Study Reveals A Surprising Link Between Menopause And Hair Loss

Menopause refers to the time in a woman's life when her ovaries stop producing reproductive hormones. It is typically identified 12 months after a woman's last period (via Mayo Clinic). Physical symptoms of menopause include hot flashes, night sweats, and mood changes. Symptoms can also include hair loss, according to a new study published in Menopause. In the study, Thai researchers found that over half of postmenopausal women experienced some form of hair loss or hair thinning.

Hair loss has been associated with menopause for a long time, but scientists are still unsure exactly why it occurs. Researchers in the study believed it may be tied to estrogen levels. "Estrogen receptors are present in the hair follicles, which hints at its association with the withdrawal of estrogen at menopause that may affect hair growth," the researchers wrote (via NBC News). Other hormonal changes may also affect hair loss as women get older. There are many causes of hair loss, which fortunately means there are many potential treatments. Speak to your doctor if you are concerned about hair thinning or hair loss.

Potential causes of hair loss

There are many reasons that you may notice your hair thinning, whether you are going through menopause or not. Genetics often plays a large role in how your hair looks. "There are multiple different genes related to hair loss, and this is a very complex interplay of many genes. You shouldn't assume you've done anything to cause your hair loss, especially if you are otherwise healthy," said Alison Bruce, MBChB, a dermatologist at Mayo Clinic via Everyday Health. Physical and emotional stress can cause hair loss by pushing too many hair follicles at once into a resting place, causing them to fall out more quickly than usual.

Treatments for hair loss include over-the-counter medications, prescription medications, and nutritional supplements. Finding the cause of your hair loss will help you find the most effective treatment, so you should speak to your doctor with any concerns about your thinning hair.