Can Women Be Affected by DHT-Related Hair Loss?
Since a lot of people suffer from hair loss, both men and women, numerous studies are trying to identify the cause, in order to discover efficient treatments. So far, the results of these studies have pointed out to DHT, the short name for dihydrotestosterone, a derivative of the male hormone known as testosterone. Considered to be one of the main culprits for pattern baldness in men, it seems to be related to female pattern baldness, too. Let’s see why this happens.
The connection between DHT and hair loss
Before discussing about why this derivative of testosterone affects women, too, a few words are needed to understand exactly how hair loss happens when it is related to the production of this particular substance produced by the human body.
DHT is present in many areas of the body, including hair. Here, it does a pretty unpleasant thing, as it causes hair to become weak, thin, and eventually, fall. Treatments to reduce DHT from the inside are not indicated, for the simple reason, that it can disturb the internal hormonal balance and cause even more unpleasant side effects. This is why topical treatments are much more advised.
Women and DHT
Even if women have a much lower amount of testosterone in their bodies, they do have some. Normally, this should not be a problem, but, just as testosterone declines in men after the age of 25, women experience a decline in their female hormones over the years. Under the circumstances, the levels of testosterone can grow at the same time. Even if a blood test would tell you that the amount of testosterone you have is still within normal limits, you may start experiencing hair loss due to DHT.
The male hormone follows the same pattern in women as it does in men. It still creates DHT when in contact with the enzyme called Type II 5-alpha reductase. And, in the end, there will be traces of DHT on your hair follicles, as you advance in age.
As female hormones lower their impact, DHT gets an edge that it has never had before. That is why the symptoms experienced seem to happen somewhat out of the blue.
The hair follicles and what happens to them
DHT does not affect the visible part of your hair, but its follicles. It creates a reaction that makes the follicles weaker and they stop holding on to your hair as they used to. Although this can be very troublesome and it may lead to hair loss, this does not mean that there is nothing you can do about it.
Treatments applied directly to your scalp and your hair can help with reducing the amount of DHT present here. Intervening on the hormonal balance inside your body with medication is not a good idea, although drugs prescribed for menopause effects will reduce the aforementioned edge of DHT on your body. Stick to hair care products that can make your follicles grow more vigorous and never follow a medical treatment not prescribed by your doctor.