Body shaming is something that a lot of females throughout the world suffer. They are shamed for their physical appearance. The world decides to be the judge and jury for the determined size, colour, shape and beauty standards for the female gender.
One such beauty standard that is predominant is the hairless, perfectly smooth skin that all women are mandated to have. To maintain these high standards set by the society, women do all that they can to flaunt a perfectly no hair skin. Waxing, threading, shaving and what not? What we fail to understand is that we are discriminating against women in general. Not only that, we are also hurting the women suffering from Hirsutism more and more.
Now, what is Hirsutism? Read more to find out.
So, you may think: What is Hirsutism? Hirsutism is a medical condition of excessive unwanted hair growth in regions like face, chest, stomach and back for a lot of people, especially women. Statistics have shown that this condition is prevalent amongst a lot of young women between the ages of 20-30. And 5% of women in the USA suffer from the same.
There are two major causes for Hirsutism. Sometimes, it is seen that Hirsutism is hereditary and is passed on if it is predominantly prevalent in the previous generations. The other cause might be hormonal imbalances. Many times hirsutism is caused due to excessive levels of androgen (male hormones).
Androgen is present in females, but at very low levels, thus not affecting the hair growth level in women. But, when the level of androgen is high, it can cause a deep voice and hair growth in unwanted regions. Another reason might be Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS), which causes small cysts, or fluid-filled sacs in the ovary.
Treatment for this condition includes intake of drugs.These drugs reduce the amount of androgen in the body, remove a cyst in the uterus that spurs hair growth.
But, these drugs have after effects that can backfire and harm the body in different other ways.
The one harsh, yet solid solution that these women have is to accept this condition. They have to learn to live with it. Some women have already become strong and have started accepting this. However, the society has done nothing to support and encourage them. Not only do they not support them, but the constant discrimination also exacerbates the current situation. But there are strong women fighting against this as well.
One such strong woman, who has accepted Hirsutism, is Harnaam Kaur.
Harnaam Kaur hit the headlines when she revealed the fact that she has been growing a beard since the age of 16.
Harnaam suffers from Hirsutism – a side effect of PCOS. She claims that the beginning of beard started at the age of 11. At that age, people don’t even know what is Hirsutism! She has faced bullying at school, taunts from everyone from the society and discrimination for not having the ‘set standards’ that women should have. This went to such extremes that she had suicidal thoughts at one point in her life. She tried everything that she could. This included bleaching, waxing, threading and shaving. But nothing worked.
Finally, after she baptized herself as a Sikh. She stopped all this and started accepting her beard. She has also been selected for #Project60. #Project60 aims at increasing skin cancer awareness by encouraging people to grow facial hair during the winter season. Harnaam feels proud to be the only woman amongst all the men. She talks about how it makes her feel strong and special.
This is the kind of outlook that the society must accept. And this is the kind of inspiration that will have a positive effect on all the other women out there who are being shamed for the hair or medical condition that they did not ask for.
So readers, now you know what is Hirsutism. Spread the word and help in making our society a place inhabited by a lot more broad-minded people. People who learn to not judge a book by its cover!