Psychological Effects of Hair Loss in Men and Women

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For some people, looking in the mirror can be a painful, even traumatizing experience.  Realizing you have thinning hair or that you’re losing hair can cause a variety of reactions, from minor sadness to full-scale depression. Hair loss can be particularly difficult for women.  RHRLI wants you to know about the psychological effects of hair loss. We want you to understand the facts and to know that help is available. If you’re seeking a permanent solution to hair loss, RHRLI offers one. We are the only hair restoration center on Long Island, that features the ARTAS® System, the safest, most advanced treatment available today.

Attitudes About Hair Loss

A 2005 study about the impact of hair loss asked more than 1,500 men in five European countries if they were experiencing hair loss. Forty-seven percent of the men said they were and these 729 men were asked a series of questions about their attitudes towards hair loss.

Of these 729 men, 62 percent said that hair loss could affect self-esteem.  Forty-three percent of the men said they were concerned about losing an important part of personal attractiveness, while 42 percent admitted that they feared losing their hair.  Among the other concerns that the men associated with hair loss was, getting older, which occurred for 37 percent of the men, while 22 percent worried about the negative effects it would have on their social life. Twenty-one percent said that they had feelings of depression as a result of hair loss 38 percent of the men who were not in stable romantic relationships said that they had reduced self-confidence in their personal appearance.

Less than 10 percent of the men were pursuing treatment for hair loss and 75 percent of the men had never pursued treatment, indicating the need for more men to seek hair loss treatment, according to the researchers.

Research on More Serious Effects of Thinning Hair

More recently, Huffington Post reported in 2013, that hair loss can lead to even more serious reactions. According to Huffington, researchers from Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin found that hair loss can trigger a psychological breakdown. The effect can be so severe that it can lead to feelings of ugliness and trigger body dysmorphic disorder, a condition which causes people to experience acute anxiety about their looks.

The researchers also report low self-confidence, mental disorders and impaired quality of life. They found that the discovery of thinning hair could trigger trichotillomania, a condition in which patients exacerbate hair loss by twisting or pulling their hair.

Hair Loss and Women

Hair loss can have a devastating effect on women. According to WebMD, 40 percent of women have visible hair loss by the time they reach age 40, adding that it can be, “absolutely devastating for self-image and emotional well-being.”

A 1991 study of women with androgenetic alopecia, the most common form of hair loss, compared them with a group of women with non-apparent dermatological diseases, and with a group of men with androgenetic alopecia. The women with androgenetic alopecia had a higher rate of reporting social inadequacy compared to the other women and showed more feelings of inadequacy and lower self-esteem than the men. The researchers concluded that androgenetic alopecia is substantially more distressing for women.

RHRLI Can Help You with a Permanent Solution

Not everyone has a severe reaction to learning that they’re losing their hair. If you’re having strong negative feelings about thinning hair, you should certainly contact a qualified therapist or mental health professional. If you’re looking for a solution to your hair loss, RHRLI offers the ARTAS® System. It will leave you with a full and healthy head of hair and can help you avoid painful surgery or less accurate procedures that involve hand-held devices. To get started, contact us today.

Please note that the author of this piece is not a doctor and the information in this material is not intended as medical advice. Please consult your doctor or medical professional for specific information regarding your individual situation.

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