Is Hair Loss Genetic?
Are you losing your hair and want to know how much hair you’ll lose? Or perhaps you have a bald relative and you’re wondering if you too are going to be bald? It’s normal to want answers to your hair loss worries, but be careful about your sources of information.
The Genetics of Balding
While we know that hair loss runs in families, the exact role that genetics play is unclear. One of the genes linked to androgenetic alopecia, more commonly known as male/female pattern baldness, is the androgen receptor (AR) gene. The AR gene is located on the X chromosome, the chromosome a male inherits from his mother (males inherit the Y chromosome from their fathers).
Often, pattern hair loss resembles an immediate relative, such as your father or grandfather, who may have passed it on. Sometimes brothers have similar hair loss patterns. So many people believe that male pattern hair loss comes from mom’s side of the family when actually genes associated with hair loss are passed along from both sides of the family.
Identifying Hair Loss
Male pattern baldness, the most common cause of hair loss in men, usually begins at the front of your scalp. It can occur as early as the late teens or early 20s, and usually works backward from your hairline or temples to eventually cause partial or total baldness on the crown. Female pattern baldness affects women differently in that it rarely results in total baldness. It’s typically a general thinning of the hair on the top and sides of the scalp. The receding hairline common in men is usually not seen on women with female pattern hair loss.
If you would like to learn more about the causes of hair loss and available treatment options, schedule a free consultation with a Bosley counselor. We’ll help you determine if your thinning is hereditary and recommend the best solutions for you.