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Chicago Hair Institute

Causes of Hair Loss in Female Teenagers

By Dr. Raymond Konior on August 15, 2018

Female drying wet hair with a towelThe way a teenage girl’s hair looks is important to her self-esteem and confidence. This is a critical time in a young girl’s life. Hair loss at this age can be emotionally distressing and should be taken seriously.

While uncommon at this age, hair loss can happen, and understanding the causes of hair loss in female teenagers is helpful in determining the best form of treatment. At Chicago Hair Institute in Chicago, IL, we provide a variety of hair loss treatments to stop hair loss or restore hair for female teenagers.

Normal Hair Loss

It is normal to lose between 50 to 100 strands of hair per day. Hair goes through ongoing growth and rest cycles in which new hairs grow back in the same follicle.

In cases of serious hair loss, patients may notice thinning or balding patches or clumps of hair falling out.

Typically, hair loss during the teen years is temporary and the hair will grow back once the underlying cause is corrected.

Vitamin Deficiency

Our hair needs vitamins and nutrients on a daily basis. These nutrients feed the body’s cells and help the hair grow. Common deficiencies that contribute to hair loss include vitamin B1, B2, C, and iron.

Crash diets or eating disorders like anorexia and bulimia can cause significant hair loss. Poor nutrition deprives the body of the protein, vitamins, and minerals it needs to support and encourage hair growth.

Hormonal Changes  

Hormonal fluctuations occur during puberty. Some of these hormones regulate the follicle’s production of hair; as the hormones fluctuate, they may affect hair growth.

The hormone responsible for hair loss is dihydrotestosterone, or DHT. Any hormonal imbalance can cause hair loss. Hair will begin to grow again once the hormones balance out.

Illness

Sometimes excessive hair loss can be a sign of a broader medical issue. When a patient experiences some type of severe or chronic illness during her teens, she is at a much higher risk of developing hair loss.

Diabetes, thyroid disease, lupus, and polycystic ovary syndrome can affect the natural hair production cycle. Surgery, a high fever, and surviving a traumatic event can also temporarily cause a significant amount of hair loss.

Androgenetic Alopecia

This can be a temporary or chronic condition in which hair falls out in patches anywhere on the body. It is caused by a combination of genes and hormones called androgens. Signs of alopecia are often a rounded circle of hair loss and can start as a small patch and over time, increase in size.  

Prescription Medications

Prescribed medications to treat acne, pimples, thyroid disorders, bipolar disorder, and ADHD have been found to be a common reason for hair loss. Birth control pills may also be associated with hair loss.

Chemotherapy drugs to treat cancer are usually the most widely known medicines that cause hair loss. Ask your doctor to switch your medications if you feel the prescriptions could be related to the loss of your hair.

Hair Pulling

This is called trichotillomania and is an unconscious psychological disorder, in which patients repeatedly pull their hair out, leaving bald patches behind. Those with this condition should seek help from a health professional to stop the hair loss.  

Hairstyling

Many teenage girls try to keep up with current trends and styles. Hair loss can easily happen due to excessive hairstyling using heat or damaging styling products and chemicals. This can include hair color, straightening processes, perms, and the use of bleach.

Even certain hairstyles like braids, which pull on the hair for a long period of time, can contribute to hair loss. This is called traction alopecia, and it can permanently damage the hair follicles.

Treating and Preventing Hair Loss in Teenage Girls

There are several ways that teenage girls can prevent and treat hair loss. For example:

  • Eat a nutritious diet full of protein and vitamin-rich foods.
  • Avoid crash diets and drink a lot of water each day.
  • Air dry your hair instead of using a blow dryer.
  • Limit harsh products, heat styling, and tight hairstyles.
  • Make sure you do not have any vitamin deficiencies or abnormal hormonal imbalances.
  • Use gentle care when brushing or shampooing your hair.
  • Reduce stress when possible.
  • Avoid styling wet hair.
  • Have frequent scalp massages.

Contact Us

Hair loss in teenage girls can have a significant impact on their self-esteem and overall wellbeing. Contact us online or by calling 630-932-9690 at the first signs of hair loss, thinning, or balding. Our doctors will perform a comprehensive consultation to determine an effective treatment plan.

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