The Connection Between Hormonal Imbalance and Increased Hair Growth

How pregnancy, menopause, and androgen overproduction can lead to increased hair growth.

While some lament hair loss, others are concerned about hair gain. After pregnancy, when Neide was shedding hair, she also noticed new growth in “strange places,” such as her forehead and in the sideburn area.

The balance between testosterone, estrogen and progesterone can get out of whack during pregnancy and menopause. Women over 40 may see an increase in upper lip and chin hair.

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Androgens, hormones that prompt hair growth during puberty, also play a part. They’re responsible for the growth of hair in areas that respond to the hormone, such as the pubic region and armpits.

Coarse, dark hair in unwanted areas is known as hirsutism. It may indicate an overproduction of androgen or a high preponderance of sensitive follicles. Hirsutism could indicate polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), whose symptoms also include acne, menstrual irregularities and diabetes.

Other causes of unwanted hair growth include:

• Tumor or cancer of the adrenal gland, which releases hormones

• Issues with the pituitary gland, which produces the hormones that support and regulate metabolism

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• Cushing Syndrome, whose symptoms in women include facial, chest, neck, abdomen and thigh hair

• Anorexia nervosa, which can lead to the growth of fine hair over the face and body

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