What are hairy arms?
Whether from genetics or hormones many people have hairy forearms and upper arms. This can be especially distressing for women who are embarrassed by hairy arms. Many women struggle with wearing short-sleeve fashions in the heat and even bracelets can be uncomfortable.
Possible causes of excess hair growth:
- Medications. Some medications can cause increased hair growth, including medications containing cortisol and some birth control.
- Congenital adrenal hyperplasia. This inherited condition results in increased production of cortisol and testosterone by your adrenal glands.
- Cushing’s syndrome. Cushing’s syndrome is a condition that occurs when your body is exposed to high levels of cortisol, a hormone the body produces primarily in response to stress. Cortisol is also present in some medications and can disrupt the balance of hormones in the body, which can result in hirsutism.
- Polycystic ovaries. Ovarian cysts are very common condition and can cause weight gain, irregular periods, and hair growth.
- Tumors. Hirsutism can be caused by androgen-secreting tumors in the ovaries or adrenal glands, though this is one of the more rare causes.
What can be done?
- An appointment with your doctor will eliminate any possible health issues that may be causing hairy arms.
- Shaving produces short term results with risk of folliculitis and bumps.
- Waxing is painful and short term.
- Laser hair removal is useful for hair that has pigment, e.g. black or brown. Blonde or red hair has difficulty with laser hair removal. Radiofrequency treatment added to the laser hair removal, e.g. elos system, or e-Laser, may help more than regular laser hair removal.