Treating Hair Loss With Minoxidil
Minoxidil is a topical medication for hair loss. You may know it by the brand name Rogaine, and its an FDA-approved treatment for pattern hair loss.
Studies, like this one, have shown its superior effectiveness in hair regrowth. Researchers also noted that Minoxidil 5% promoted increased hair count and scalp coverage.
Youll find Rogaine in 2% and 5% variants, both of which you can buy over the counter. It works by lengthening the hairs anagen phase. This gives the strands more time to grow to their full length and density.
Minoxidil takes time to produce noticeable results though, so be patient. You may see improvements in your hair after three to four months of use. Also, you need to keep using the product once a day to achieve the best results.
What Can I Do About Traction Alopecia
To protect your hair from traction alopecia and prevent further damage:
- Ask your stylist to create looser braids or dreadlocks.
- If you have braids, remove them after three months.
- If you wear a weave or hair extensions, remove them after eight weeks.
- If you have relaxed or dyed hair, make sure these treatments are applied by a professional. If you still notice breakage or hair shedding, avoid chemical treatments completely.
- Minimize heat styling, including hair dryers, flat irons and curling irons. These wear out the hair and can lead to major hair loss.
Dht Inhibitors For Androgen
Studies have revealed that an androgen called dihydrotestosterone causes pattern baldness. People with pattern hair loss appear to have elevated levels of DHT. And its whats causing their hair loss.
DHT affects the hair follicles by making them smaller. It also alters their growth phases, shortening the anagen phase. With less time to develop, the hair bulbs cant reach complete maturity.
The androgen also leads to a longer resting follicle phase. No new hair strands develop throughout this period.
If its this androgen causing your hair loss, DHT-inhibitors may help you regrow your hair. The most common is Finasteride , also used to treat an enlarged prostate.
These drugs keep DHT from entering hair follicles and affecting the strands growth. Aside from keeping your remaining strands, they also let your follicles grow new hair.
One study looked at oral Finasteride therapy containing oral contraceptives. Of the 37 premenopausal women with pattern hair loss, 62% saw improvements in their hair loss.
In a separate study of Finasteride, the drug improved hair thickness in 81.7% of the participants. The study also looked at Dutasteride, another drug for enlarged prostate. In the Dutasteride group, 83.3% of the women came out with thicker hair.
The researchers note that Dutasteride may be better for women younger than 50. But they also note that combining the drugs can yield better hair thickness results. Furthermore, both drugs have shown to prevent more hair loss in women.
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My Hair Regrowth Story
Get up, immediately think about my hair again but I then performed some simple techniques which I knewwere helping me restore strong, healthy hair growth.
I would then shower , towel dry myhair, flick a comb through it, and that’s it. All done! Id then simply get on with my life, secure in the knowledge that I wasdoing something extremely positive at last, and so didn’t need to givemy hair any more thought.
Basically what Im saying here is that, whilst my hair loss used topester me throughout each and every day, suddenly I found myself livingmy life like I used to before hair loss had first “infected” me. Icould even concentrate better Id be thinking more clearly, whereasbefore, thoughts about hair loss would keep popping up and dwell on mymind.
I know all this must sound pretty pathetic, but it’s just the way itwas!
Even though Id only just started using these techniques, they hadalready changed my mindset from being negative to positive.
So, what are these techniques? Where did they come from?
Here’s what happened…
Get Enough Of These Vitamins And Minerals
There are a lot of vitamin and nutritional supplements on the market that claim to regrow hair or make it thicker or shinier. But theres actually little evidence that vitamins and supplements can help with hair loss with two notable exceptions.
In a 2019 review of studies published in the journal Dermatology and Therapy, researchers said there was insufficient data to recommend many of the vitamins and minerals touted to help with hair growth, including zinc, riboflavin, folic acid, vitamin B12, vitamin E, and biotin .
But, the researchers noted, studies show supplementing your diet with vitamin D or ironif you are deficient in themcan improve symptoms of androgenetic alopecia and telogen effluvium , a temporary condition in which hair loss is caused by shock, stress or trauma.
Vitamin D is naturally produced by the body when the skin is exposed to sunlight. We also get it in food like milk and eggs. But a lot of Americans, pasty people that we tend to be, are vitamin D deficient. If you have thinning hair, you might want to get your vitamin D level checked by a healthcare provider. Its not a magic bullet, but there are other benefits to vitamin D: It may play a role in protection against many forms of cancer .
Iron is a mineral that people get in their diet, in things like red meat or spinach. Iron deficiency is also commoneven more so in women. Being deficient in iron can make you anemic . You can get this level checked by a healthcare provider, too.
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Reduce Dht Within The Body
If DHT is the main trigger for individuals with AGA, then reducing DHT levels within the body is one of the best steps you can take. Read on to find out how to do this.
Our bodies produce DHT when 5-alpha-reductase, an enzyme, combines with testosterone, the male sex hormone. In the absence of 5-alpha-reductase our body is essentially unable to synthesize DHT, except in tiny quantities.
This means that inhibition of 5-alpha-reductase can lower the levels of DHT in the body. Finasteride, the first oral medication that the FDA approved against hair loss, works exactly this way, namely by inhibiting the action of 5-alpha-reductase.
For those who are not inclined to pharmaceutical drugs, there are a number of milder natural supplements that work in a similar way. Herbs such as reishi mushroom and saw palmetto can significantly decrease levels when consumed.
All of these can be easily added to your diet, either in the form of smoothies, with the help of vegetable juicing, or through direct supplementation.
How To Prevent Hair Loss
If youre worried about hair loss, there are plenty of things you can do to help keep your hair healthy.
First, wash your hair regularly. Washing keeps excess oil from building up on your scalp and interfering with hair growth. It also removes environmental contaminants that can make their way into your scalp through sweat and styling products.
Next, apply a gentle conditioner after washing it helps distribute sebum evenly and prevent flaking. A few times a week, exfoliate your scalp by using a mild shampoo or rubbing mineral oil into your dry scalp before showering it removes dead skin cells that can clog pores and irritate follicles. And finally, treat your hair gently.
Use wide-tooth combs instead of metal ones whenever possible, and dont use excessive heat or aggressive brushing techniques like teasingthey can break strands over time.
Treatments like relaxers and perms should be used only for special occasions when necessary because they remove layers of hair permanently.
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Find The Hair Loss Treatment That Is Right For You
If youve noticed hair loss and want to stop it, one of the most effective ways is to block the androgen dihydrotestosterone the hormone that causes hair loss using a combination of finasteride, minoxidil and a hair thickening shampoo.
The most effective hair loss treatments, such as 5-reductase inhibitor finasteride, are designed to stop further hair loss. This means that the earlier you start taking them, the more of your hair youll be able to preserve.
In some cases, drugs like finasteride and minoxidil can cause you to regrow some of your lost hair, although theres no guarantee that this will happen.
Our guide to DHT and hair loss explains more about how hair loss treatments like finasteride work, and the potential effects you can expect from starting the treatment.
If you are worried about whether or not you can grow your hair back, a hair transplant may be the option for you.
You can also complete an online consultation with our healthcare providers to learn more about whats causing your hair loss and how you can encourage hair growth.
Understand What Causes Balding
In order to properly treat balding, it is important to understand why you are losing hair in the first place.
While the most common cause of hair loss is male pattern baldness, there are other potential conditions to make note of when considering why your hair falls out. Some of these include:
Thyroid conditions: Severe thyroid disorders like Hashimotos Disease can cause hair loss. However, if this is the cause, you will likely experience other symptoms, like fatigue or weight gain.
Malnutrition. Severe malnutrition, especially in protein, can result in hair changes. However, this cause is unlikely without extremely low intake of calories and protein.
Alopecia areata. This condition causes hair loss in small, typically unnoticeable patches. Alopecia areata occurs when the immune system attacks hair follicles
Telogen effluvium. This is a temporary type of hair loss often caused by very stressful, anxiety inducing or traumatic events, hospitalization, or even certain side effects of medication. It can be confused with permanent hair loss, but it is reversible.
Tinea capitis. This condition is a fungal infection on the scalp that causes small, scaly spots and pustules on the scalp. Tinea capitis, if left untreated, can lead to hair loss from permanent scarring.
Other Causes Of Hair Loss
Excessive styling with harsh products
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Acupuncture For Patchy Hair Loss
If your hair loss is due to alopecia areata, acupuncture may help. This type of hair loss occurs when the immune system mistakes the hair follicles as a foreign body. So, it attacks the follicles, which causes the hair loss to occur in small patches.
A study found that acupuncture may be better than drugs in treating this type of hair loss. Researchers think its because the treatment boosts blood flow and circulation. These improvements may then stimulate the hair follicles to stop shedding strands.
From there, you can proceed to using other proven hair treatments for women to regrow your hair.
How Is Hereditary Hair Loss Treated
Losing your hair slowly is a normal part of the ageing process for most men and some women. Treatment is not usually necessary. However, hair loss that occurs rapidly or early in life can be distressing. If you wish to slow or stop the progression of hair loss, there are treatments available.
Treatments for hair loss include:
- medicines, both local and oral
- wigs, hairpieces or hair transplantation.
Hair loss that is caused by a temporary situation such as illness, medication, stress or insufficient iron will stop when the cause is resolved. Read more about abnormal hair loss.
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Is Prp Effective For Hair Loss
As with any novel procedure, we are in the process of collecting long-term data to understand the possibilities of new and sustained hair regrowth with PRP. Today, some patients have PRP injection in conjunction with other hair loss treatments, such as medication.
Increasing clinical evidence suggests PRP can help patients with hair loss. Most PRP studies report following up with patients for up to six months after their procedure. After that point, we have limited data, but ongoing research can tell us which patients benefit most from PRP, which dont, and why.
That said, patients who work with the board-certified team at the UT Southwestern Department of Plastic Surgery have reported feeling satisfied with their results. As we discover more about this exciting new procedure, we hope to help patients with hair loss achieve their goals with a treatment plan that includes PRP.
To visit with a plastic surgeon about PRP for hair loss, call or request an appointment online.
Who Should Use Prp Treatment
PRP treatment has proven to be effective for both female and male patients. Additionally, the following two groups have been observed as the ones getting the best results from the treatment:
- Those suffering from androgenic alopecia, a condition also known as male/female pattern baldness.
- Those suffering from more recent hair loss. This is because the longer your condition persists, the less effective the treatment will be, though it may still produce some beneficial results.
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Important Safety Information For Finasteride
Finasteride is for use by MEN ONLY and should NOT be used by women or children.
Read this Patient Information before you start taking finasteride and each time you get a refill. There may be new information. This information does not take the place of talking with your healthcare provider about your medical condition or treatment.
What is finasteride? Finasteride is a prescription medicine used for the treatment of male pattern hair loss . It is not known if finasteride works for a receding hairline on either side of and above your forehead . Finasteride is not for use by women and children.
Can Hair Loss Be Cured Or Reversed
There is no cure for hair loss. Some hair loss is temporary and the hair will grow back. For those experiencing male pattern baldness, treatments like Finasteride and Propecia can help halt hair loss and in some cases stimulate regrowth. However its worth bearing in mind, as soon as you stop treatment the hair loss will begin again.
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When Hair May Regrow On Its Own
Yes, your hair may regrow on its own. This can happen if you recently:
Had a baby
Recovered from a major illness or had surgery
Underwent cancer treatment
Lost 20 pounds or more
Developed a mild case of a disease called alopecia areata, which causes your immune system to attack your hair follicles
Got rid of psoriasis on your scalp
Your dermatologist can tell you whether your hair may start to grow again on its own.
Sometimes to see regrowth, you need to make some changes.