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You could have excessive facial hair growth due to genetics, a hormonal imbalance or a related underlying medical condition. Many women have abnormal hair growth due to a condition called hirsutism, and some could have polycystic ovary syndrome, or PCOS. Certain herbal remedies could help reduce your facial hair growth, but consult your doctor before trying any natural remedy.
Abnormal, excessive facial hair growth in women is often due to hirsutism, a condition involving elevated androgens or male sex hormones, explains the University of Maryland Medical Center 1. These increased hormone levels can cause dark, coarse hair growth on a woman’s face, chest and back. Although the condition often doesn’t have a clear cause, hirsutism may occur due to a genetic trait or by congenital adrenal hyperplasia, which causes increased androgen and cortisol production, MayoClinic.com notes 2. In many cases, abnormal hair growth due to hirsutism is accompanied by acne, irregular menstrual cycles and other masculine traits such as enlarged muscles, a deep voice or male-pattern balding.
In some cases, excessive facial hair growth could occur due to a more serious underlying medical condition such as:
- Cushing’s syndrome
- or ovarian or adrenal-gland tumors
- MayoClinic.com says 2
Certain medications such as the endometriosis drug danazol can also cause hirsutism. PCOS is a chronic condition involving cysts that develop on immature egg follicles. Cushing’s syndrome involves elevated levels of the hormone cortisol.
Certain herbal remedies can potentially counteract the increased androgen hormone production that usually causes hirsutism. You can take medicinal herbs such as saw palmetto, black cohosh, chaste tree or spearmint tea for their anti-androgenic effects, says the University of Maryland Medical Center 1. If you have hirsutism due to PCOS, you could take cinnamon, chromium or green tea to help reduce your symptoms, notes the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center 1. Other natural supplements such as:
- B-complex vitamins
- or DIM
- could also help treat hirsutism
Ask your physician about the dosage that’s right for you before taking any herbal or natural supplement for abnormal facial hair growth.
Other natural treatments can also help reduce facial hair growth. You could try acupuncture or a healthy diet that’s rich in antioxidant foods to reduce your hair growth, says the University of Maryland Medical Center 1. You might take care of your facial hair by bleaching, plucking, shaving, waxing or using topical hair-removal chemicals, MayoClinic.com notes 2. Laser therapy and electrolysis are more permanent solutions to getting rid of hair. Alternatively, your doctor may prescribe birth control pills, anti-androgen drugs such as Aldactone or topical creams such as Vaniqa to treat hirsutism. Removing tumors or your ovaries could be necessary if you have related underlying medical problems.
Before you try any treatment for excessive facial hair growth, see your doctor for an accurate diagnosis of the cause. Unless the cause is undetermined, you’ll likely need treatment for the underlying medical condition.
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