Male Hair Loss
Overview of Male Hair Loss
Hair loss is a health problem that almost every man will experience at some point in his life. In fact, two-thirds of men have some sort of hair loss by 35 and by age 50, this number increases to 85%.
There are many different types of hair loss. Involuntional alopecia is a natural condition where the hair follicles gradually thin with age. Hair follicles go into the resting phase and remaining hairs become shorter.
Male pattern baldness is a genetic condition that causes a receding hairline and gradual disappearance of hair follicles. Alopecia universalis causes all body hair to fall out, including eyebrows, eyelashes and even pubic hair.
There are a few causes of hair loss, but the primary cause is an excess amount of DHT, a sex hormone in the body. DHT causes hair follicles to shorten and likewise the growth phase is shortened as well. Eventually, hair stops growing all together and treatment options are needed.
Other causes of hair loss include certain medications (blood pressure, diabetes, cholesterol) that cause hair to start falling out. Some medical conditions cause hair loss by causing a person to literally pull their own hair out. Poor nutrition can cause hair follicles to weaken and eventually fall out. Finally, stress can inhibit oxygen and nutrients from reaching hair follicles, similar to having poor circulation.
For men, there are three simple symptoms of hair loss. First and most commonly, a man might notice he has a receding hair line. Second, thinning hair is a sign that hair follicles are weakened and may begin to fall out. Finally, the last symptom of hair loss is a horseshoe-shaped pattern that leaves the crown of the head exposed.
There are a variety of treatment options available for male hair loss. Rogaine is a common topical medication that is applied to the skin that contains a drug called Minoxidil. However, Rogaine only offers modest growth and does not actually stop the root causes of hair loss. Plus, Rogaine must be administered twice per day and only about half of all users actually see results.
Propecia is a drug that specifically treats male pattern baldness. Propecia works by stopping the body from producing male hormones that cause hair loss. It is only available via prescription and has several side effects. It is available to both men and women, but women who are nursing or pregnant cannot take Propecia due to birth defects and its’ effects on children.
Hair transplants are an expensive treatment option that involves the relocation of skin from areas of the scalp that contain active hair follicles. A person can need several treatments. This type of surgery is incredibly expensive. For most people the price forces them to look for alternative treatment options.
Finally, there are a variety of natural supplements that block the formation of DHT – the primary cause of hair loss. Many natural supplements have actually been clinically tested and have a high success rate. Due to their fairly high success rate and less expensive price, natural hair loss supplements are quickly becoming a popular treatment option.