To help raise awareness during Alopecia Awareness Month, women are sharing inspiring Instagram posts chronicling their hair loss journies.

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"Alopecia is simply a medical term to describe hair loss," Greenwich, CT, dermatologist Kim Nichols , MD says. She explains that it can be caused by anything from the environment to genetics. "Androgenetic Alopecia [AGA] involves hormones in the body which can lead to increased hormone activity causing the hair loss," Nichols says. "AGA can be inherited or may come from another underlying condition." Although typically risk rises with age, there are still cases where it starts much younger.

Brittany Myers was diagnosed with alopecia when she was just seven. “Throughout my childhood and into early adulthood, I would only have a missing patch of hair here or there—sometimes more and sometimes less,” she told Yahoo Beauty . “When things were good, I didn’t think about it much. When things were bad, I worried a lot about one day losing all my hair.”

She overcame her fear of becoming bald when she was 26 and worked with a stylist friend to reinvent her look to help gain comfort and confidence. “Back then, I never imagined it wouldn’t grow back, but I’ve been bald ever since.”

She is among the many women sharing their stories of alopecia . Through these Instagram posts, women are not just bringing forth an awareness of this condition, but they’re also providing a sense of community. “It helped me begin to see the complex beauty in the baldness , in the challenge of it all,” says Myers. “And finding that comfort over time helped me to shift focus away from alopecia and baldness.”

Keep scrolling to see just some of the empowering and beautiful messages.