Hair Loss and Self Esteem

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 12,898
    Dr. Matt Leavitt with the Hair Foundation discusses self esteem issues associated with hair loss.

    Matt L. Leavitt: Hi! I'm Dr. Matt Leavitt with the Hair Foundation. Today, I will be talking about hair loss and self-esteem. As a physician treating the most serious cases of hair loss and trauma over 20 years, I can tell you hair loss is one of the most devastating appearance issues that people can face. If you have hair loss there are number of psychological issues and feelings that you maybe having.

    You're not alone. It is very common for men and women to feel embarrassed and insecure. Many people wear hats or avoid difficult situations such as swimming that would highlight their hair loss. In clinical studies, none with hair loss reported that they had a less attractive appearance, decreased self-confidence, and decreased esteem. Younger men and those with more hair loss are most concerned.

    Men are concerned about all hair loss and all aspects from the professional arena to socializing. Supporting these concerns, a European study found that men with less hair loss are less likely to get higher than the men who have hair. We live in a feel-good society that places a lot of emphasis on personal appearance such as skincare, we hire personal trainers, we seek to be in the best fitness shape we can. To combat this, men grow facial hair, constantly wear hats to camouflage hair loss and baldness or even shave their head.

    For women self-esteem is greatly affected by hair loss sometimes even more than men. They suffer feelings of decreased self-confidence, uncertainty, shame, and feelings of inferiority. There are no female role models with significant hair loss. Graying or balding in women is not perceived as distinguished but it's perceived as aging or a disease. It is also common for women to alter their behavior in their daily routine.

    Some women avoid chalk writing to keep from bending their heads which would reveal hair loss or just stay away from places with strong illumination, most stayed home when it was raining or windy and avoided swimming or walking in the sun. For women with hair loss, there can be psychological problems such as depression, isolation, and a challenge to leave the house or work. If you're struggling with hair loss and self-esteem, reach out to family and friends for support and speak to your doctor who specializes in hair loss, discuss your concerns, and please seek treatment.