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Stress Causing Hair Loss In Some Younger Women

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) -- We've come to accept stress as a part of our daily lives.

But for women, especially younger women, there's a new and embarrassing effect of stress - hair loss.

She's only 25, but a relentless schedule has taken a noticeable toll on Jenna Milazzo.

"I've noticed in the past six months just some thinning of my hair up here around the face a little bit. It's a little troublesome for me to say the least," Milazzo said.

Milazzo was so worried about her hair loss; she went to a doctor who specializes in hair restoration.

"I would say about 15 or 20 percent of mostly female [patients] complaining of hair loss are probably due to stress," said Dr. Robert Dorin, a hair restoration surgeon.

"I just never had that much hair come out in the shower, in my brush," said Milazzo. "It was so out of the ordinary; I could tell something was wrong."

Dr. Dorin concluded that Milazzo is suffering the consequence of a busy lifestyle.

"What we're talking about is stress hair loss, stress causing hair loss," says Dr. Dorin.

And in a seemingly vicious cycle for Milazzo, and other women, the stress they experience because of losing their hair can sometime make things even worse.

"A woman coming in with luscious thick hair, and now all of sudden it has less volume or they see it thinning and to watch it fall before their eyes is quite anxiety building," Dr. Dorin says.

But for the growing number of women suffering from the devastation of stress-related hair loss, there is hope. Reducing stress is a vital first step, along with improving your diet and getting more sleep.

In addition, Rogaine has been effective, and there are even FDA-approved laser treatments that can help stimulate dormant hair follicles.

"I think it will be okay as long as I get help and I stop it before it gets too bad," said Milazzo. "I would be panicking if I waited too long and I saw a really thick part of actual bald spots. I don't see that yet, but I definitely want to stop it before it gets too bad."

By making important lifestyle changes and effectively reducing stress, experts say you can expect hair to be fully restored to normal fullness.

But you have to be patient; full restoration can sometimes take a year or more.

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