Unwanted Body Hair- What’s the permanent solution?

Body hair, also known as androgenic hair is normally developed during and after the puberty. These hairs are different from head hair and vary in number, color, and thickness individually. Androgenic hormones, mainly testosterone is the key regulator of body hair growth. Males tend to have coarser and denser hairs than female. Hair is an important sensory organ of our body, sending important sensory input to our brain and spinal cord.

Causes of unwanted or excess body hair

There are multiple factors that can result in excess unwanted body hair. Women tend to get affected more due to hormonal imbalance. Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is a common medical condition that can cause the growth of unwanted excess body or facial hair. Disease of the adrenal gland and certain medication like the steroids can also cause excess unwanted body or facial hair.

How to deal with unwanted hair

Unwanted or excess body and facial hair can be very disturbing and a long-term challenge for many.  The problem can be managed medically if there is a hormonal imbalance or a specific disease condition is to blame. Many hair removal techniques are popular like shaving, waxing or using depilatories (chemical foams). Those who are tired of shaving and waxing- laser hair removal treatments are the best choice for them. Laser hair removal can permanently reduce hair growth. The lasers target the hair follicles and can kill off the hair producing cells. Several treatments are necessary to achieve the target response and one might need a touch-up treatment every year. Fluctuations in hormone levels can trigger new hair growth. Also, during the treatment period avoiding sun exposure is ideal. Side effects are very minimum and mostly redness and mild swelling of the treated area which resolves itself. 

Author
Mahmood Siddique Board certified physician Mahmood I. Siddique, DO, FACP, FCCP, FAASM, takes a modern, holistic approach to caring for his patients at Sleep and Wellness Medical Associates in Hamilton, New Jersey. He believes medicine is most effective when it considers not just the patient’s symptoms, but the broader connections among their overall physical, emotional, and mental health and well-being.

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