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Dr Dawn: If you’re a woman and have unwanted facial hair, understandably you’re going to feel self conscious about it but excessive facial hair, or hirsutism, is not an uncommon problem and actually affects up to 15% of women. Hirsutism is diagnosed as an excess of thick, often dark hair on the face, chest, abdomen or upper back, basically all the areas that hair is found on a man. We all have some male hormones called androgens; those with higher levels are more likely to suffer with excessive hair growth. Producing too many androgens can be due to an underlying medical condition. For example, polycystic ovary syndrome produces large amounts of the androgen testosterone and many women with hirsutism have this condition. Excessive facial hair is also associated with age. At least 25% of normal middle aged women remove unwanted facial hair and many notice an increase in facial hair growth once they go through the menopause. It’s also a problem that tends to run in families. So, what can be done? Well, there are lots of options available to women. Many resort to shaving and contrary to popular belief shaving doesn’t make hair grow back thicker and faster, but it is only a short term solution that can leave you with unpleasant stubble so it’s not ideal. Hair removal creams or bleaching work well but they need to be used regularly. Electrolysis and laser treatment provide a more permanent solution but they don’t come cheaply and they can be very time consuming. There are several prescription treatments available including an anti-androgen drug which helps slows down hair growth and some contraceptive pills with specific creams which inhibit hair growth. So if you suffer from facial hair make an appointment to see your GP who will be able to tell you why this is happening and advise on the best course of action for you. Your doctor will explain any possible side effects and what you should expect from any treatment. They’ll also be able to discuss some other options such as electrolysis or laser treatment. Although these treatments aren’t generally available on the NHS your GP may be able to recommend a reputable private clinic in your area.

Read the video transcript

Quick Health Advice: Unwanted Facial Hair

Women who suffer from excessive facial hair (or hirsutism) can feel extremely self-conscious, but the condition is not uncommon and affects up to 15% of women. In this exclusive guide, Dr Harper discusses the symptoms and causes of this condition, as well as the best treatment options available. Excessive facial hair can be embarrassing, but there are plenty of ways to remove it, either temporarily or on a more permanent basis.

Remember that you should always check with a health professional if you have any concerns about your health.

If you are worried that you child is suffering from excessive hair, read the condition guide especially for parents on Embarrassing Bodies: Kids.

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I am 33 and i've had unwanted facial hair for around 10 years. At first it was only 1 or 2, but now i have it all around my jaw line, neck and chin. I've been to the doctor several times, all they do is take a blood text for hormone imbalance which always comes back negative and told I've basically got to live with it. I'm not convinced that there is no medical reason why i'm getting these hairs, but not sure what else I can ask the GP to do?! I've tried everything, wax, shave, plucking and laser - they're now the worst they've been and I am plucking them twice a day. It's really getting me down, especially as it's getting close to summer and the're more noticeable. I literally hate myself.





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Around two years ago i became really worried about the hair growth on my face and became so upset about this i shaved it off using a wet shave. I now suffer every morning having to get rid of the facial hair before applying my makeup. Do you have any advice which could help remove all this facial hair for good and stop the growth. Many Thanks.





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hi i am 27 years old. i have a lot of unwanted hair in my body.such as upper lip,chin, belly,chest. but i don't know how can i remove from this problem.pls tell me this problem solution.





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Why can't I get better mental health issues and find it hard to talk face-to-face to people panic attacks of dentists, anxiety, low confidence low self esteem , etc any advice ?





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I have so much facial and body hair. I have spent £2000 on laser, I wax my legs every 4 weeks.I have my upper lip chin and kneck threaded every week. My hair is so thick I bleeds . It hurts my skin when it grows back. Ingrown hair is also a pain. I'm told nothing can be done by my Gp. Its because I have polycystic ovaries and under active thyroid. I hate going outside.





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My girlfriend shaves her face. She started when she was 15. It was first only blond hair but when she was 20 she had a beard. It grew more with the years. She hide it in the beginning but after she didn't care. We actually found it exciting. She used to shave two times a day but after we spoke about it she did it only every morning.





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I'm now 30 years old. I've had facial hair since I can remember. I was relentlessly teased as a child. Called names, cigarettes put out in my hair, whispers, and children asking their mothers whats wrong with me. I was so depressed I thought about suicide and even burning my skin so it would grow back. I couldn't take it any loner. I bleached, waxed, plucked, buffed, trimmed, and even shaved. Some days my skin was so red and raw it hurt all the time. My last effort was laser and I saw a huge reduction. Not everything but I think it was fully worth it and I plan to sign up for another round. Be warned though it is expensive but again soooo worth it.





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Hi ....there i also have facial hair .... its embrassing ca some one tell me y is it soo?





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Hi i am a 13 year old girl. I have hair on my chin, chest ,on my lower abdomen, basically i have hair EVERYWHERE. i was wondering what is the cause of the growth of chin hair because its making me Very insecure and i have been teased alot. Do you anything home remedy to remove excessive hair? Thank you in advanced.





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hey even i had just try to reduce your weight and be control in junk foods everything will be alright

Plucking a lot and shaving everyday baby I am 35 years old and started growing black facial hair since I started having periods at 11 years old. Also putting on a good foundation like clinique will conceal a bunch of the 5 o clock shadow but plucking hairs out by the root keeps them where you don't see the root. Your mother needs to take you to obgyn and get checked for pcos ultrasound and blood work.

Hi,am 24 years old,I got married last year,after some few months I noticed am lactating,I did a pregnancy test but it was negative,so I rushed to hopital,the doctor suggested for a test,FSH,LH and Prolactin. All where normal but the prolactin was very high,so he prescribed "Bromocriptine 2.5mg" for me,for 3 months. After that I did another test again to check the prolactin level,and it was very low,so I withdrew the medication. Ever since then I use to pass my normal period time,so the doctor gave me primolut N,for two months now I have to take it before I can see my period,and if am on my period he use to give me Clomid,but still there is no progress am not pregnant.





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More Information

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