ZocdocAnswersWhy is my body hair becoming thicker?

Question

Why is my body hair becoming thicker?

I'm a 24 year old female and the hair on my body is getting thicker. The hair on my arms and legs and even on my face when it shows up looks thicker and like there is more of it than they're used to be. What would make my hair start growing so funny? Do I have a hormone problem?

Answer

I would definitely mention this problem to either your primary care doctor or your OB GYN doctor the next time you see them. An increase in the density or thickness of hair on the body in a female does often come from a hormonal or other underlying medical problem that may need treatment, although not always. When you go to see your doctor, make sure to give a good and detailed history of your menstrual cycles, as changes in the hair that result from hormonal imbalance will also often give a change in the menstrual pattern. For example if your periods are becoming more irregular, or if you are skipping periods suddenly, those are important clues to what might be going on. One of the conditions that can cause changes in the hair as well as menstrual irregularities is an imbalance in the thyroid gland, something that can be easily diagnosed with simple blood tests. Another medical condition which is even more common in women is something called polycystic ovarian syndrome, which often results in hirsutism (thickening "male" pattern hair) and menstrual problems. Your doctor will be able to perform a thorough examination and help you decide if additional workup is needed!

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or (in the United States) 911 immediately. Always seek the advice of your doctor before starting or changing treatment. Medical professionals who provide responses to health-related questions are intended third party beneficiaries with certain rights under Zocdoc’s Terms of Service.