due to menopause, and didn’t know what to do. One physician told me to use minoxidil, but the hair stops growing once you stop using it, and it can be costly. The other physician just smiled and shrugged her shoulders when I voiced my concerns. Thank you Dr. Thornton for making this subject clear and giving hope that this will pass. You pointed out the rainbow at the end of the storm!

  3. Its a quite new info for actually now I’ve realized why my hair has falling down I was also facing problem like night sweats.

  4. LizV says:

    Thank you for your words of encouragement. I’m not sure if I’m in menopause or what. I’m 47 and have been experiencing fatigue, weight gain, hair loss and lactation for over a year now. My eyebrows and eyelashes are also falling out (in addition to my scalp hair). My doc’s claim my thyroid is fine and that there’s “nothing wrong” with me. I know I’m sick but don’t know why. Does menopausal hair loss include the eyebrows and eyelashes?

  5. yvonnethornton says:

    Yes.

  6. yvonnethornton says:

    No, you are not missing anything. The article from the British Journal of Dermatology in its results DID state that: “Facial hair gain was cited by 39% of females with the chin being the most frequent site for new growth (32% of women).” If your query was about regaining SCALP hair or frontal hair, the study did not address that. But hair DOES grow after menopause, perhaps in places not as welcome as others and not as quickly as other areas, but it does grow. One must understand that there is always a recall bias with studies conducted via questionnaires.

  7. Aura Vee says:

    So happy to know my hair will grow back. And easy right to the point information. Now I feel I can do something to aid with my body changes. I was told there is not much you can do. I am in pain almost everyday, my hair is slowly falling and noticed it when I only needed bobby pins then larger hair clips to hold my hair in place. I will eat healthier and relax more to aid with my perimenopause. Thank you for the article.

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