What to do about hair loss during menopause

Hair loss among women is not uncommon, especially with a change in hormones, stress and nerves. Menopause can cause all three things to happen at once with hormonal changes inducing stress as well as the nervousness that can come with major changes in the body.

Hair loss during menopause is often linked to hormonal changes. Estrogen and progesterone, two crucial hormones for hair growth, drop during this phase leading to weaker hair follicles, more shedding and slower growth. Things get tricky with the rise of male hormones, known as androgens, which can further speed up hair loss. But, the cards aren’t stacked against you, simple measures like a balanced diet filled with iron, vitamins, and proteins can be a game-changer. Dark green veggies, eggs, and nuts are just some of the food items that could give your hair a fighting chance. Finding peace through meditation or yoga might also be your secret weapon against stress-induced hormonal imbalance during menopause which causes severe hair loss. So before we dive into the heart of the matter…

All women go through menopause at some point in their lives and with common age ranging between 40 and 50 years old. During this stage in a woman’s life, major physical changes happen in the body. Symptoms include hot flashes, mood swings, nerves, insomnia and hair loss. Although hair loss during this time can be subtle, it can play an emotional toll on a woman. During menopause, hair typically thins on the front, sides or top of the head. Hair loss is also most noticeable after showering and brushing as large clumps may fall out.

Hair loss is common during menopause because estrogen and progesterone levels are usually lower. Those are the hormones that play a huge role in hair growth. Once the body notices that estrogen and progesterone levels have decreased, an increased production of androgens develops. DHT (dihydrotestosterone) is an androgen that is responsible for causing follicles to shrink and produce thinner, more brittle hair.

Extreme heat with blow drying, curling irons or straighteners can damage the hair because by drying it out. This can make the hair more brittle as well. Deep conditioning treatments once or twice a week can keep hair healthy and hydrated.

If you notice a significant amount of sudden hair loss be sure to see your primary care physician (PCP). Your PCP can prescribe medications that can help balance out your hormones. You may also be taking a medication that can cause hair loss as a side effect so be sure to speak with your physician about this possibility as well. Always talk to your doctor before discontinuing any medications.

Rogaine (minoxidil) is an over-the-counter topical medication that can help prevent and maintain hair loss. This topical medication does need to be used consistently to see results.


Menopause Hair Loss: Causes, Prevention, and Treatment Options

For managing hair loss during menopause, consider consulting a dermatologist to diagnose the underlying cause and explore treatment options such as prescription medications, topical treatments, and supplements. Additionally, maintaining a balanced diet with essential nutrients, staying hydrated, and avoiding heat tools and harmful styling methods can support healthy hair growth during this phase.

Identifying the Causes of Hair Loss During Menopause

Experiencing hair loss during menopause can be distressing for many women. Understanding the biological changes behind this phenomenon is crucial to effectively address and manage it. When estrogen levels drop by 30-60% during menopause, it directly impacts hair growth cycles as estrogen helps to keep hair on the head longer. Reduced levels of progesterone can also contribute to slower hair growth and increased shedding. These drastic hormonal changes are at the root of the problem, influencing the health and vitality of our hair.

Expanding upon this, these shifting hormone levels during menopause can lead to an increase in androgens, male hormones present in women in smaller quantities. Androgens can shrink hair follicles, resulting in decreased hair volume and coverage on the scalp. This combination of hormonal imbalances has a detrimental impact on the overall health of our hair, leading to significant thinning and shedding for many women.

Other Contributing Factors

Hormonal changes are not the sole culprits. Stress, especially at high levels during menopause, can exacerbate hormonal imbalance, adding another layer of complexity to the issue. Not only does stress affect our bodies in various ways, but it could also substantially disrupt our hair growth cycle. Activity in our adrenal glands influences how much cortisol (the primary stress hormone) is produced and released into our bloodstream, wreaking havoc on our hormonal equilibrium.

Furthermore, illness and a lack of certain nutrients can compound the problem. Conditions or nutritional deficiencies that compromise our body’s equilibrium can manifest through changes in our hair health as well. It’s important to keep a check on any underlying health issues that may be contributing to your hair loss during menopause.

Regarding external factors, hair care practices play an integral role too. The excessive use of heat tools like straightening irons and hair dryers can significantly contribute to drying out our strands, leading to breakage and damage. Similarly, chemical-laden hair dyes and perms can compromise our scalp and hair health, exacerbating the effects of menopausal hair loss.

Identifying these multifaceted causes behind menopausal hair loss paves the way for understanding how best to prevent and manage this condition effectively.

Addressing the Role of Nutrition and Lifestyle

Nutrition deeply impacts hair health, especially during menopause. A diet rich in essential nutrients like iron, vitamins, and proteins is crucial for supporting healthy hair growth. Iron helps red blood cells carry oxygen to your cells, including those in your scalp, promoting healthy hair follicles and growth. Leafy green vegetables like spinach, kale, and collard greens are excellent sources of iron. Incorporating protein-rich foods such as eggs and nuts into your diet provides the building blocks necessary for strong, healthy hair.

Moreover, vitamin deficiencies can significantly contribute to hair issues. For instance, vitamin D plays a pivotal role in stimulating hair follicles, making it essential for maintaining healthy hair. Foods rich in vitamin D such as fatty fish (salmon, mackerel) and fortified dairy or plant-based milk products should be included in your diet to support overall hair health during menopause. It’s crucial to avoid crash diets or extreme restrictions that may result in nutrient imbalances.

While nutrition is foundational to healthy hair growth, lifestyle factors also play a significant role in managing menopausal hair loss. Stress management is particularly vital as excessive stress can exacerbate hormonal imbalances, leading to more severe hair loss. Practices such as meditation, yoga, deep breathing exercises, and spending time in nature are effective stress-reducing activities that can help mitigate the impact of hormonal fluctuations on hair health.

Proper nutrition and a balanced lifestyle go a long way in supporting healthy hair growth and mitigating the effects of hormonal changes during menopause.

Furthermore, regular exercise has been shown to promote hormonal balance by reducing stress levels, positively impacting hair health during menopause. Physical activity not only enhances blood circulation throughout the body but also stimulates the delivery of essential nutrients to the scalp—fostering optimal conditions for healthy hair growth.

Imagine a balanced diet and an active lifestyle as key players in maintaining a luscious head of hair even during challenging times like menopause. By proactively attending to your nutrition and incorporating stress-reducing activities into your daily routine—such as yoga and outdoor walks—you’re actively supporting your body’s ability to navigate this transformative stage while maintaining vibrant and healthy hair health.

By emphasizing the significance of nutrition and lifestyle modifications, individuals navigating menopausal hair loss can make informed choices that positively impact their overall well-being.

Importance of Regular Exercise and Mental Wellness

Your body is like a well-oiled machine that requires movement and care to function properly, and your hair is no exception to this rule. Regular exercise plays a crucial role in maintaining overall health—it gets the heart pumping and circulates blood throughout the body, including to the hair follicles. Increased blood flow to the scalp can nurture these follicles and promote healthy hair growth.

Additionally, studies have shown that yoga and meditation can be effective in reducing stress levels, which is especially important during menopause when hormonal fluctuations can contribute to hair loss. It’s not just about moving your body; it’s also about finding moments to relax your mind. When you’re less stressed, your hormones are more likely to stay in balance, which can help keep your hair healthier.

High-intensity interval training (HIIT) has been shown to improve blood circulation, which can directly benefit the health of the hair follicles. By incorporating regular physical activity into your routine, you’re actively supporting your body in combating the effects of hormonal changes during menopause.

Mental Wellness and Its Impact

The National Institute of Mental Health suggests that regular physical activity can help manage symptoms of anxiety and depression—common experiences during menopause. Engaging in exercise releases endorphins, which are natural mood boosters. When you feel better emotionally, it can translate into healthier choices for your body as well as promoting better sleep – which has its own positive effects on bodily health including hair health.

Let’s think about it this way: when you’re taking care of yourself emotionally and physically through exercise, you’re creating an environment where your body can function optimally, leading to potential improvements in hair growth.

In summary, looking after your body often means taking care of your hair too. By incorporating regular exercise into your routine and managing stress through various activities, you’re actively creating an environment conducive to healthier hair growth – a vital component in addressing menopausal hair loss.

Overview of Medical Treatments for Hair Loss

When it comes to addressing menopausal hair loss, several medical treatments are available to combat this challenge. While many people find success with over-the-counter solutions, some may require more intensive interventions to effectively restore hair growth and improve the condition of their scalp.

One of the options available is hair transplantation, a surgical procedure in which hair follicles from one part of the body (referred to as the donor site) are transplanted to a bald or thinning area (the recipient site). This method is particularly effective for those experiencing pattern baldness, where hormone-sensitive follicles at the top and front of the head are likely to be affected. By relocating healthy follicles to areas experiencing thinning, this technique can significantly boost hair density.

Furthermore, low-level laser therapy has gained attention as a non-invasive treatment option for hair restoration. This approach involves using low-energy laser light to stimulate hair follicles on the scalp, promoting hair growth and addressing thinning hair. The gentle nature of this therapy makes it an attractive option for individuals seeking a more conservative approach to combating menopausal hair loss.

Another emerging treatment is platelet-rich plasma (PRP) therapy. For this procedure, a small amount of blood is drawn from the patient and put into a centrifuge to separate the platelets from other components. These concentrated platelets are then injected into the scalp, where they work to stimulate natural hair growth and enhance overall scalp health. With its potential to encourage dormant hair follicles to become active again, PRP therapy has shown promise in assisting individuals experiencing menopausal-related hair loss.

Each of these medical treatments offers unique benefits and considerations when addressing menopausal hair loss. It’s crucial to consult with a healthcare professional to determine which option may be best suited to your individual needs and medical history.

As we’ve explored the landscape of medical treatments for menopausal hair loss, now we turn our attention to analyzing over-the-counter and prescription solutions that can provide relief and restoration for those experiencing this common concern.

Analysis of Over-the-Counter and Prescription Solutions

When it comes to over-the-counter and prescription solutions, particularly for menopausal hair loss, understanding the various options available and their potential effects on the body is essential. In this scenario, topical solutions like minoxidil play a significant role in promoting hair regrowth. Minoxidil is an FDA-approved treatment for female pattern hair loss, and it works by increasing blood flow to the scalp, stimulating hair follicles and promoting hair growth. It’s available over-the-counter in 2% concentration for women, although some dermatologists may prescribe the 5% formulation for specific cases.

It’s important to note that minoxidil has been shown to be more effective for women with diffuse hair loss than men. Clinical trials have demonstrated that approximately 19% of women using the 5% minoxidil solution experienced moderate regrowth after eight months of consistent application. This underscores the potential impact of minoxidil as a viable option for combatting hair loss in menopausal women. In addition to its use as a standalone treatment, minoxidil can also be used in combination with other medications or interventions to achieve enhanced results.

Moving on to finasteride, this oral medication works by inhibiting the enzyme responsible for converting testosterone into dihydrotestosterone (DHT). By reducing DHT levels, finasteride helps combat the hormonal imbalances often associated with hair loss in menopausal women. However, it’s crucial to highlight that while finasteride is FDA-approved for men’s hair loss, its safety and efficacy in women are not as well-established. There is evidence to suggest that finasteride may work for certain women experiencing hair loss due to hormonal imbalances, but caution should be exercised, particularly because it is not safe during pregnancy.

As we consider these over-the-counter and prescription solutions, it’s essential to work closely with a healthcare provider or dermatologist to determine the most suitable course of action based on individual needs and medical history. These professionals can provide personalized insights and recommendations tailored to each person’s unique circumstances.

Understanding the nuances of these over-the-counter and prescription solutions is vital in empowering menopausal women to make informed decisions about managing their hair loss effectively.

Exploring Natural Supplements and Remedies

What to do about hair loss during menopause

When it comes to managing menopausal hair loss, many women seek out natural remedies as an alternative or complementary approach to traditional treatments. The idea of using natural supplements is attractive because they are perceived as gentle and generally have fewer side effects compared to pharmaceutical options. While research on the efficacy of natural supplements for hair loss is ongoing, some have shown promising results and are often used in various forms—such as oral supplements or topical treatments—to promote hair growth and reduce thinning.

One popular natural supplement that receives a lot of attention for its potential hair growth benefits is biotin, also known as vitamin B7 or vitamin H. Biotin plays a crucial role in maintaining the health of your hair, skin, and nails. Studies suggest that biotin deficiency can lead to hair loss, and a sufficient intake of biotin may help promote healthy hair growth. It’s important to consult with a healthcare professional before starting any new supplement, but biotin is often well-tolerated by most individuals.

Another natural supplement that may be beneficial in combating menopausal hair loss is zinc. Zinc is an essential mineral that supports hair follicle health, and a deficiency in zinc has been linked to hair thinning and shedding. Adding zinc-rich foods to your diet or considering a zinc supplement under the guidance of a healthcare provider may contribute to improving your overall hair health.

Moreover, saw palmetto is another popular supplement utilized to address hair loss during menopause. Saw palmetto is believed to inhibit the enzyme 5-alpha-reductase, which plays a role in converting testosterone into dihydrotestosterone (DHT). High levels of DHT have been associated with hair follicle miniaturization and thinning. By limiting DHT production, saw palmetto can potentially mitigate the effects of hormonal imbalances that contribute to hair loss in menopausal women.

Lifestyle Changes

In addition to these supplements, lifestyle changes such as regular exercise, stress management techniques like yoga or meditation, and a balanced diet with adequate protein, vitamins, and minerals can also impact overall hair health.

These natural supplements, when incorporated into a comprehensive approach that includes a healthy lifestyle and good hair care practices, may contribute to better managing menopausal hair loss. Always remember, it’s important to consult with a healthcare professional before starting any new supplement regimen, especially during the menopausal transition when hormone levels are fluctuating.

By integrating natural supplements into your daily routine alongside positive lifestyle changes, you may find relief from menopausal hair loss while adhering to a holistic approach focused on overall wellness.

The Effect of Hormonal Therapies

Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is a renowned method for managing symptoms of menopause, such as hot flashes and vaginal dryness. It involves the use of medications containing female hormones to replace the ones no longer produced by the body. Women going through menopause often experience a decrease in estrogen levels, which can lead to hair thinning and loss. This is where HRT can come into play. By providing the body with the necessary hormones, it can help prevent further hair loss and may even spur regrowth in some cases.

Estrogen plays a vital role in maintaining the health of hair follicles, promoting their growth and strength. When estrogen levels decline during menopause, it can lead to the thinning and weakening of hair. By introducing synthetic estrogen through hormone replacement therapy, it aims to counteract this hormonal imbalance and support the health of hair follicles. It’s essential to note that while HRT may be associated with potential benefits for hair health, it is not typically prescribed solely for addressing hair loss during menopause. Rather, it is primarily utilized to alleviate other symptoms of menopause, and any effects on hair health are considered secondary benefits.

Before considering HRT as a treatment option for menopausal hair loss, it’s crucial to consult a healthcare professional. Hormone replacement therapy carries potential risks and side effects that necessitate careful consideration and evaluation. An individualized approach is essential to assess whether the benefits outweigh the potential drawbacks based on each woman’s overall health status and medical history.

Factors such as age, family medical history, existing health conditions, and personal preferences all play essential roles in determining whether HRT is a suitable choice. Additionally, regular monitoring and follow-ups with a healthcare provider are crucial when undergoing hormone replacement therapy to ensure its effectiveness and identify any emerging concerns promptly.


Given the multifaceted nature of hormone replacement therapy alongside its associated risks and considerations, seeking professional guidance ensures that a comprehensive evaluation is conducted to determine the most appropriate course of action tailored to individual needs.

For a complimentary hair restoration consultation in Draper or Layton, please (801) 776-2220 or contact us HERE.

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If you are someone who is experiencing hair thinning or loss beyond lifestyle behaviors, UFP Hair Restoration offers non-surgical and surgical options for hair restoration.
Contact us to schedule a hair restoration consultation or call 801-776-2220.

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