Advice on How Women can Slow the Shedding By Bernard Arocha, MD on March 17, 2015

USA Today recently published an excellent article, "Five ways to put a crimp in hair loss," and we thought the hair restoration community might be interested in the advice offered. The article was written by Kim Painter, who can be found on Twitter at!/KimPainter.

She writes that women are less likely than men to go bald. But, as women age, their hair does thin. Some women lose more than others, which can at least partly be blamed on genetics. But it is clear that women can slow the shedding. According to studies examining twins, environmental factors play a bigger role in female hair loss than is the case for hair loss among men. Studies of twins can be especially useful when comparing environmental versus genetic causes of hair loss.

Here are the five recommendations Painter gathered in discussions with Bahman Guyuron , chairman of the plastic surgery department at University Hospitals Case Medical Center, Cleveland for women trying to hold on to their hair:

1. Don’t smoke. Smoking was a “very significant” risk factor for hair loss in a study Guyuron led among 90 pairs of female identical twins. Those who smoked for the most years had the most hair loss around their temples. Smoking impairs blood circulation, which is vital in hair growth, and makes the scalp oilier, which can encourage bacterial overgrowth and damage harm follicles.

2. Wear a hat. Don’t worry so much about messing up your hair style and developing a temporary case of “hat head.” You may be rewarded with thicker, healthier hair in the long run if you make a habit of protecting your head from the sun.

3. Watch what you drink. In the study of twin sisters, those who drank one to two cups of coffee a day and those who had up to four alcoholic beverages a week fared best. The reasons are not clear, but a bit of alcohol may help by increasing blood circulation to the scalp. It is important to keep in mind that more alcohol won't deliver more benefit. Moderation is key.

4. Manage stress. Hair loss is greater among women who were divorced, widowed or married multiple times. The common factor is probably stress. Stress raises levels of the hormone cortisol, which might trigger chemical changes that damage hair follicles.

5. Hair stylists can help. While the study could not determine whether chemical hair-straighteners played roles in hair loss, braids and weaves were linked with hair loss by researchers at Cleveland Clinic. They focused on a pattern of hair loss on the crown of the head that is common in African-American women. Very tight styles held in place for weeks or months may cause damage. Women should tell their stylists not to make the braiding so tight.

All of this is very good advice. Of course, this should not be confused with Female Pattern Hair Loss, which affects an estimated 30 million women in the U.S., according to the American Academy of Dermatology.

Female Pattern Hair Loss is a broad term, which encompasses many possible causes. FBHL usually occurs post-pubescent or after hormonal changes such as post-menopause or after discontinuing birth control pills. This pattern hair loss usually spares the hairline and manifests with thinning in the frontal, and mid-scalp areas Ludwig I and II. Ludwig III is the most severe pattern in which the thinning on the top is most severe and it also thins in the back or occipital area. Fortunately, the Ludwig III is rare occurring in only 1 in 7 patients.


Unlike traditional methods of hair restoration, such as extensions, weaves and wigs, the Arocha Hair Restoration method uses your own natural hair for an undetectable and lasting solution for natural hair restoration.


Contact Dr. Arocha for your consultation in Houston or Dallas for Hair Replacement options.

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Arocha Hair Restoration

Since 2002, Bernardino A. Arocha, M.D. has been transforming lives through the power of hair restoration. With an artistic approach and a variety of procedures available, Arocha Hair Restoration has a track record of providing stunning results. Dr. Arocha is affiliated with prominent organizations with memberships that include:

  • Diplomate, American Board of Hair Restoration Surgery (ABHRS)
  • Fellow, International Society of Hair Restoration Surgery (ISHRS)
  • American Society of Hair Restoration Surgery (ASHRS)
  • American Academy of Cosmetic Surgery (AACS)

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