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What Stage is Your Hair Loss?
Hair Loss In Men
The most common form of hair loss, Androgenetic Alopecia (also known as male pattern baldness) occurs in more than 90% of hair loss cases. Androgenetic Alopecia is most commonly linked to heredity and hormonal indicators. In this form of hair loss, the hair follicles are genetically oversensitive to dihydrotestosterone or DHT (which is produced by the male hormone testosterone), causing hair follicles to shrink over time, resulting in thinning and ultimately balding/ total loss. Unfortunately, this type of hair loss cannot be prevented. It can only be slowed down some.
Aside from hereditary hair loss, there are other non-genetic hair loss factors, including: medications, stress, and nutritional deficiencies.
The term “Male Pattern Baldness” is derived from the shape or pattern this baldness takes. Generally, it first appears as loss along the hairline, resulting in an “M” shape. Gradually, mid-crown hair becomes shorter and finer until a bald patch appears. The emergence of this pattern can help diagnose a patient’s type of hair loss, along with an assessment of the individual’s family medical history. In instances where hair loss does not conform to this pattern, for example, hair loss that occurs suddenly (either in patches or all at once), hair that is brittle, breaks easily, or hair loss that is coupled with scaling, pain, or redness, it may be caused by other conditions than male pattern baldness.
Male Baldness: The Norwood Scale
- Class 1 represents a normal head of hair with no visible hair loss.
- Class 2 is characterized by the beginning of a receding hairline and a “widow’s peak” on the forehead.
- Class 3 patients exhibit a more significant decline in hair above the temples as well as receding from the forehead. In Class 3, hair loss is starting to become significant on the crown.
- Class 4 hair loss may become more noticeable on the crown or patients may have significant hair loss above the temples and/or front anterior areas.
- Class 5 hair loss approaches significant levels with most hair loss occurring on the top of the vertex and crown.
- Class 6 patients show major hair loss.
- Class 7 patients show the most significant hair loss.
Hair Loss in Women
In women, the root causes of hair loss are more varied. To date, there are believed to be approximately 30 distinct medical conditions that can lead to female hair loss, such as: thyroid disorders, childbirth, and certain prescriptions (e.g., birth control pills, medications for high blood pressure, arthritis, heart disease, and depression). Lifestyle choices and changes, e.g., crash dieting, tight hairstyles, and stress, can also precipitate hair loss. Consequently, women are advised to consult a physician who can recommend appropriate testing for thyroid problems and hormone imbalances.
Women make up 40% of all hair loss instances. At present, female pattern baldness (which is different than those caused by temporary hormonal disrupters, such as those previously mentioned) affects roughly 30 million women in the U.S. Heredity, age, and hormones (specifically, the hormonal changes that occur at menopause) are believed to be the principal factors. While few will develop the M shape that accompanies a receding hairline, most will experience thinning all over, widening of their center part, and/or baldness at the crown. (Source: http://www.webmd.com/skin-problems-and-treatments/hair-loss/ss/slideshow-womens-hair-loss)
Female Baldness: The Ludwig Scale
- Type 1 female baldness is the least severe with thinning on the top of the head.
- Type 2 hair losses in women are more significant with areas of the scalp showing through thinning hair.
- Type 3 patients may completely lose hair on the crown of the head.
No matter what stage of hair loss you are in, Bosley has the surgical and non-surgical hair restoration solutions available for you. Bosley offers a free information kit that will provide you with the necessary information about what hair restoration solutions are available to you, and help you make an informed decision on the next step in treating your hair loss.
If you are ready to take the next step in discussing your hair loss, schedule a free private consultation at any of Bosley’s 70 convenient locations. During your consultation, learn why men and women lose hair, receive a free microscopic hair and scalp analysis, identify your hair loss classification, and most importantly, find out what your options are for getting your hair back.