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Options to combat hair loss
There are roughly 80 million men and women in the world suffering from hair loss. Hair loss is caused by a number of different factors. Male pattern baldness is the most common form of hair loss and is estimated to affect 90 percent of men by age 50. That said, pattern baldness (or genetic hair loss) isn’t specific to men; women suffer from female pattern baldness as well.
Why people lose their hair
Male pattern baldness (clinically known as androgenetic alopecia) is the most common reason for hair loss. It’s related to Dihydrotestosterone (DHT), a naturally occurring hormone present in all men. DHT has a detrimental effect on the hair follicles. It slows down hair production and causes new hairs to be shorter and weaker than usual. The hormone can even completely stop hair growth, gradually depleting your stock of hair. There are a number of other reasons why people go bald, including other forms of alopecia, the treatment of terminal illnesses and diet, just to name a few. Surgical hair restoration, like Bosley hair transplantation, is the only permanent solution to male pattern baldness, as it is the only solution that can fully restore one’s lost hair and hairline.
Misconceptions About Hair Loss
By default, men typically blame mom for hair loss, as it was widely understood that hair loss is simply inherited from their mother’s side. This is just one of a number of common hair loss misconceptions:
- Hair loss is inherited from your mother’s father— not true. Baldness is inherited, but from both your mother’s and father’s genes.
- Hair loss slows and eventually stops as you age— not true. Hair loss is a progressive trait that doesn’t stop; in fact, it gets worse with age.
- Hats or helmets can cause hair loss— not true. Wearing something on your head has no effect on hair loss. Although hairpieces and weaves that pull and strain your hair may cause traction alopecia.
- Brushing or massaging the scalp reduces hair loss— There isn’t sufficient evidence to conclude that brushing or massaging the scalp prevents or reduces hair loss.
- Too much sun causes hair loss— not true. Though excessive sun exposure is damaging to your hair, there isn’t evidence to conclude that it causes permanent hair loss.
Hair Loss Treatments
There are various hair loss treatments which have been proven to slow down hair loss, and in some cases even regrow lost hair. Of the non-surgical hair treatments, Propecia and Minoxidil seem to be effective in slowing down hair loss and regrowing hair, in certain cases where the users have a mild to moderate case of baldness. New, alternative methods of laser treatments have also been developed. First, there was the LaserComb, which employs low-level laser light technology to coerce hair follicles to regenerate. The handheld device requires people to spend 20 minutes a day running the comb through their hair. Recently, the technology has been further developed, evolving into a more effective, less intensive treatment. In the new laser treatment, a laser light helmet is used to aim high concentrations of laser light at affected areas of the scalp.
Unfortunately, there is no way to prevent male pattern baldness, since it’s driven by genetics. One can slow down its progression, but not reverse it. So, if you are experiencing significant hair loss, or have male pattern baldness, hair restoration surgery might be your best and only bet in having your lost hair restored.
Over the past century, hair restoration has become one of the most popular cosmetic surgeries among men and women alike.
Hair restoration surgery involves transplanting healthy hair follicles from the donor areas of the head—typically the back and sides—to the bald or thinning areas if the head. These are called grafts. Each graft can contain between 1 to 4 hairs. Because the donor hairs are from areas of the head that are not prone to balding, they are considered permanent when transplanted to balding areas, such as the scalp. The result is a lasting, natural looking head of hair.