It is normal to have hairs and they even have a number of uses: protecting us from cold as well as heat and light, they are the shield of our body. That they prevent being invaded by grains of dust and other foreign bodies, at the same time that they serve as odor sensors and filter for our organism. Making a natural barrier against the outside. Nevertheless, the hairs are frowned upon in our current society, the diktat of fashion by doing the thing to be exterminated par excellence and hirsutism too!
So when you have too much, especially for a woman, it can be very disabling! However, it is estimated that between 5 and 10% of women in France are affected by what is called hirsutism , a symptom which causes them an abnormally large hair growth. Let’s go further on hirsutism, then we will see more about the hair of the human being, man or woman, in general.
So what is hirsutism?
Better known as hyperpilosity , hirsutism is a typical female problem. For a woman, it consists of having hair in places where it is not normally expected, so on areas without hair or almost in women (unlike in men). These women will then have the face, the neck, the thorax, the buttocks, the back… which could be covered with dark and thick hairs which spoil their existence. This is the case of women who today have a mustache or of those women with beards who have long been an object of curiosity! For these women, the hair comes to impose itself where we really do not expect it. And, it forces them to hide in one way or another.
Be careful, do not confuse hirsutism with hypertrichosis, which consists of a simple significant hair growth in places where women already commonly have hair. Women with hypertrichosis simply have more body hair than average. In the case of hirsutism, they develop significant hair growth in much more unexpected places . We also speak of pilar virilism for this aesthetic concern which will generally start during the first period in adolescents, therefore at the time of puberty, and then increase.
At the time of puberty, female hormones are believed to develop under the action of the ovaries. But it sometimes happens, in a small percentage of women all the same, that a hormonal imbalance is observed between female hormones and male hormones, resulting in significant hair growth at that time.
It should also be pointed out that hirsutism is not a disease in itself but a symptom of potentially more serious problems, which should therefore not be taken lightly and monitored closely!
The possible recourse of hirsutism with drug treatments
Note that you can apply eflornithine- based creams such as Vaniqa cream to areas of significant hair growth , which slows down hair regrowth. This cream is the remedy for hair growth. I advise you to visit this page dedicated to Vaniqa cream to better understand it.
This Vaniqa cream is particularly powerful to fight against your facial hair. It was developed to reverse the course of hair growth by acting directly on the growth molecules. Thus, after 4 to 6 weeks of use your hairs will be rarer, smaller, less dark.
There are also anti-androgen treatments like the molecule known as cyproterone acetate. Your doctor may also advise you to take an estrogen-progestogen pill (Diane, Yasmine, Yaz…), allowing you to regulate your hormone level and rebalance your percentage of male hormones and female hormones in your blood. Usually, the pill will start to affect your hair growth concerns after six months.
Your doctor, in addition to these medications, may advise you to have a healthier diet , to eliminate excessively fatty products from the latter, excess red meat, but also alcohol and tobacco. Staying hydrated is also highly recommended. But the easiest solution is often Vaniqa cream based on eflornithine .
The consequences of hirsutism
Hirsutism is generally very disabling for women, who will have a hard time supporting the heavy gaze of others on them. Some will then develop social phobias, behavioral disorders and will feel particularly bad about themselves, losing all self-confidence. Their excessive hairiness can then become a real handicap for them, a real obsession which can in many cases lead them to depression. It is indeed very difficult for her to take responsibility for herself and not be complexed by their appearance, while they live in a society where hair is frowned upon. They often do not dare to talk about their problem, which quickly becomes a taboo subject for her. This is why it is advisable to start the Vaniqa cream as soon as possible because it begins to act after 4 to 6 weeks of use for this treatment hirsutism.
On the physical level, hirsutism can also have certain unfortunate consequences such as gestational diabetes, overweight problems, excessively high blood pressure or cardiovascular disease … Hence the need to be well taken care of by healthcare professionals. health when you are subject to this atypical hair disorder!
The different hairs of men and women:
Our body, whether man or woman, is covered with millions of hairs , which come from the hair follicles implanted in our dermis. However, all hairs are not the same. There are commonly three different types:
- so-called constitutional hair, namely the hair, eyelashes and eyebrows as well as the hair covering our legs and forearms. These hairs have the particularity of developing from our birth and are specific to humans in general.
- so-called ambosexual hairs , which appear at the time of puberty in the armpits and the pubic area. Men and women are again normally concerned.
- then the testoid hairs , which are hard and thick and mainly located on the face (mustache, beard, etc.). These are associated with humans because they come from male hormones called androgens. Women are therefore not supposed to have them. The only hairs they’re supposed to have on the upper lip is what’s called down and that’s it. But it turns out that sometimes things do not turn out like this for some women …
Where does hirsutism come from? The causes of its development:
Usually, this abnormally developed hair problem is caused by too much male hormones (androgens), such as testosterone, in a woman’s blood. This proliferation will then lead among other things to the significant development of the hairs and their length, while making them thicker and darker.
But beyond a hormonal disorder, this problem can be a symptom of certain diseases such as Stein-Leventhal or Cushing’s syndromes or tumors in the ovaries, benign or malignant. A problem of so-called polykistic ovaries, generally leading to infertility problems in parallel, can then be the cause of hirsutism. This syndrome is the cause of nearly 80% of cases and can also be recognized by other symptoms: a deep voice, oily skin, acne on different areas of the body such as the face and back, irregular periods, greater muscle mass, thickening of the clitoris, atrophy of the breasts… All these signs must suggest a major hormonal problem! Fortunately there are treatment hirsutism
But other causes can explain hirsutism:
- family history (action of genetics in this case). In general, if you are hairy, it is very likely that your mother was just as much … It is indeed very often a problem which is transmitted from mother to daughter. This is referred to as familial or idiopathic hirsutism, which in this case occurs without an underlying medical cause. The most affected are Europeans of Mediterranean origin and brunettes in general.
- taking certain anabolic drugs or drugs with marked androgenic effects. This concerns in particular drugs used to treat high blood pressure or epilepsy.
- being too sensitive to male hormones, even when they are in normal numbers in the blood
- a high level of insulin
- it can also develop at the time of menopause , which is a period of hormonal upheaval in general anyway in a woman’s life. Many women then complain about seeing new hairs growing all over their body. But in general, this develops little and this is explained by the fall of the estrogen secreted, while the production of androgens remains the same.
- an obesity problem can be a risk area. In fact, estrogens tend to transform into androgens in fatty tissue and obesity also leads to insulin resistance. Hence a greater excess of male hormone production for very overweight women.
What to do in case of hirsutism?
Hirsutism is not at the same time an end in itself and solutions exist to remedy it, in a more or less radical way.
The first thing to do in all cases is to get closer to your gynecologist-endocrinologist, so that he does a hormonal assessment and that he measures your degree of hairiness. He will prescribe a blood test to measure the level of testosterone in your blood. From there, your doctor can then tell you whether or not you have hirsutism. If so, don’t panic though. Several means are available to you to eradicate all these hairs ruining your existence!
Classic solutions against hirsutism
It is of course possible first of all to resort to conventional methods such as waxing or even depilatory cream (less painful solution). The problem in this case is that these are only aesthetic solutions, which do not address the root of the problem and only pull the hair out for a while. After 2-3 weeks, the hairs will come back with this method, which can also cause skin irritations … It is more recommended to use the Vaniqa cream which comes to fight with durability against the hairs.
In any case, it is important not to use a razor or epilator for men, which would only aggravate your hair problem by making your hair harder and more visible the next time you grow back.
The tweezers are not suitable either because using it would require too much time while the bleaching cream would not be effective enough, the hairs still remaining visible with it although the effect is reduced … There is many solutions and treatment hirsutism
More radical solutions
Other more radical and therefore more effective treatments are also possible:
- laser hair removal or pulsed light in the first place. This method is the most expensive but also the most efficient. It will take 120 euros on average for a single session treating the neck or chin area (a certain amount that can be reimbursed by social security). 5 to 10 sessions are usually necessary to eradicate the problem, sessions which should be spaced at least 6 weeks apart each time. This hair removal is done by a dermatologist who will adjust the intensity of the laser according to the color of the hair and who will burn it to the root. This method is especially effective on dark hair. It is advisable not to epilate yourself or to discolor your hair during the entire treatment and not to expose yourself to the sun as well.
- electrolysis or electric hair removal : this method consists of the implantation of a needle at the level of the hairs, a needle which will pass electric shocks reaching the hair follicle, and this to radically prevent the regrowth of the hairs. A particularly painful solution, to be reserved only for the most reckless!
- If your hirsutism problem stems from an ovarian tumor, surgical treatment should be considered this time.
Hirsutism is therefore ultimately a very disabling problem for women, who can question themselves when they see these very annoying hairs appear on their body. It should not be ignored or treated lightly, often being the first sign of other bigger concerns. In any case, various solutions, whether medical, surgical or aesthetic, now exist to eliminate this problem of excessive hair growth. If you have hirsutism, you should never be defeatist and do not hesitate to do everything to try to pull all these hairs from your body and from your life!