Inherited hair loss affects more than 80 million Americans, and they’re not all men. Half of all men and women have noticeable balding or thinning by the time they celebrate their 50th birthday.
Though some may shrug it off as a natural part of aging, most have a strong emotional response to their hair loss, and for a good reason. Hair is called your crowning glory because it symbolizes your personality. Losing that symbol takes a real toll on your emotions and self-esteem.
At Allure Dermatology, Theresa Durchhalter, DO, FAAD, meets many patients struggling with the emotional fallout of hair loss. Still, their spirits pick up when they learn that treatments to restore hair growth are available.
Here, we explore the emotional side of hair loss and offer information about your treatment options.
Hair reflects your self-identity
Your choice of hairstyle and color expresses your personality and reflects your sense of self and how you want people to perceive you. Qualities like confidence, body image, social activism, passions, and gender identity are conveyed through your hairstyle.
A good hair day lifts your spirit — you feel good and ready to take on the day. On the other hand, a bad hair day can bring you down. This almost magical influence hair has on your emotions is only bolstered when someone comments on how your hair looks.
Though some people can be (understandably) vain about their thick, beautiful hair, its link to your self-identity has nothing to do with vanity.
Whether good or bad, hair is inescapably connected with how you view yourself. Losing your hair causes a significant shift that can shake you to your core.
Hair loss affects your emotional well-being
Considering hair’s connection to your self-esteem, it’s no surprise that losing hair can trigger many emotions and affect daily life. Think of it this way: Hair loss is, in fact, a major loss.
Everything your hair reflects about your self-identity changes. As a result, you may feel sad, angry, ashamed, or embarrassed — feelings that can easily lead to depression. Some people develop such intense anxiety (often due to the fear of being judged) they stop socializing.
How to overcome the emotional side of hair loss
There are two steps you can take to deal with the trauma of hair loss:
Talk with a counselor
We understand that talking with a counselor may seem a bit extreme for a problem like hair loss. But if your feelings become overwhelming, affect your daily life, or don’t show signs of improving in a few weeks, a therapist can help.
Any life issue that affects your emotions and self-identity can benefit from talking with a professional counselor. They’re trained to help you navigate the change, deal with anxiety and other feelings, and overcome self-esteem and body-image issues.
Seek treatment to restore your hair
You can restore hair growth and thickness and stop hair loss without hair transplant procedures. We begin by identifying and treating reversible causes of hair loss. For example, ongoing stress, hormone imbalances, nutritional deficiencies, and wearing tight hairstyles cause hair loss, but hair growth can rebound after treating the underlying problem.
Then we provide treatments like platelet-rich plasma (PRP) that stimulate the follicles to grow new, thicker hair. Studies show that PRP is effective even if your hair loss is caused by androgenetic alopecia.
Androgenetic alopecia is an inherited condition affecting men and women. This condition is commonly called pattern baldness because it causes the classic pattern of balding in men and overall hair thinning in women.
Whether you notice a receding hairline, thinning hair, or suddenly lose large patches of hair, we can help. Call Allure Dermatology or use the online booking feature today to start your journey toward hair restoration.