thinning hair

Letter To My Hair Loss

by admin on November 19, 2008

Dear Hair,

I am so mad at you, and hurt by you for what you have done to me. I sit here in my pajamas and robe, crying uncontrollably from your selfish desire to leave. Have you no consideration for me? For my life , for my sanity? For 21 years you deceived me, tricked me into a false sense of security thinking you would be with me for life. What did I ever do to you? Was it lack of appreciation?

Now for 9 years you let me try to do different things to win you back. I gave you all sorts of things…. I even prayed for you and meditated for you! And what do you do? You tease me. You stay for awhile then run away. Stay, then run away. Now you’ve almost taken all of your things and left. What am I left with? An emptiness and wonder for what I will do without you.

How did I ever depend on you so much? You logically seem so insignificant, yes I SAID it, insignificant! What do you do? You just sit there, waiting to be tended to and pampered. I have other things more precious than you. Health, Sight, Hearing, Legs, Arms, and Heart.  I know you’ve made up your mind already, and that there is nothing left I can give you to stay. So I guess I should work on moving on as well. But… if you want to stay, I’ll gladly take you back! So let me know at the next shampoo, k?  :)

Yours Truly,

Mind, Body, & Soul

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Hi, I’m a 19 year old girl who has suffered major hair thinning. I’ve just discovered about this community/project a few days ago. Uptil now, this seems to be probably the most resourceful place I’ve seen.

I’ve been pretty desperate for answers.

As a child, my hair was extremely thick. However, as I grew up, my hair become progressively thinner. Two years go, I went on an unhealthy diet and I started to really notice that my hair was extremely thin (also, my hair was falling out like crazy). I thought that it was due to the fact that I didn’t get enough vitamins, so I started to eat healthily again. Unfortunately or maybe fortunately, my hair only stopped shedding like crazy, but no new hair grew back to replace those I lost.

It has been 2 years, and my hair is still quite thin. Most people can’t see it, but I definitely can – especially when my hair is greasy or when I tie it in a ponytail (you can see my scalp very clearly).

I’ve read as much as I could on women hair loss, and nothing seems to really fit my symptoms. I took a blood test and it showed that my levels were perfectly fine.

After reading as much as I could, there were really only 2 diseases that sort of fit my simptoms.

1. Hypothyroidism – my mother has that
2. Androgenetic alopecia – my hair is thin all over my head and my hairline is not receeding.

However, the only thing that doesn’t seem to quite “fit” is the falling of my hair. My hair does not seem thinner than it was 2 years ago. I do not lose an excessive amount of hair (contrary to the many testimonies I’ve read). When I comb my hair after a shower, I would loose maybe 5-10 strands. In some ways, my hair loss seems proportionnal to the amount of hair I have.

I often get depressed because of the state of my hair – especially when I see my friends with thick hair and get to choose different styles of haircuts while I’m stuck to one. I can’t confirm with 100% certainty that my situation hasn’t worsen. From what I can see, it seems to have stabilized. But sometimes, when I look at old pictures, I start believing that it did in fact get worse. Afterwards, I panick and can’t sleep at night.

Questions:
Does androgenetic alopecia have different “levels” of hair loss? I haven’t taken any medication to help, but I know for sure that I do not lose a crazy amount of hair. However, I am also certain that this is certainly not normal for a teenage girl to have so little hair (I now have less than 50% of the hair I used to have as a child, and from the top of my head, my scalp is pretty visible). From what I can see, I do, in fact, have new hair that grow, but not many.

I am so desperate for answers. Although you may not have any precise answers for me, I’d greatly appreciate your point of view on my situation.

Thank you,
Linda

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Dear Linda,

Thanks for writing me and I’m sorry to hear that you are struggling with this. First things first, stop.. take a deep breath, let it all out and take a moment to reflect on how lucky you are that your hair loss has stabilized for the past two years. Losing 5 -10 hairs after a shower is remarkable, you’ll be the envy of all my readers :)

Having said that, I do understand your concerns and pain in having to deal with less hair than you had before. I must state upfront that I am not a physician and cannot provide medical information or diagnosis, anything I write is really just my opinion and knowledge gained from living with hair loss myself for the past 9 years (yikes that sounds like a lot). With that disclaimer out of the way I can continue on. [click to continue…]

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You know what, my dog doesn’t care if I have hair so crazy thick like the Pantene girl or two like Homer Simpson. He’d love me fat, he’d love me bald, he’d love me in ugly clothes. He’d love me because he loves me and he doesn’t judge those things. Why do I judge myself so harshly? Why does society judge so harshly? Everyone always says it, but often it is difficult to make yourself believe, beauty comes from within. That is the truth. We are all going to get old, and looks fade, but who we are inside, how we treat other people, how we impact their lives… that will last through our lifetime and beyond.

But it is difficult to translate that idea to the brain when you stand in front of a mirror and hardly recognize the person staring back. It will sound funny, but when I attempt to clip my hair with a butterfly clip (hard to do with not a lot of hair) I resemble an ICE CREAM CONE! Hard to explain but let me tell you, it isn’t a good look! :)

Admittedly, I watch American Idol more for checking out Paula’s latest hair than for the actual singing competition. She is a hair wearer, love her for that, and she looks so darn good. It is a testament to how good hair can look. It changes pretty much weekly and it gives me hope.

The other problem I find myself confronted with is finding a really good local salon that can provide quality hair without having to mortgage my house to afford it, although I’d sell my car an anything else I had to just to be able to get what I needed to feel comfortable in my own skin. Where do Tyra, Beyonce, and every other celebrity who wears hair, get theirs? I haven’t really pounded the pavement searching for a hair replacement service provider so perhaps I haven’t searched hard enough. Online providers are plenty, but I’d prefer meeting with a compassionate hair replacement provider in person when the time comes. If you haven’t already, you should read my Ebay wig purchasing experience.

Well there are my hairy thoughts. I wish everyone a great Friday night! Go out, stay in, do what you do and feel good about being you. You are beautiful. Judge Judy says “Beauty Fades Dumb Is Forever,” so I’m working on making myself smarter than the women with the shampoo commercial hair, in the end I’ll be the leader!!! Whoo Hooo! Gotta laugh right?

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After 2 Years of Hair Loss, I Gratefully Found You - Rachel's Hair Loss StoryHi there. I can’t begin to tell you how grateful I am to find this site. After 2 years of suffering in silence, I found reference to you on web-med. My lucky day! I cried at the compassion and sympathy that I found on the very first page. Thank-you!

My hair loss started after I had some children sleep over that had lice. I didn’t suspect lice until my head had itched for 2-3 months. I thought that I was having a re-action to shampoo or conditioner. Then, I put a fine tooth comb through my hair and big ole honkers fell out. Disgusting! I did not use toxic chemicals to get rid of them or I would have suspected that. I used tea tree oil, lavender oil, etc and left them on my head under a shower cap for a week and I combed out the eggs with a nit comb. At about this time (coincidence?) I started to lose my hair. I went and got a perm to feel better and even more fell out and broke off. I thought that my loss was lice and perm related, but it just kept falling out. I went to a MD and she took ferriten and thyroid test. Ferriten was low and she was convinced that was the cause. I begged her to take aggressive action to get to the bottom of this, but she said no, that any other Doc would think ferriten.

Well, 6 months later ferritin is normal and I am still losing hair. I have lost at least 1/2 of my previously very thick and beautiful hair. My scalp is very visable and I even bought a hair peice. I wear it in a pony at the top of my head, but suspect that won’t go on for long as it is becoming very obvious.

I finally got the MD to give me a blood test(which I have to pay for because my insurence will not pay for alopecia!). The results of the 4 hormones were pretty normal. Prolactin. testestarone, FSH and DHEA. These were the ones that she wrote for me. I wanted others, but she said no. I needed to find another avenue, so I am now going to do an indepth siliva test which will show a comprehensive view of my post menopausal hormone profile, and not through this Doc. I now know that I need to go elsewhere. Next I will probably go to a dermatoligist to get a scalp biopsy and whatever. [click to continue…]

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Letting My Hair Down... How bout a little inspirationSo this weekend I decided to let my hair down… literally. I usually just pull it back, but Sunday I had to go to an event that required that I look more proper, a little more put together. Also for the outfit I was wearing I thought it would look so much nicer with my hair down. So for the first time in a long time I did the “hair routine.” I have avoided doing it for quite sometime because it seemed pointless. My hair is so thin and lifeless that the less time I spend working on it the better. If you haven’t already read it in one of my past postings, the hair routine usually takes about 1 – 1 1/2 hours and involves the use of a thickening shampoo and conditioner, then the use of a defrizzer that is applied after I’ve combed through my wet hair, then a thickening agent, and then I use a giant roll brush and blowdryer to make my hair look fuller. The final thing is the use of a flat iron to smooth it out.

Part of why I hate wearing it down is because it feels like nothing is there, I can’t feel the weight of my hair anymore, I haven’t for quite sometime, but it’s even worse now. I sucked it up anyways. You know what, most of those people I saw on Sunday didn’t have any idea I was losing my hair… I was able to perform hair magic one more time. I didn’t see any wandering eyes drifting upwards to stare at my thinning hair. I do look like a person with thin hair, but to them they probably thought it was just naturally thin. Even with that I still consider shaving my head because it is complete torture to lose 500+ hairs on some days. That is the type of extreme shedding that has started the last couple years, mainly the last year. I do think it is getting a little better now for whatever reason. Hair is cyclical and maybe I’m finally on the upswing. *fingers crossed*

But there is more…So after I finally made it through Sunday with the hair down, I kept it down, after all that effort I wanted to squeeze out another day of trying to feel normal. My fiance made a comment that I seemed so much more confident and social with my hair down, that I was like a different person. That makes sense, I hate wearing my hair up all the time, and I’m always feeling self conscious so I never have a chance to really be me. Monday night we out to a nice dinner and then went to a blues club to listen to music and have drinks. For a split second I sort of forgot about everything and enjoyed myself. I haven’t done that in a really really long time. It felt wonderful. Those moments are few and far between and I really appreciated it. In fact I told my fiance I wanted to start doing that at least once a week, get dressed up have a nice dinner, listen to some music… be normal. Even if I have to go with my hair pulled back in a not so attractive manner, I want to live life. [click to continue…]

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My Sister Is Losing Her Hair And I Want To Help HerHi all. I don’t know if i’m stepping over the boundaries here and if I am, please let me know. I mean no disrespect. I am a family member of someone who has recently experienced hair loss. she’s my big sister and we live together. this has been an absolutely devastating experience for her. She started to really notice thining about a month or so ago and she has been to a couple of doctors, but hasn’t had too many tests done yet. I’ve been trying to find doctors and information for her, but i don’t know if i’m just making it harder. she is having a hard time so i try to take over the logistical stuff so she doesn’t have to think about it.

I guess i’m posting this just to ask you if there is anything i can do to help her or make this less painful. I know i can’t know what she’s feeling, but thought I would reach out to see if any of you could tell me stories of someone helping you make the situation better. She is a very guarded person and she doesn’t let people in very easily. I know she must feel completely isolated and I just want her to know she isn’t. We have a very close family and everyone is here for her when she needs it.

Again, I apologize if I am making anyone feel violated. I just want to help my sister any way I can. Thanks for listening.

~Brooke

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Dear Brooke –

Thank you so much for writing. I think it is really wonderful that you are trying to take on an active role in helping your sister through this extremely difficult time. Hair loss is devastating for any woman, and your sister is not alone in this. I’m certain your support means more to her than you even realize, and I certainly don’t think you are making anything worse by being there for her. Just a couple questions, how old is your sister? Did she recently start or stop taking birth control pills, nuva ring or the patch or experienced any recent extreme weight loss?

You asked for stories of situations where someone was able to make the situation better for the woman experiencing hair loss. For myself, the biggest help was just having someone there to listen to me. My fiance was there from the beginning and he always listened and understood my emotional pain, sense of confusion and fear for the unknown future. He understood my real loss. Having my feelings validated was extremely important to me, it still is. Having someone who believed my words “I am losing my hair” and fully comprehending the impact that was having on me, was helpful to me. What do I mean by believing? By believing I mean not denying or trivializing my pain by telling me “oh you look fine, you’re not losing your hair.” If a woman is losing her hair, she knows it, end of story. On the flip side, words that helped me was when he told me ” I know you are losing your hair, but to the rest of the world you look like you have a full head of hair, so try and enjoy today.” It was very delicate wording. He validated my situation and then gave the best hair complement a women with hair loss could get :) He wasn’t lying either, it was the truth. When we are engulfed in the early stages of hair loss we struggle with what our former image was…. a full head of hair. As it thins, nothing is good enough and the depression and sadness creeps to an all time high even when no one else can really tell. Now people can tell I’m losing me hair, but I’d say definitely for the first 5 years, my secret was known to only me. That didn’t prevent me from feeling ugly, sad and avoiding social gatherings, but it was something I wish I fully realized back then. Having my fiance tell me it “looked like I had a full head of hair” reminded me what I couldn’t remind myself, I was still OK. [click to continue…]

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