Excess Face & Body Hair- Causes & Treatments
How to remove excess hair from face, hands, legs, and body permanently?
Dealing with hair on body creates quite a paradox! While thick hair on the head are considered to be a benchmark of beauty, thick hair on any other body part becomes quite a cause of concern for both genders. Women consider excessive body hair to be one of the biggest beauty problems after weight gain and improper body size.
The number of men seeking laser hair removal has risen by 85%. The cause of excessive body hair in men can be due to genes, ethnicity, or high levels of testosterone.
The amount of hair on a person’s body is determined by the hormones in a person. Men have dark and coarse hair in certain areas like chest and abdomen because of a condition called hirsutism. The production of testosterone causes hair growth in males. Female hormones like estrogen and progesterone do no cause increase in hair growth. In some cases, if a female body starts to produce too much androgen, unwanted hair growth may occur.
Presence or lack of body hair marks an important distinction between the genders. Excessive body hair may cause a woman to appear and feel under confident.
One of the most common causes of hirsutism in women is Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome. Women suffering from PCOS may suffer from additional symptoms like irregular menstrual cycles, acne, weight gain, diabetes etc. sometimes a tumor is formed in females which releases male hormones. Therefore excessive body hair could be a marker of a hormonal issue in the body. Rarely, excessive body hair could be due to cancer of adrenal gland, Cushing Syndrome, ovarian cancer, Hyperthecosis, use of certain medicines like anabolic steroids, phenytoin, cyclosporine etc.
PCOS is a condition in which the ovaries in a female produce excessive testosterone. This problem is becoming increasingly common and is considered to be one of the most common causes of unwanted hair in females. PCOS is different from polycystic ovaries. In cases of PCOS, both cysts and symptoms are present which are caused by excess of testosterone. Almost 40% of women with PCOS suffer from infertility.
For a woman, coping with beard and moustache can be a herculean task. Excessive body hair can impact a woman’s confidence severely and can be detrimental to mental health also.
Many women continue living with poor skin health, excessive hair and irregular periods. But irregular menstrual cycle can be an indication of an underlying problem. If the cycle is not regulated by the age of 16 and even a single symptom of PCOS, a doctor should be consulted. The condition can be easily diagnosed by hormonal tests and ultra-sonography of the abdomen.
It is important for women to maintain healthy weight and avoid too much processed foods. As processed foods are synthesized, suddenly the level of insulin rises in the body. The raised level of insulin may trigger growth factors which can lead to production of testosterone by the ovaries.
Other causes of excessive hair growth could be skin disorders such as eczema and psoriasis, eating disorders like anorexia, menopause, use of oral contraceptives etc.
Contrary to myths, shaving or plucking do not cause hair to become thicker and stronger. Various treatments to remove excessive body hair are effective but only temporarily. Waxing causes ingrown hair while shaving is not suitable for over sensitive skin.
The best method to combat excessive hair permanently is laser hair removal. In this treatment, the hair follicles are destroyed by exposing them to pulses of laser light. Laser causes localized damage to hair follicles without damaging the nearby skin. The treatment is most suitable for dark hair and not effective for pale hair. Two most effective types of permanent hair removal are long pulsed Nd:YAG laser & the diode laser. It is the most effective treatment for excessive hair growth.
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