For many, baldness is a part of the aging process. But for others, it can be a stressful condition. Hair loss affects thousands of men and women around the world. And despite continuing research by scientists, no cure has yet been proven to stop this condition. The most common known baldness for humans is Androgenetic alopecia. This type of loss of hair affects about 50 million men and 30 million women in the US alone.
For men hair, early signs of hair loss start just above the temples, and it recedes over time, forming the M shape. Likewise, others may experience thinning at the crown that progresses to partial or complete baldness. On the other hand, women do not experience the recession of the hairline may not lead to total baldness. Women’s hair becomes thinner all over the head.
Pattern baldness for men is hereditary, and it is also linked to male sex hormones. For some, losing hair can start as early as adolescence due to some genetic condition. This condition affects two-thirds of men aging 35 and about 85 percent of men aging 50 and more. For women, the cause of pattern baldness is still unclear, but most are affected after menopause. Therefore, it indicates that the condition might be associated with a decrease in female hormones.
Androgenetic Alopecia affects a lot of people, and if there will be a permanent cure, the anxiety will be lessened. Likewise, it will also be advantageous for the company that will discover this much-coveted cure.
Understanding Hair Growth and Finding How to Stop Losing Hair
Losing hair due to genetics and male pattern baldness can be hard to stop, but it might help to learn more about hair growth and potential causes of baldness.
As explained by the American researchers, each hair strand has a follicle and a shaft. The follicle is a pocket in the skin that holds each hair in place, while the shaft is the fiber or strand that grows in your scalp. The hair bulb located in the base of the follicle divides cells and grows to produce keratin that makes up the shaft. Surrounding this is the papilla that contains tiny blood vessels that deliver hormones to regulate healthy growth, structure, and nourish hair. And like any cells, hair follicles also have cycles, and it involves shedding of around 50 to 100 strands per day.
Each hair follicle produces hair for up to 6 years. Afterward, it breaks for several months. While it rests, the hair strand will fall out. There are more than 100,000 follicles in the scalp, and each follicle rests at a different month while others produce new hair cells. Thus, hair loss is entirely unnoticeable.
Hair loss becomes noticeable when growth and shedding cycles are disrupted. Similarly, hair follicles can be destroyed and replaced with scar tissues. Researchers and professor now understand that baldness happens because of the miniaturization phenomenon. Clinical studies showed that there are hair follicles appear to be genetically sensitive to the movements of dihydrotestosterone (DHT), which is a hormone that is converted from testosterone and is present in the follicles oil glands.
The DHT hormone clings to the receptors in the hair follicles, shrinks, and makes them smaller. Over time, thinner hair is produced by affected hair follicles, and they grow for a shorter period. And eventually, they will no longer produce hair and leave the area hairless.
How to Prevent Hair Loss With Existing Hair Loss Treatments?
At present, several treatment options can help halt or reverse the cause of pattern baldness cure. Also, most balding cure and treatments available will only help you manage the condition and will not give a permanent solution. The USFDA has only approved two drugs that help in hair loss treatment, and they are Minoxidil and finasteride.
The use of Minoxidil for hair loss management and male pattern baldness was accidentally discovered. It was a widely used treatment for high blood pressure. But one of its side effects was the growth of hair in unexpected places. Thus, minoxidil lotion was developed for topical application to the scalp. It may work by increasing blood flow and nourish the hair follicles. Experts from the American Hair Loss Association and Columbia University agree that this product is relatively effective in fighting hair loss. On the other hand, it does not affect hormonal hair loss and has only temporary benefits. If use is discontinued, you may experience hair loss again
Another accidental treatment for hair loss and baldness is Finasteride. It is a drug for treating enlarged prostate glands, but one of its side effects is the growth of hair in unexpected areas. This drug stops type II 5-alpha-reductase. It is responsible for converting testosterone into DHT, and a reduction of this androgen means the follicles will return to their normal size. This hair loss treatment works for men and is effective only as long as it is used.
Another drug that is found to help in hair loss treatment is the drug for prostatic enlargement. This drug is yet to be approved by the FDA, but some doctors prescribe this off-label to manage male pattern baldness. It works in the same manner as Finasteride, but it can be more productive. It blocks both enzymes that lower DHT and lessens risks of damage to hair follicles. Similarly, this drug has limitations as finasteride. It works only when used continuously, and over time, it becomes less effective.
How to Hair Loss Stop in Men
Although most men are comfortable with thinning hair and embrace the change, others prefer to find treatments and slow down hair loss. Aside from the drugs we’ve mentioned, hair loss experts also shared other tips that men can do to save their headfull of hair potentially.
1. Meditation and Exercise
Stress is one of the critical factors that put hair follicles at rest; thus, they stop producing keratin that becomes hair. Therefore, if you notice more falling hair than usual or you’re having bald patches, evaluate your stress levels. Keep in mind that anxiety may also cause flooding of cortisol and fluctuation of your hormone levels. And if you are genetically predisposed to hair loss, stress and tension can speed up your balding in a month.
On the other hand, effectively managing your stress can help slow down hair loss. Some studies recommend meditation to improve your anxiety levels. More so, exercise is another option if you prefer strenuous activities to handle stress or anxiety. You can opt to meditate for a few minutes each day or hit the gym.
2. Ketoconazole Shampoo
A simple change from your standard shampoo for a one containing ketoconazole can make a huge difference in preventing hair loss. You can buy Nizoral or ask your doctor for a prescription. Although it is marketed as an anti-dandruff shampoo, ketoconazole also works as an effective anti-androgen to prevent the conversion of testosterone to DHT. Use the product by massaging it into your scalp, then wait for two to three minutes before rinsing off.
3. Vitamin D Uptake
Vitamin D deficiency is one of the possible reasons for hair loss. The British Journal of Dermatology, people that are vitamin D deficient as more prone to alopecia areata, an autoimmune condition that leads to hair loss. This essential vitamin helps revive hair follicles and reset its growth phase.
You can consume more vitamin D-rich food items like salmon, tuna, orange juice, milk, and swordfish. On the other hand, avoid exposing your balding head in the sun for vitamin D production. This might lead to more problems like scarring and skin cancers.
4. Corticosteroid Treatment
In some cases, hair loss is due to an inflammation caused by a medical condition. If this is the case, corticosteroid medication can be applied by injecting it into the scalp and reduce inflammation. Treatments can be given to patients two times a month to stimulate follicles for a new lot of hair strands.
5. Diet Changes
For some people, Iron deficiency is another cause of hair fall and hair loss, especially if they are following a plant-based diet. The body better absorbs iron from animal sources such as eggs or shrimp. On the other hand, people who get their Iron from plants such as spinach and lentils need more of it to cover their overall nutritional needs. If this is the case for you, your hair is expected to grow back once iron-levels are back to normal, and it can take a few months to happen.
How to Stop Hair Fall Out and Prevent Baldness in Women
While hair loss and baldness are not as common in women as they are in men, it can still happen. Good news for most women, the cause may be harmless and may be due to how you are styling your hair. Likewise, it is more of a cosmetic concern than genetics. Thus, here are a few tips to combat hair loss and enjoy a large crown of healthy, shiny, and silky hair.
Choose Styles that do not Pull on Your Hairline.
Braids, cornrows, tight ponytails, and other styles that pull on your small hair and hairline can lead to hair loss. It can cause stress when it strongly pulls on the delicate hairs on your hairline. If you need to do a ponytail, make sure to use elastics that do not have metal. Your hair should not get tangled in the elastic and pull on your hair when you put down your ponytail.
Stop Using Tools with High Heat
Heat is detrimental to hair. It can fracture the bonds inside hair strands and make hair brittle and prone to breakage. If you cannot avoid using a curling iron or hair straightener, avoid leaving it on the area for too long and move it every ten seconds. Likewise, if you hear a sizzling sound or you’ve burned your finger, it means that you are already burning your hair. Similarly, allow your hair to dry out naturally as often as you can if you will be using styling tools like a blow dryer, use protective sprays to reduce damage to your hair.
Lookout for Chemicals in Hair Products
Now that you know that heat can be extremely harmful on the hair, the next that you should look into are the products that are used for salon treatments. If you usually go for chemical straightening, bleaching and lightening, your hair shaft can be damaged. It can lead to the weakening of the hair and hair loss. If possible, always stick with your natural style and color if you are experiencing thinning problems or hair loss. If you regularly use chemical-drenched salon treatment, make sure to deep condition your hair for the best results.
Check Your Pantry
Foods rich in vitamins and minerals like zinc, iron, and vitamin B12 may help revive thinning hair strands. Thus, make sure to include plenty of nuts, fish, leafy greens, lean meats, and beans in your daily diet. In case you can’t get all these nutrients from your food, find a good supplement to provide what is lacking in your diet.
Use Products that Promote Growth
Hair loss and thinning hair are significant cosmetic concerns for women. Thus, many companies are making products aimed at reviving and restoring hair follicles. There are hair loss shampoos containing minerals and oils that help destroy bacteria that cause hair loss and breakage, aid growth, and increase blood circulation to the scalp.
Use Topical Medication
Although OTC topical medications like Minoxidil and Finasteride are developed for male pattern baldness, it can also be available in liquid or mousse form for women. It stimulates hair follicles and promotes growth in as short as six month. And while waiting for better six months, you can simultaneously use a hair-thickening spray to coat hair strands and achieve a voluminous looking mane.
Do Some Scalp Massage
A convenient way of including scalp massage with your hair care is to do it while in the shower. After using shampoo in conditioner, massaging your scalp is discovered to improve blood circulation and growth stimulation. Move your fingertips in slow, circular movements all over the scalp to reduce stress and promote regrowth of hair.
Consider Using Essential Oils
The use of essential oils has become widespread as testimonies of their natural benefits are re-discovered. Even with hair loss prevention, essential oils might hold the answer. Try using cypress, rosemary, lavender, and carrot seed for their regenerative, balancing, and soothing properties. They may improve scalp condition and promote growth. Essential oils are increasingly popular in local and online stores. Add a few drops to your scalp during a massage to enhance the effectiveness and unravel the benefits that these oils have to offer.
How to Stop Hair Loss Completely With More Sophisticated Treatments
Apart from those already mentioned, there are also expensive therapies that may help slow down and stop further loss of hair. Scientists discovered that stem cell transplant and hair transplants might stimulate regrowth from follicles, which have become dormant. However, it might not be possible for follicles that are already inactive or have been replaced with scar tissues. Here are other options to consider.
Hair transplant and stem cell transplants are a viable option for those who want to address their loss hair. The process involves the harvesting of hair follicles, including new stem cells from the back portion of the head and planting them in the bald areas. A surgeon will initiate this by removing minuscule skin plugs with few human hair follicles. Around 15% of hair will grow from these follicles and about 15% growth in a lot of four or five strands.
Hair transplant is an expensive option; likewise, patients may also run the risk of infection due to the surgery.
This light and heat treatment is found to help in stimulating growth for both men and women. Low-level laser therapy involves the stimulation of epidermal stem cells in hair follicles. By regular treatment, the stem cell will shift into a regrowth phase cycle after being dormant for a while. For many men and women with male pattern baldness, laser therapy is effective in activating stem cells and gives them significant results in just a month.