Right now, it feels like my medical life is never going to come to an end. Mentally I’ve been…. okay. I’ve been slacking on journaling and I haven’t had therapy in awhile (but I made an appointment so that’s good!). My main focus now has been my physical health.
Since I work at a dermatology office (as I’ve mentioned 3 billion times) I had a consult to discuss my thinning hair. I’ve always had thin hair but within the last year or so it’s become pretty noticeable. After some lab work and a scalp biopsy, I got diagnosed with Androgenetic Alopecia.
Androgenetic alopecia, also known as female/male pattern hair loss, is unfortunately genetic and can be worsened with hormone changes and stress. The hair loss happens at the top of the scalp. For women, hair will thin and the part starts to widen. For men, it’s often that the hairline will start to recede and bald patches can happen. This is what my scalp currently looks like
So yeah…at almost 24 years old this was not something I wanted to hear. I’m young and supposed to be exploring life and having fun! I shouldn’t have to worry about me losing my hair. I gave myself time to cry and let the information sink in and then it was time to get my shit together.
The first thing I started was taking Nutrafol supplements. They come highly recommended by dermatologists because these supplements have everything your body needs to try and regrow the hair and make it stronger. I’ve been taking them for over a month now and haven’t noticed any immediate change. Hair regrowth is a process though; it can take 6 months to a year before I start seeing big results. One downside to the Nutrafol? They’re expensive but I recommend giving it a try! Taking just biotin didn’t work for me. Nutrafol was created by dermatologists so it’s got all the necessary nutrients needed for hair regrowth.
Next, I changed up my shampoo and conditioner. I was using the brand Bosley and had their hair restoration items but after a year of using the products, I didn’t notice anything different. I went ahead and bought from the brand Nisim. What makes this set a better option is that the shampoo has DHT blockers. DHT is a hormone that affects your hair’s regrowth. The one thing I’ve noticed so far is that my scalp doesn’t feel dry or super itchy anymore so that makes me feel really positive about my switch!
The other thing that we found out was that my Ferritin levels are low. Ferritin is basically the stored iron in your body. My regular iron levels are fine because my body is pulling from the storage. We caught it quick enough that I don’t have to take any drastic changes to get my iron levels back up but I do need to be proactive in getting them back to a normal range. I want to avoid taking iron supplements if possible so I’m going to try and increase my iron intake through diet. I recheck my iron levels in about 3 months and if it doesn’t change then I’ll discuss with my doctors what action to take next.
I wanted to give y’all a quick update and just share more about my health journey. When I started this blog, I had an idea of what I wanted it to be like – your typical lifestyle blog with my own personal touch. But now I’ve found that I have a platform that I can use to educate and comfort others that go through the same illnesses as me. If you would have told me when I was 18 years old that this was how I was going to be starting my adult life I would have called you crazy. Constantly going to doctor appointments, being in pain, and being given bad news is all too much sometimes – it’s hard to stay positive. So I’m extremely happy and grateful for my support system and my family because I don’t know how I’d get through all of this without them.
If you have alopecia or want to learn more about it, click here!