What is hirsutism? How to treat excessive hair?

3 November 2023
A woman who suffers from hirsutism, or excessive hair. En

Is your skin hair very visible and intense? It could be hirsutism, or excessive hair in women. Even teenagers struggle with this affliction, but it also happens that hirsutism develops only in later years of life. What are the causes of this ailment? What are the treatments for hirsutism?

Hirsutism – what is it?

Hirsutism is the medical term for excessive body hair in women. The disorder is manifested by the appearance of dark, stiff and coarse hair on the face and body. These strands are highly visible and appear in areas rather associated with male beards and hair. This problem affects about 10% of ladies and often begins as early as puberty. In some people, hirsutism develops later – for example, during pregnancy or menopause.

Hirsutism – symptoms

Hirsutism usually involves the face (usually the chin and upper lip) and other areas of the body. If you are struggling with this problem, you may notice excessive hair on your chest, abdomen, feet and even back. This affliction is most often the result of high levels of androgens – hormones that predominate in men.

Other symptoms of increased androgen production:

  • weight loss,
  • lowered voice,
  • alopecia,
  • acne,
  • reduction in breast size,
  • clitoral hypertrophy,
  • menstrual disorders,
  • Problems with getting pregnant.

Increased production of androgens can be caused by various factors. An excess of these hormones can cause many discomforts. So if you suspect that you are affected by hirsutism, consult a doctor. You can make an appointment with a gynecologist or endocrinologist – on the basis of hormonal tests it will be possible to make a diagnosis and implement optimal treatment.

Keep in mind, fine hair on the arms, calves or tiny hairs on the feet are not symptoms of hirsutism, but a completely normal issue. Exorbitant beauty standards and the fashion for depilation of almost the entire body in women promote complexes due to the presence of hair on the skin.

Excessive body hair in women and its causes

The main cause of hirsutism in women is high levels of male hormones – primarily testosterone. Genetic conditions may also predispose to the disorder.

Factors affecting the increased production of male sex hormones in women:

  • Insulin resistance – this affliction raises the risk of developing polycystic ovarian syndrome, which in turn increases the risk of hirsutism.
  • Adrenal gland disorders – Cushing’s syndrome and other conditions associated with abnormal adrenal function cause high androgen production in women.
  • Polycystic ovary syndrome – this disease also contributes to excessive production of male hormones.
  • Overweight and obesity – they cause hormonal disturbances, and these can manifest themselves in the appearance of unwanted hair on the face and body.
  • Taking selected medications – the use of contraceptives or certain endometriosis preparations also contributes to hirsutism.
  • Stress – excessive stress is another of the causes of producing too much male hormones, especially testosterone. This can result in abundant body and facial hair in women.

Hirsutism – treatment

The basis for treating this disorder is to determine its cause. If in your case it is due to hormonal changes, to deal with hirsutism, take care to equalize hormone levels. On the other hand, when the cause of excessive facial and body hair is the use of medications, consult a specialist. This one will suggest you other preparations or change the dosage of those you have been taking so far.

Removal of excessive hair on the face and body – specialized treatments

In addition to careful diagnosis and treatment under the guidance of a specialist (dermatologist, endocrinologist, and sometimes gynecologist), aesthetic medicine treatments are also helpful in the fight against excessive hair. Thanks to them, you will remove unwanted hair effectively and for a long time – unlike classic depilation methods.

Removal of excessive hair – recommended treatments:

  • Laser epilation – a modern and irreplaceable method in the fight against excessive hair. As the name suggests, laser epilation is a procedure performed using a laser. The procedure is practically painless (it is possible to feel warmth and slight stinging), as the device is equipped with a head with a cooling system. The procedure is best performed in a series – the number of repetitions depends on the degree of hair, as well as its color and skin phototype.
  • IPL light epilation – this method is similar to laser epilation, but slightly less precise. The pulsed light beam reaches the skin and hair follicles, damages them and causes the disappearance of hair on the selected area of the skin. This type of epilation is mainly recommended for people with fair skin and dark hair due to its lower precision. Laser epilation can be used even if the contrast between skin and hair color is not very high.

The above treatments are proven ways to reduce excessive hair. Performed in a series, they will provide a lasting effect. You may also need to perform occasional touch-up treatments – this is an individual matter. Certainly, laser epilation and IPL techniques provide better results than traditional methods of shaving and depilating the body.

Karol Popko

Karol Popko is an experienced author whose pen has been shining in the lifestyle world for many years. With his copywriting practice and insight into trends, he not only shares practical tips, but also opens up a deeper understanding of these topics to his readers. According to Karol, beauty can be found everywhere, and life is worth celebrating with passion and style.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *