By the age of 50, nearly half of women encounter hair thinning, affecting scalp and hair density and leading to shedding. Luscious, silky locks are often seen as a symbol of femininity and health, deeply intertwined with our self-image and societal perceptions of beauty. For many women in Singapore and globally, hair is not just a matter of appearance but a key part of their identity, influencing how they feel seen and understood by the world. This article aims to provide insight into female hair loss, as well as the methods to tackle it effectively.

The Natural Hair Growth Cycle

To understand and manage female hair loss, it’s crucial to learn about the hair growth cycle, which comprises four distinct stages: Anagen, Catagen, Telogen and Early Anagen. Each stage plays an important role in hair health and growth.

Human head hair growth cycle. Biological catagen, telogen phases. Hair infographics.

Anagen (Growth Phase)

Your hair undergoes an active growth period during the Anagen phase, which can last between two to six years. During this time, your hair cells multiply rapidly, leading to the continual lengthening of your hair.

  • Duration: 2-6 years
  • Key Features: Rapid cell multiplication, hair lengthening

Catagen (Transitional Phase)

The Catagen phase is a transitional period normal hair cycle that lasts approximately two to three weeks. In this stage, your hair growth slows significantly, and the hair follicle starts to shrink.

  • Duration: 2-3 weeks
  • Key Features: Hair growth slows, hair follicle shrinkage

Telogen (Resting Phase)

The Telogen phase is when your hair enters a resting state. Typically lasting about three months, this phase culminates in the natural shedding of hair strands. It’s normal for you to only lose between 50 to 100 hairs a day during this phase.

  • Duration: 3 months
  • Key Features: Hair rest, natural shedding, new hair growth initiation

Early Anagen (Initial Growth Phase)

Early Anagen marks the final stage of the hair growth cycle. Hair strands start to form from the dormant follicles and push through the scalp.

  • Duration: Variable, generally lasts a few days to several weeks
  • Key Features: Follicle activation, initial hair strand formation, emergence of new hair through the scalp

Female Hair Loss Treatment Options at DrScalp

Experiencing hair loss can be distressing. In Singapore, various treatments available cater specifically to women’s needs. Should you wish to explore these options further, get in touch with a professional to discuss your individual situation.

Signature Hair Loss Treatment

DrScalp’s signature treatment addresses women’s hair loss with a blend of advanced technology and natural products. Personalised care plans are crafted following an AI-powered scalp analysis, promoting hair regrowth and scalp health.

Postpartum Hair Loss Treatment

Tailored for new mothers, this treatment combats postpartum hair loss. DrScalp’s approach nurtures hair back to health, enhancing hair volume and considering hormonal changes and nutritional needs.

Hijab Hair Loss Treatment

Specifically designed for hijabi women, this treatment addresses hair loss due to prolonged hijab wearing. DrScalp’s solutions ensure a gentle yet effective recovery for the scalp and hair.

Scalp Therapy

In general, scalp therapy involves treatments designed to soothe, hydrate, and rejuvenate the scalp. It can address dandruff, psoriasis, and dermatitis, promoting healthier hair growth through massages, oils, and medicated products.

Medication

When exploring treatment options for female hair loss in Singapore, you may consider a few types of medications.

Minoxidil

This topical solution can stimulate hair growth and is readily available as an OTC (over the counter) medication. While results vary, consistent application over several months is necessary for potential effectiveness.

Finasteride

Initially used for male hair loss, Finasteride is a prescription medication that may be beneficial. However, its use in women is subject to medical advice due to potential side effects and contraindications (reasons or conditions to avoid it).

Spironolactone

Spironolactone is a medicine prescribed off-label for androgenetic alopecia in women due to its anti-androgen effects, potentially reducing hair loss.

Corticosteroid Injections

These are injections of corticosteroids directly into the scalp. They’re used to treat alopecia areata and other inflammatory conditions causing hair loss, reducing inflammation and promoting hair regrowth.

Topical Immunotherapy

This treatment uses chemicals applied to the scalp to induce an allergic reaction, which can alter the immune response causing hair loss, such as in alopecia areata, encouraging hair regrowth.

Hormonal Balance

Efforts to restore hormonal balance can include the following:

Hormone Therapy

For hormonal disruptions, such as menopause or polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), specific PCOS hair loss treatments along with hormone replacement therapy might be considered to alleviate symptoms and potentially improve hair health.

Hair Transplant Surgery

In cases where hair loss is prominent, surgery may be a necessary option to help you restore your confidence.

Follicular Unit Transplantation (FUT)

FUT is a hair transplant method where a strip of scalp with healthy hair is removed, divided into grafts, and transplanted to balding areas, promoting natural-looking hair growth.

Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE)

This procedure involves removing healthy hair follicles from a donor site, usually the back of your head, and grafting them onto the thinning areas. This technique is lauded for its natural-looking results and minimal scarring.

Regenera Activa (Autologous Micrograft Transfer)

Regenera Activa is a minimally invasive hair restoration treatment that utilises the patient’s own tissue to stimulate hair growth. By extracting micro-grafts from the scalp and injecting them into areas affected by hair loss, it harnesses the body’s natural repair mechanisms. A key benefit is its ability to significantly reduce hair thinning and loss with minimal downtime, making it a convenient option for those seeking effective results.

Scalp Reduction Surgery

In some cases, scalp reduction surgery may be an appropriate treatment. This procedure involves the surgical removal of bald areas of the scalp, followed by the stretching and repositioning of the hair-bearing scalp to cover the removed section.

Non-Invasive Hair Loss Treatments

Low-Level Laser Therapy (LLLT)

A non-invasive option to address hair loss, this method uses photons emitted from laser diodes to rejuvenate scalp tissues, which can help to stimulate hair growth.

Platelet-rich Plasma (PRP) Injections

Another form of non-invasive treatment available in Singapore is blood-based therapy, often referred to as Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) injections or therapy. Here, your own blood is used. The process involves drawing a small amount of your blood, centrifuging it to concentrate the platelets, and then injecting this enriched plasma into your scalp to encourage hair growth.

Complementary Hair Loss Treatments

These treatments may be implemented as part of a hair loss treatment regime.

Scalp Boosters and Tonics

Designed to complement and amplify the effects of initial hair treatments, these tonics deeply nourish, hydrate, and calm the scalp. Formulated to work in harmony with treatments like those offered by DrScalp, they support the journey towards achieving denser, more robust hair growth.

Hair Supplements

Hair supplements, designed for optimal hair nutrition, are formulated with vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients to support hair growth and combat hair loss, enhancing overall hair health.

Stress Reduction Therapy

A therapeutic approach aimed at mitigating stress levels to prevent or reduce stress-induced hair loss. Techniques include mindfulness, meditation, and counselling to enhance overall well-being and hair health.

Nutritional Counselling

Personalised dietary advice focused on promoting hair growth and scalp health. A nutritionist identifies deficiencies and recommends a balanced diet rich in vitamins, minerals, and proteins essential for maintaining healthy hair.

Scalp Cooling Caps

A treatment used during chemotherapy to minimise hair loss. These caps cool the scalp, reducing the amount of chemotherapy medication reaching hair follicles, thereby lessening hair fall.

Female Hair Loss Treatment Procedure

When seeking treatment for female hair loss in Singapore, it’s critical to consult with a doctor specialising in treating hair loss conditions. Your journey begins with a consultation to diagnose the cause and determine the most effective treatment options.

Before the Procedure

Before receiving treatment, you’ll discuss your medical history, current health condition, and any previous treatments you’ve tried with a medical professional. Be transparent about any medications you’re taking, as these can influence the outcome of hair loss treatments.

Remember to ask questions and clarify any doubts. Keep in mind that treatment efficacy varies from person to person, and a tailored approach is often the best course of action.

During the Procedure

Below is a general outline of what you may expect from a female hair loss treatment in Singapore:

  • Consultation: The procedure typically begins with a consultation, where the specialist assesses your hair loss and discusses potential treatment options.
  • Preparation: Before the treatment starts, your hair and scalp are often prepared, which may include cleaning and applying a topical anaesthetic if necessary.
  • Treatment Application:
    • Medications: If your treatment involves topical solutions or medications, these are carefully applied to the affected areas of the scalp.
    • Minimally invasive procedures: For treatments like PRP (Platelet-Rich Plasma) therapy, your blood is drawn, processed, and then the concentrated platelets are injected into the scalp.
  • Monitoring: Throughout the treatment, your response is monitored to ensure both comfort and effectiveness.
  • Duration: Depending on the treatment, sessions can take anywhere from several minutes to over an hour.
  • Safety Measures: Clinics in Singapore adhere to strict hygiene and safety protocols to minimise risks.

Remember to follow any post-procedure care instructions provided by your hair loss specialist to maximise the benefits of the treatment.

After the Procedure

Follow-Up: Post-treatment care is crucial for effective results. Note your scheduled follow-up appointments to ensure your hair regrowth is progressing as expected.

  • Monitor your scalp for any unexpected changes in condition.
  • Keep a diary to record any new hair regrowth.
  • Avoid using harsh chemicals or treatments on your scalp, unless advised by your doctor.

Female Hair Loss Symptoms

frustrated woman experiencing hair loss
  • Reduction in volume or thinning: Early signs of hair loss often manifest as less fullness or finer strands.
  • A gradual thinning on the scalp: Often observed as a general indicator of hair loss, this may suggest a pattern of hair thinning.
  • Wider parting: If the area of your scalp where hair parts starts expanding, it’s often a hair loss indicator.
  • Increase in hair shedding: Losing 50 to 100 hairs daily is normal, but more noticeable shedding is a red flag.
  • Feeling of lightness in the hair or increased scalp visibility: These may be subtle hints of hair loss beginning.
  • Balding: In advanced cases, bald spots or extensive hair loss areas might develop.

If one or more of the above symptoms apply to you, see a healthcare provider or trichologist for diagnosis and treatment discussion.

Types of Female Hair Loss

Listed below are the types of female hair loss and their defining characteristics.

Telogen Effluvium (Stress-Related Hair Loss)

  • Description: Leads to an increase in hair shedding and noticeable thinning, often after a stressful event, physical trauma, or due to certain medications and nutritional deficits.
  • Causes:
    • Stress: Significant emotional or physical stress.
    • Nutritional Deficits: Lack of essential nutrients.
    • Medications: Side effects from certain drugs.

Androgenetic Alopecia (Genetic Hair Loss)

  • Description: Characterised by a progressive thinning of hair across the scalp, often starting between ages 12 and 40.
  • Causes:
    • Genetic Predisposition: Hereditary condition passed down from family members.

Alopecia Areata (Autoimmune Hair Loss)

  • Description: Sudden loss of hair in round patches, caused by an autoimmune response.
  • Causes:
    • Autoimmune Disorders: The immune system mistakenly attacks hair follicles.

Traction Alopecia (Hair Styling-Related Loss)

  • Description: Hair loss primarily around the forehead and temples caused by tight hairstyles that pull on the hair.
  • Causes:
    • Physical Stress on Hair: Continuous pulling from hairstyles or treatments.

Anagen Effluvium (Treatment-Induced Hair Loss)

  • Description: Rapid hair loss that occurs during the anagen (growth) phase of the hair cycle, often due to medical treatments.
  • Causes:
    • Medical Treatments: Such as chemotherapy, which disrupts hair growth.

Cicatricial Alopecia (Scarring Hair Loss)

  • Description: Permanent hair loss where the hair follicle is replaced with scar tissue, often accompanied by scalp inflammation.
  • Causes:
    • Scarring Conditions: Inflammation leading to destruction of the hair follicle.

Female Hair Loss Condition

Suggested In-Clinic Treatments

Androgenetic Alopecia

  • Scalp therapy
  • Platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections
  • Low Level Laser Therapy (LLLT)
  • Follicular Unit Transplantation (FUT)
  • Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE)
  • Regenera Activa

Telogen Effluvium

  • Stress reduction therapy
  • Nutritional counselling
  • Scalp therapy

Alopecia Areata

  • Corticosteroids
  • Topical immunotherapy
  • PRP injections

Traction Alopecia

  • Scalp therapy
  • PRP injections
  • Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE)
  • Regenera Activa

Anagen Effluvium

  • Scalp cooling caps during chemotherapy
  • Post-chemotherapy hair regrowth treatments (incl. Minoxidil and LLLT)

Cicatricial Alopecia

  • Corticosteroids
  • Scalp reduction surgery (if inflammation is controlled and there’s enough donor hair)

Causes of Female Hair Loss

  1. Genetic Predisposition: Genetic hair loss in women, known as female pattern baldness or androgenetic alopecia, is a hereditary condition that results in hair thinning.
  2. Stress: Telogen effluvium can occur after significant stress, leading to temporary hair loss that reverses when stress diminishes.
  3. Autoimmune Disorders: Conditions like alopecia areata cause patchy hair loss due to the immune system attacking hair follicles.
  4. Medical Treatments: Some treatments, notably chemotherapy, can induce anagen effluvium, leading to extensive hair loss.
  5. Physical Stress on Hair: Traction alopecia arises from tight hairstyles that pull the hair tightly, causing loss around the forehead and temples.
  6. Scarring Conditions: Cicatricial alopecia involves inflammation that destroys hair follicles, resulting in permanent and severe hair loss
  7. Hormonal Changes: Hair shedding or thinning can occur due to hormonal fluctuations during pregnancy or menopause.
  8. Underlying Health Conditions: Hair loss can be symptomatic of health issues like thyroid disorders or nutritional deficiencies.
  9. Lifestyle Factors: A lifestyle lacking in nutrition or physical activity can negatively affect hair health.

Benefits of Female Hair Loss Treatment

  • Improved Self-Esteem and Confidence: Treating hair loss can significantly boost self-image and confidence, helping women feel more comfortable and positive about their appearance.
  • Increased Hair Growth: Effective treatment can stimulate hair regrowth, leading to thicker, fuller hair and a more youthful appearance.
  • Healthier Scalp: Many treatments also improve scalp health, reducing issues like dryness, flaking, or itchiness, and creating a better environment for hair growth.
  • Prevention of Further Hair Loss: Early and appropriate treatment can help prevent or slow down the progression of hair loss, preserving existing hair.
  • Versatility in Hair Styling: With improved hair density and health, women may find they have more options for styling, allowing for greater creativity and expression through their hair.

For professional guidance on managing hair loss, we’re just one contact form away. The faster you act, the better the chances of salvaging your hair – so act now!

Ludwig Scale For Female Hair Loss

The Ludwig Scale is a visual chart used to classify female pattern baldness, also known as androgenic alopecia. It ranges from stages I to III:

Stages of hair loss

  • Stage I is subdivided into four levels (I-1 to I-4), showing a gradual increase in hair thinning around the parting. In-clinic treatments like scalp therapy, platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections, or FDA-approved laser therapy can be effective.
  • Stage II includes two levels (II-1 and II-2) where the parting widens, indicating more significant hair thinning. Treatments may involve a combination of PRP, topical medications like minoxidil, and possibly hormone therapy, depending on the individual’s needs.
  • Stage III consists of “Frontal” and “Advanced”. At this stage, hair loss becomes more pronounced at the top of the scalp, with a much wider parting and thinning that extends further. In-clinic options such as hair transplant surgery or scalp micropigmentation can be considered. Regular clinic visits for maintenance therapy may also be necessary to preserve the health of the existing hair.

Diagnosing Female Hair Loss

Scalp Analysis

Video trichoscopy, a detailed scalp analysis tool, allows for careful observation of the scalp to assess hair loss. At DrScalp, we carry out scalp analysis using AI technology.

Medical History

Your doctor will enquire about your family’s health history. A hereditary predisposition can often influence female pattern baldness.

Blood Work

Blood tests help detect issues like thyroid dysfunction or iron deficiency which can impair blood flow and affect scalp health.

Physical Exam

In a physical exam, doctors visually check for signs and symptoms of hair loss to identify specific patterns.

Specialised Testing

Beyond standard exams, you may undergo tests such as a biopsy or pull test to understand the health of your hair follicles.

Female Pattern Hair Loss (FPHL) vs Male Pattern Hair Loss (MPHL)

Benchmarks:

  • FPHL can be measured against the Ludwig Scale
  • MPHL can be measured against the Norwood Hamilton Scale

Genetic Link:

  • Both FPHL and MPHL result from androgenetic alopecia and are influenced by genetics.

Pattern of Hair Loss:

  • FPHL typically presents as thinning at the parting line and top of the scalp, rarely leading to full baldness.
  • MPHL often starts with a receding hairline and thins mainly at the top and crown, potentially forming an ‘M’ shape and possibly leading to full baldness.

Hormonal Influence:

  • FPHL can be triggered by menopause-related hormonal changes with DHT being less directly involved.
  • MPHL is greatly influenced by DHT, a testosterone derivative that shortens the hair growth cycle and shrinks hair follicles.

Suggested Treatments:

  • FPHL may be treated with topical minoxidil, hormone therapy, and occasionally, hair transplants in selective cases.
  • MPHL treatments often include finasteride to lower DHT levels, minoxidil for hair growth, and sometimes, hair transplants.

Female Hair Loss Treatment Risks

Medications like minoxidil may cause scalp irritation or unwanted hair growth on adjacent skin. Prescription drugs such as finasteride can lead to hormonal imbalances. Hair transplant surgery, though less common for women, carries its own risks, including infection or scarring. Always consult a healthcare professional before starting any treatment.

Female Hair Loss Treatment Complications

Treatments for hair loss might include medications that can occasionally lead to side effects, such as growth of unwanted facial hair and in rare cases cardiovascular issues. To manage risks effectively, discuss all concerns with your healthcare provider.

Female Hair Loss Treatment Costs in Singapore

Female Hair Loss Treatment

Cost Estimates in SGD

Minoxidil

SGD 40 – SGD 160 per month

Finasteride

SGD 180 – SGD 330 for 3 months

Spironolactone

Around SGD 20 for 30 tablets

Corticosteroid Injections

SGD 50 – SGD 200

Topical Immunotherapy

Up to SGD 5,000

Hormone Therapy

From SGD 170

Follicular Unit Transplantation (FUT)

SGD 6,000 – SGD 13,000

Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE)

SGD 6,000 – SGD 15,000

Regenera Activa (Autologous Micrograft Transfer)

Starts at around SGD 3,000

Scalp Reduction Surgery

Between SGD 6,000 – SGD 20,000

Light Therapy (LLLT)

Varies by clinic; up to SGD 6,500

PRP Therapy

Around SGD 1,000 per session

Note: These are estimated costs. Actual costs may vary based on the specific clinic, the extent of the treatment, and additional fees. It’s recommended to consult with a healthcare provider for precise pricing.

Are Subsidies For Female Hair Loss Treatment Available in Singapore?

In Singapore, female hair loss treatment is generally not covered by subsidies like MediSave as it’s a cosmetic procedure. For specific programmes and assistance, check with medical professionals and institutions such as the Ministry of Health (MOH) and your insurance provider.

Our Team of Hair & Scalp Specialists

  • The team at DrScalp is led by professors Dr. Tom K.C. Kuo and Dr. Kevin C. Weng, who specialise in stem cell biology, regenerative medicine, and biomedicine nanosystems.
  • Our commitment to excellence is demonstrated through significant investments and comprehensive testing, including over 30,000 trials to refine our Bio-Nano Cell Therapy among other hair and scalp products.
  • Emphasising non-invasive techniques, DrScalp utilises Bio-Nano Cells and Bio-Jetstream technology to address key scalp and hair concerns (including female hair loss) effectively and gently.

Feeling the blues because of hair loss? Connect with our specialists at DrScalp and take the first step towards regaining your confidence today.

Female Hair Loss Treatment Singapore Before and After Photos

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Sorry, folks – there’s nothing to see here! We’d be happy to show you the photos in person, though, so book an appointment with us or drop by our physical salon.

FAQ

Sudden hair loss may stem from various causes, including stress, hormonal imbalance, thyroid disorders and anaemia. Timely intervention by a professional can help reverse hair fall.

Yes, if your hair loss is not genetic. However, we recommend seeking the help of a professional, as using the wrong shampoos, hair products and/or DIY treatments could potentially worsen your hair loss.

It depends on the cause of hair loss. The good news is, if your hair loss is due to temporary stress or hormonal changes, regrowth is likely with proper treatment. Consult a specialist for tailored advice on hair regrowth options.

No, female hair loss treatments in Singapore generally cause minimal discomfort. Most procedures are non-invasive and focus on revitalising your scalp without pain.

Consider your family history and hair loss pattern. Genetic hair loss often starts at the centre parting with finer strands over time, influenced by family history. Temporary hair loss, like Telogen Effluvium, involves increased shedding across the scalp without thinning strands, and lacks a strong family link.

Certain foods in your diet may contribute to hair loss. Consider limiting the consumption of these foods:

  • High-sugar foods: They can disrupt your hormone balance, potentially leading to hair shedding.
  • Refined carbs: Similar effects to sugar, as they can elevate blood sugar levels.

In managing hair loss, prioritise a balanced diet rich in key nutrients:

  • Protein: Essential for hair growth. Include lean meats, fish, soy products.
  • Iron: Found in red meat, spinach, and lentils, supports follicles.
  • Zinc: Seafood and pumpkin seeds aid hair repair.
  • Vitamin B: Whole grains and eggs bolster hair health.
  • Vitamin E and Vitamin C: Snack on nuts and fruits for antioxidants that protect scalp health.
  • Use gentle, sulphate-free shampoos and conditioners
  • Avoid harsh chemical treatments and heat styling tools
  • Regularly moisturise and condition your hair
  • Incorporate a balanced diet rich in vitamins and minerals
  • Minimise stress through meditation or yoga
  • Use hair growth supplements as recommended by a healthcare provider
  • Protect hair from UV damage with hats or UV protectant sprays
  • Trim hair regularly to prevent split ends.

Medical References

Fabbrocini, G., Cantelli, M., Masarà, A., Annunziata, M. C., Marasca, C., & Cacciapuoti, S. (2018). Female pattern hair loss: A clinical, pathophysiologic, and therapeutic review. International Journal of Women’s Dermatology, 4(4), 203–211. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijwd.2018.05.001

Ho, C., Chen, J. Y., Hsu, W., Yu, S., Chen, W., Chiu, S., Yang, H., Lin, S., & Wu, C. (2023). Female Pattern Hair Loss: An Overview with Focus on the Genetics. Genes, 14(7), 1326. https://doi.org/10.3390/genes14071326

Iamsumang, W., Leerunyakul, K., & Suchonwanit, P. (2020). Finasteride and Its Potential for the Treatment of Female Pattern Hair Loss: Evidence to Date. Drug Design Development and Therapy, Volume 14, 951–959. https://doi.org/10.2147/dddt.s240615

Melo, D. F., De Almeida, R. F. C., Frattini, S. C., Santos, L. D. N., & Ramos, P. M. (2022). Minimally invasive procedures for the management of female pattern hair loss. Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology, 21(11), 5405–5408. https://doi.org/10.1111/jocd.15160

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