Hair Loss in Swimmers
Dear Dr. Mohebi,
I’ve been watching the Olympics and have really been enjoying the female swimming competition. The ladies spend so much time in the pool that I was curious if it can damage their hair. Can swimming in a chlorine pool make you go bald?
This a very timely and interesting question! In general, a good number of women have a naturally receded hairline or foreheads that tend to be higher than normal. Why? As the years have passed, women with male hormones or some elevated androgen often develop a recessive hairline that is similar to adult men and is called male patterned hairline maturation. This can also be the result of a male patterned hair loss gene that has been passed on to them from their mother or father.
Please note there is no evidence that suggests any increase in male hormones in female athletes is the result of strenuous physical activities.
For women who are suffering from hair loss, my 5-Step Management System for female hair loss can be a big help in addressing the issue. One of my first steps is ordering a comprehensive set of lab tests including the levels of total and free testosterone and DHEA in women with a male patterned hairline or females who lose their hair in a male pattern. Any female with a recessive hairline that impacts their quality of life can see great benefits from a hair transplant procedure.
An effective hair transplant method for females is lowering the hairline via follicular unit hair transplantation. This procedure alters the hairline perceived as masculine to a natural feminine hairline. These cases involve women that often lack hair loss signs in other areas of the scalp so they have a good amount of transplant donor hair. A reasonable level of density can normally be achieved in one or two procedures.
Thank you for the interesting question. Just like you, our entire staff is enjoying the Olympics and cheering on Team USA. Congratulations to all of our athletes on their accomplishments!