A constant hair loss of more than 100 strands a day (losing up to 100 strands a day is considered normal) definitely warrants further investigation with a doctor.
As Dr Israr explained, Female Pattern Hair Loss (FPHL) certainly would be my top suspicion as I see it most commonly amongst female patients of your age group.
To add on to the very useful image for reference he has included above, a few additional details about FPHL:
- Hair thinning is different from that of male pattern baldness.
- In FPHL: Hair thins mainly on the top of your head and crown of your scalp.
- It usually starts with a widening through the center hair part.
- Your front hairline remains (unlike a receding hairline in males).
- The hair loss rarely progresses to total or near total baldness, as it may in men.
I’d suggest that you see a dermatologist as a first step to find out the cause of your hair loss. Subsequently for treatment, you can choose to see either a dermatologist or an aesthetic doctor with a special interest in hair.
What should you expect when you see the doctor?
Your doctor will take a thorough history and exam. FPHL is usually diagnosed based on:
- Ruling out other causes of hair loss
- The appearance and pattern of your hair loss
- Your medical history
The doctor will examine you for other signs of too much male hormone (androgen), such as:
- Abnormal new hair growth, such as on the face or between the belly button and pubic area.
- Changes in menstrual periods
- New acne
In rare instances, if your hair loss pattern is not typical of FPHL, he may also suggest a few bloods tests or a skin biopsy to diagnose other types of skin disorders that cause hair loss.
The hair loss in FPHL is permanent, if not treated.
The 3 main types of treatment for FPHL:
1. Minoxidil, a topical foam applied to your scalp.
- Minoxidil may help hair grow in about 1 in 4 women.
- In most women, it’s effective at slowing or stopping hair loss.
- You must continue to use this medicine for a long time.
- Hair loss starts again when you stop using it.
If minoxidil doesn’t work, your doctor may recommend an oral medicine called spironolactone: Spironolactone may help if your hair loss is caused by too much androgen, a male hormone.
3. Hair transplant
- Hair transplant removes tiny plugs of hair from areas where your hair is thicker to replace hair in areas where you are balding.
- This can cause minor scarring where the hair is removed, and carries a slight risk for skin infection.
- Hair transplant is expensive. In Singapore, hair transplant costs anything from $8 to $15 per single strand of hair transplanted. However, the results are permanent.