We’ll Tell You Why and What You Can Do About It!
We know that almost all of men’s hair loss stems from male pattern baldness. However, much else isn’t known about the common affliction. Male pattern baldness is genetic. In essence, if a male’s father or grandfather lost their hair, it’s likely that male will also experience hair loss. Hair loss that isn’t genetic may actually reverse itself.
Other factors may lead to male hair loss. Certain medications, too much Vitamin A, and not getting enough protein in the diet are all possible factors in male baldness. Even illness and stress can result in hair loss. Smoking cigarettes can lead to a rapid acceleration in hair loss. Hair loss, known as alopecia in the medical community, isn’t necessarily indicative of medical issues. However, deciding to treat hair loss may result in a complete physical being ordered by your doctor to firmly rule out any medical issues. It may also help inform the patient of gaps in nutrition or deficiencies in certain blood levels which will signal changes that should be made.
It’s important to note that no medicine can actually cut back male pattern baldness. However, there are medications that may slow down the hair loss. One such medication is Minoxidil. It is FDA approved. It’s an over-the-counter topical cream that is applied to the scalp. Once this treatment has begun, it must be continued or hair loss will resume. There are side effects associated with Minoxidil. The most common side effect is a dry, red scalp. Scalp irritation may also occur. It is also used to treat blood pressure, so it may potentially affect blood pressure and heart function.
Finasteride is also often used to treat hair loss. It is the active ingredient in Propecia and has been on the market for several years. One pill a day stops further hair loss in 95% of men. It also stimulates partial regrowth in two-thirds of the men who use it. Results can be seen in as little as six months, but may take as long as two years. Side effects of Finasteride are generally mild and uncommon. Erectile dysfunction and decreased libido are sometimes reported.
Spironolactone has also been widely used in Australia for decades. Although it was initially developed to treat high blood pressure and fluid retention, it has been shown to have success with hair regrowth. It is generally prescribed to women, as it blocks the effects of androgen hormones.
Another treatment used by men to treat hair loss is hair transplantation surgery. Widely recognized for it’s sporadic results, it might not be the ideal treatment for some. This treatment became popular during the 1950’s. In most cases, the results are completely natural looking. There are two types of hair loss that respond well to this surgery. Hair loss from accidents or operations and hair loss resulting from androgenetic causes. This process may take several sessions before desired results are achieved and has many potential side effects. Some of these side effects include bleeding at follicle transfer site, infection, and scarring. It is highly recommended that you completely understand the process of transplantation before making a decision on this. This is a treatment that may be quite painful and isn’t the right choice for many. Talk to your doctor about treatment options.
There are several unproven treatments for male hair loss. Platelet-rich plasma injections are a relatively new treatment. There are several supplements on the market claiming to regrow hair. Acupuncture is sometimes also used, as is scalp massage and laser treatments. None of these options have scientific evidence or studies to back them up. However, any one suffering from hair loss should speak to their doctor and choose a treatment plan best for their circumstances.
What research shows
Studies show that male pattern baldness is far more common in Caucasian and Australian Aboriginal backgrounds than African or Asian backgrounds. Due to the genetic aspect, it seems that male pattern baldness has been passed generation through generation. Hair loss may be embarrassing, but it doesn’t have to be left untreated. If you feel like you’re losing your hair, speak to your doctor. Start developing a treatment plan that you’re comfortable with. Whether it’s nutritional supplements or a topical cream, there is an option that’s right for your situation. Research your possibilities and start changing your future.
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