Male Pattern Baldness in severe cases can manifest in advanced hair loss. Leaving only a thin band of hair around the sides and back. Known as a “horseshoe”.
Male pattern baldness is a result of a gene in the body that converts testosterone into DHT (dihydrotestosterone). The DHT is thought to latch on to the hair follicles that carry the male pattern baldness gene. As a result, hair loss is triggered.
The hair follicle enters stages throughout the lifespan of the hair. Anagen is the growth phase of hair and it lasts about two to three years. Telogen is the resting phase of hair growth and it lasts only three to four months. During the growth phase, your hair can grow up a few centimeters per month. At the end of the resting phase. The hair strands in this pattern fall out. Then the new hair enters the growth phase. With the average person shedding from 50 to 100 hairs each day.
Hair loss is progressive. Although can be slow once it starts it will generally continue. Normally following the genetic patterning within the family. Occurs to some extent in 60-70% of all men.
Hereditary hair loss stages are categorised in a useful guide. It helps to diagnose the extent of the hair loss. For both men and women. The Norwood Scale is a classification of MPB for men. Starting from remedial thinning to progressive hair loss. This makes it easier to understand the present grouping and determine the potential future loss. The Scale starts at 1 at its most minor up to 7 as the most aggressive form of hair loss. Also staging the loss between hairline and crown. This is a useful guide even if not totally depicting your hair loss stage.
Besides the genetic forms of hair loss that makeup around 90% of hair loss conditions. There are more examples of how hair loss can occur. Some reversible conditions. Such examples of other types of hair loss may include but are not limited to stress, iron deficiency, thyroid disease, traction alopecia, trauma, and medication. It is important before any treatment is administered a proper assessment is performed.
What´s The Next Step To Tackling Male Pattern Baldness
Aspects such as age, current hair loss pattern, family hair loss history, general health and hair characteristics. Will all be factors in deciding what the next step should be in treating your hair loss.
A hair transplant and hair loss medications can complement each other in providing the best result. Maintaining your existing hair can also reduce the need for a hair transplant later. Especially if your hair growth can be stabilised.
CHOOSING A HAIR LOSS TREATMENT
With the three FDA approved treatments for hair loss. They can be used individually or combined as they look to treat hair loss from different angles.
Minoxidil stimulates the hair follicles’ active growth (the anagen phase). Causing the hairs to thicken and grow longer. Minoxidil is helpful in slowing down the rate of hair loss in approximately 70%-75% of patients. And about one in two patients actually experiences hair re-growth.
Finasteride works by inhibiting type 2 5-alpha-reductase (the enzyme that produces DHT from testosterone). Therefore, by reducing DHT production. Finasteride can prevent and eventually reverse the process of hair loss. Because of its mode of action, finasteride is not recommended for use by women.
Low-level laser therapy, or LLLT, emits a light source through diodes that are absorbed through the skin. This encourages improved cell reproduction. As well as blood, and oxygen circulation. Can result in not just helping to stabilise hair loss but improve hair growth from dormant, sleeping hair follicles to give a fuller stronger head of hair.
Although FDA approved no treatment or therapy is a cure. Results can vary from person to person. Medications can carry adverse side-effects and always consult a specialist before using.
If you suffer from hair loss and want to try non-surgical hair restoration treatments. First make sure the treatments have been proven to give a benefit to the majority of people tested. If you wish to use a more “herbal” approach. Always ensure there could be no lasting contraindications to your health.
A doctor with your best interests at heart will recommend the use of medications to almost all hair transplant candidates. The use of effective medications can sustain the growth of the native hair. Compliment the quality of the hair transplant. Even reduce the number of grafts or surgical sessions one may require.
When Your Hair Needs More Than Just Treatment
A hair transplant may not be a cure for male pattern baldness. But with a well thought out planning it can restore hairlines and air coverage. With a natural looking hair density even on advanced hair loss stages.
A hair transplant works because our hair around the sides and back of our head is genetically strong (donor hair). We can remove some of this hair. To replace lost hair over the top of the scalp (recipient area).
There are two techniques, FUT and FUE. They differ in how the hair is removed or harvested. The rest of the procedure is the same. Follicular Unit Transplant (FUT) is a one-day procedure. A thin strip is taken from around the back and sides of your head and sutured. The hair is divided into the natural units and then placed over the area of hair loss. Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE) the donor is shaved. The with a micro tool punches each group of hairs one by one.
Performed under local-anesthetic. It is a day or at most, a two-day procedure. Then home with no hospital overnight stay required.
Hair Transplant Candidates
Aspects such as age, current hair loss pattern, family hair loss history. General health and hair characteristics will all be factors in a person´s suitability for a hair transplant. Also, whether they are a good or poor hair transplant candidate.
A hair transplant takes time to fully grow and mature. After the initial healing the hair starts to enter the natural growth cycles. The transplanted hair will generally have fallen out by around thirty days after your procedure.
The hair begins to regrow three months later and over the following months more grows and matures. It is common for the hair to change in colour and texture as it matures and although the majority of hair growth is achieved at twelve months a full result can take eighteen months.