A proven treatment for female-pattern baldness is a hair lotion containing minoxidil. After using it, most women see improvements, including a stop to or slowing of the balding, as well as thicker hair. Up to 25% of women experience hair regrowth while using it.
It’s also important to address the psychological impact of hair loss. If you’ve lost your hair, even temporarily, life will be easier if you can accept what’s happened and learn to live with your altered appearance.
Share stories: It helps to know you’re not alone. Watch this video of a woman’s personal experience of alopecia, read this real-life story of Michelle Chapman who was diagnosed with alopecia when she was five, then read the comments at the end of this article to see how others cope.
Join a support group: There are a variety of groups around the country where you can meet and socialise with other people with alopecia. Find your nearest Alopecia UK support group.
Go online: If you prefer to go online to talk to others, join Alopecia UK’s discussion forum.
Accept it: It’s not easy, but try to come to terms with your hair loss. One way to do this is to make a list of all your good qualities and focus your energy on celebrating these attributes.
Talk about it: Discuss your hair loss with your friends, family and loved ones, preferably early on. Let them know how you feel about it and what kind of support you need. If hair loss is affecting your relationship with your partner, going to therapy or couples counselling may help.
Cover up: Look into disguising and covering up your hair loss with things like wigs, hair extensions, scarves and make-up. Persevere until you find a product and style that suits you. “Equally, you may prefer not to cover up at all. Whatever works best for you,” says Jackie.
Be patient: many cases of hair loss in women are temporary. That said, regrowth is unpredictable and can take years. Remember too, that your new hair can be any texture and colour.
Avoid miracle cures: don’t be taken in by claims for wonder products. There are no cures for female hair loss.