Causes Of Thinning Hair
Its not entirely clear what causes thinning hair in men.
We do know that male pattern baldness has something to do with androgens. These are hormones responsible for controlling bodily processes that happen during and after puberty, including hair growth.
Testosterone is the most well-known androgen. An androgen called DHT is most involved in hair growth. High levels of T and DHT may influence the speed of your hair cycle, which can lead to thinning hair.
First, heres a quick refresher on hair growth:
- Your hair grows out of little capsules in your skin called follicles.
- Each follicle supports the growth of a single hair by a little under half an inch per month for about 2 to 6 years this is called the anagen phase.
- The follicle eventually shrivels up and cuts the hair off from the blood supply underneath, pushing the hair out permanently this is called the catagen phase.
- The follicle spends a few months resting and eventually generates a brand-new hair this is called the telogen phase.
- The process restarts back at the anagen phase and goes through the same phases again.
- These phases go on for many years until a follicle eventually cant produce any more hairs.
Its believed that the androgen receptor gene may increase T and DHT levels and speed up this cycle.
But a 2017 study found that at least 200 other possible genes may contribute to your chance of male pattern baldness.
Some environmental and lifestyle factors can also affect hair loss, including:
Check Medications With Your Doctor
Some medicines for conditions like heart disease or those used to lower lipids can affect your hair. Talk to your doctor about if any of the medications you take interfere with hair growth or loss, and ask for advice on how to help counteract negative effects. Some of these medicines can cause shedding of finer fibers, Dr. Bergfeld says. Also, when women stop hormone replacement medication, they should expect a fair amount of hair loss.
Theres no one who has the hair at 60 or 70 that they had at 15, Dr. Bergfeld says. Thats why its important to take care of your hair as you age.
Can Hair Loss Be Reversed
Yes and no. It depends on what type of hair loss youre experiencing.
Some types, like cicatricial alopecia, are permanent, while others that may be caused by stress or a medical condition are temporary. Once the cause has been identified and eliminated, your hair should start growing back.
Generally speaking, if the trigger goes away or whatever caused the injury to the hair follicle, then the hair will recover over a period of four to six months to a year, says Dr. Bergfeld.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Male Pattern Baldness
Male pattern baldness usually starts after puberty and develops gradually.
You may notice your hair gradually thinning at your temples and your hairline slowly receding. The hair on your crown may also get thinner and you may eventually develop a bald patch on the top of your head, which gets bigger over time. If hair loss continues, you may develop a horseshoe pattern of hair growth around the back and sides of your head.
Male pattern baldness doesnt usually cause your eyebrows, eyelashes or the hair at the sides and back of your hair to fall out. Hair loss in these areas is usually caused by other medical conditions. If you arent sure, or youre concerned about hair loss, see your doctor for information and advice.
Growing New Hair Follicles In A Dish
In a second study, aimed at using stem cells for hair growth, the Columbia researchers have created a way to grow human hair in a dish, which could open up hair restoration surgery to more people, including women, and improve the way pharmaceutical companies search for new hair growth drugs.
It is the first time that human hair follicles have been entirely generated in a dish, without the need for implantation into skin.
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Burning Or Stinging On The Scalp
Some people who have alopecia areata may experience a burning or stinging sensation in their scalp before hair loss occurs.
If these signs occur, you may have an infection on your scalp. It is important to treat the infection as soon as possible to prevent it from spreading, as well as further hair loss. An untreated infection on the scalp can lead to skin abscesses , pus, extreme pain, and baldness.
Do Hair Transplants Help Hair Loss
Hair transplants involve taking hair from one area of the scalp and transplanting it into an area thats thin or bald.
Transplants may be successful for some people depending on the cause of hair loss. But youll need enough hair to donate to the transplant, and youll need to wait several months for it to grow.
You can expect of transplanted hair to grow back in 3 to 4 months. Talk with a dermatologist or hair restoration specialist to see if a hair transplant is right for you.
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Does Smoking Cause Hair Loss
Its widely known that smoking causes serious health problems, but it can also contribute to hair loss.
Smoking damages the hair follicle and reduces healthy blood flow. A 2020 study found that 425 out of 500 smokers had some degree of hair loss, compared to only 200 of 500 nonsmokers.
The authors suggested that nicotine and other chemicals could accelerate hair loss, but more research is needed to confirm.
Smoking also increases free radical production. These molecules react with others and can harm cellular DNA, which is known as oxidative stress. A
Pills To Prevent Hair Loss
Finasteride blocks the enzyme that converts testosterone to dihydrotestosterone , a hormone considered the major culprit in male pattern baldness. DHT thins the hair of men who have inherited a baldness gene because it shrinks genetically sensitive hair follicles until those follicles can no longer grow hair. Finasteride slows hair loss in as many as 90% of men, and most men who take it regrow some hair.
You can use minoxidil and finasteride together, often for better results. Whether you use one or both, Penstein says, you must stick to that treatment.
Youre not curing the problem. Youre just keeping it at bay, and that takes commitment, Penstein says. The moment you stop, you start losing hair again, sometimes faster than before. Learn more about what you can do to help prevent a receding hairline.
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Early Signs Of Balding: What Are They
There are several different signs that you might be starting to experience hair loss . Signs of balding include:
thinning hair all over your head
a receding hairline
hair that is slow to grow
more hairs on your brush or pillow than normal
Recognizing the signs of male pattern baldness is an important part of the treatment or prevention process.
Because male pattern baldness occurs in stages, it may be possible to recognize the signs early enough to reverse hair loss or prevent any further damage to your hairline. The stages of balding are relatively universal, so learning how to recognize them is crucial.
Below, weve listed three warning signs that you should be aware of, as well as simple but effective ways that you can take action to prevent your hair loss from getting worse.
Q: Is Vitamin D Good For Hair Growth
A: Vitamin D is one of the best vitamins for hair growth. It may assist in building new hair follicles, which can promote new growth. In addition, theres evidence that a deficiency in Vitamin D can lead to greater shedding .
According to Sapna Palep, M.D., founder of Spring Street Dermatology in New York City, Vitamin D is the number one vitamin thats not respected enough as a serious cause of hair not growing back .
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How To Protect Manage And Treat Thinning Hair:
You likely dont need to wash your hair every day. In fact, Samantha DelaFuente, a stylist at Marie Robinson Salons in New York and Miami, tells SELF that she recommends washing only two or three times a week. Dont be afraid of dirty hair, she says.
And dermatologists agree: Washing too often strips your hair of necessary oils, and washing infrequently can leave hair dull and limp, especially if you overuse dry shampoo, Dr. Bridges says. If you have natural hair, which tends to be drier and more prone to breakage, clean it even less frequently, Dr. Khetarpal says.
Moisturizing shampoos formulated without sulfateschemicals in shampoos that help clean but can also be drying on sensitive or dry scalpsare a safe bet for everyone. In particular, celebrity stylist Tym Wallace tells SELF he recommends Oribe Gold Lust Repair & Restore Shampoo .
Conditioner gives your hair shine and reduces static electricity, the AAD explains, which is why it improves the look and feel of dull or damaged hair. Apply to the ends of the hair and work your way up, DelaFuente says. A little goes a long way the more conditioner you use, the flatter your hair will be.
Remove tangles with a wide-tooth comb and rinse with cool water, which closes the cuticle and makes the hair shiny, Dr. Bridges explains.
After shampooing and conditioning, try using a leave-in product, like a conditioner or detangler, which will boost moisture and provide heat protection before styling.
Maa And Disease Associations
Cotton et al. first suggested idea that male pattern baldness may be a risk factor for cardiovascular disease . This has been subsequently supported by several other studies . A recent study found that asymptomatic young men with at least Grade 3 vertex baldness have a significantly greater risk of arterial stiffness than those with normal hair status. However, most of these studies were conducted by non-dermatologists and no dermatologic input was included for confirmation of MAA diagnoses. These statistically-significant, though weak, associations were discovered in epidemiological, cohort and case control studies. Severe early onset of MAA in subjects before age 30 may be associated with a higher risk for ischemic heart disease. In a retrospective study of 22,071 American subjects, men experiencing vertex balding were shown to have an increased incidence of myocardial infarction compared with frontal alopecia . One study showed that frontal male pattern baldness in young men was associated with increased serum cholesterol levels and higher blood pressure compared to men of similar age with no hair loss . Increased incidences of hypertension and elevated aldosterone levels have also been found in women with female pattern hair loss .
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Figure 4progressive Miniaturization Of Hair In Each Cycle
A greater than tenfold reduction in overall cell numbers is likely to account for the decrease in hair follicular size . The mechanism by which this decrease occurs is unexplained, and may be the result of either apoptotic cell death, decreased proliferation of keratinocytes , cell displacement with loss of cellular adhesion leading to dermal papilla fibroblasts dropping off into the dermis, or migration of dermal papilla cells into the dermal sheath associated with the outer root sheath of the hair follicle . In vitro studies demonstrate that human balding dermal papilla cells secrete inhibitory factors, which affect the growth of both human and rodent dermal papilla cells, and factors that delay the onset of anagen in mice in vivo. These inhibitory factor probably cause the formation of smaller dermal papillae and smaller hairs in MAA . Insulin-like growth factor binding protein 3 has a demonstrated antagonistic effect on keratinocyte proliferation in the hair follicle in transgenic mice studies .
In addition to the hair follicle miniaturization that leads to thin fibres in androgenetic alopecia, a reduction in anagen duration leads to shorter hair length, while an increase in telogen duration delays regeneration. This results in hairs so short and fine that they fail to achieve sufficient length to reach the surface of the scalp.
Prescription Medications And Treatments
Here are some medications for hair thinning and loss that your doctor may be able to prescribe:
- Finasteride : This is an oral medication that helps reduce levels of the hormone dihydrotestosterone that can cause hair loss.
- Corticosteroids: These are oral or injected medications that can reduce inflammation that may lead to hair loss.
- Laser therapy: Your doctor or a dermatologist may be able to treat hair follicles with laser technology that sends light particles called photons into your follicles to help them grow. Talk to your doctor first to see if this will help you.
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Get A Professional Hair And Scalp Analysis
Sometimes, it can be difficult to determine why your hair is falling out and therefore, how to treat or prevent hair loss. In addition to reviewing your medical history and asking about lifestyle factors that may be affecting the health of your hair, a dermatologist can perform a professional hair and scalp analysis to help determine the cause of your hair loss. Your dermatologist will carefully study your hair and scalp and may take a sample of your hair or a scalp biopsy to gather more information.
Limit Brushing For Healthy Hair
Dermatologists say that vigorous grooming of your hair such as following the old recommendation to brush it 100 strokes every night can damage your hair and cause it to break off. If you excessively brush your hair and it appears thin or shaggy, try limiting how much you brush your hair. Often, the best way to improve the health of your hair is to leave it alone as much as possible.
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Ways To Reduce Hair Loss That Leads To Baldness
Hair loss is a huge concern among both males and females. Although genetics and aging are the most important factors many other reasons could cause hair loss. Balding prevention is possible in most cases and can be slowed down in others.
Treatment of hair loss works best when you know the reason behind your hair loss. Like post-pregnancy hair loss, genetic hair loss, or lack of proper nutrients in your body. If you dont know the reason, then consult your dermatologist to be sure that theres nothing suspicious.
If you have consulted a doctor already, or you think that its not that bad yet, then these prevention tips might help you. We will guide you with some home remedies and other important things you should know to do when facing hair loss. If you follow them regularly and properly, you will see a noticeable change in a few months. Lets take a look at 12 ways to prevent balding:
Figure 3normal Hair Cycle
Hair cycle in mammals has an intrinsic rhythmic behaviour and this is modified by systemic and local factors. Humans have an asynchronous hair cycle and the duration of anagen and the final length of hair differ between regions of the body. A number of molecular signals including growth factors, nuclear receptors, cytokines and intracellular signalling pathways are involved in controlling the hair cycle. Growth factors such as IGF-1, hepatocyte growth factor, keratinocyte growth factor and vascular endothelial growth factor promote anagen phase of the hair cycle. Similarly, transforming growth factor-beta , interleukin 1-alpha and tumor necrosis factor-alpha promote onset of catagen .
In MAA tiny, pale hairs gradually replace large, pigmented ones. Androgens appear to reduce alopecia hair colour by inhibiting dermal papilla stem cell factor production, which is important in embryonic melanocyte migration and bulbar melanocyte pigmentation .
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Hair Cycle Dynamics And Androgenetic Alopecia
Hair is lost and replaced cyclically. Follicles undergo corresponding cyclic phases of growth, involution, quiescence and regeneration . The growth phase lasts for 3-5 years . As hair elongation is relatively constant at 1 cm per month, the duration of the growth phase is the primary determinant of the final hair length. At the end of anagen the involutional phase lasts for a few weeks. The period of hair follicle quiescence that follows lasts approximately 3 months . Hair follicle regeneration occurs in approximately the first week of anagen and once regenerated, the anagen phase continues until the hair reaches its final length.
D Printing Creates Patterned Hair Follicles
In the new study, Christianos team exploited the unique capability of 3D printers to create a more natural microenvironment for hair follicle growth.
The researchers used 3D printing to create plastic molds with long, thin extensions only half a millimeter wide. Previous fabrication techniques have been unable to create such thin projections, so this work was greatly facilitated by innovations in 3D printing technology, says Erbil Abaci, PhD, first author of this study.
After human skin was engineered to grow around the mold, hair follicle cells from human volunteers were placed into the deep wells and topped by cells that produce keratin. The cells were fed a cocktail of growth factors spiked with ingredients, including JAK inhibitors, that the lab has found stimulates hair growth.
After three weeks, human hair follicles appeared and started creating hair.
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The Photos Will Tell You The Truth
This is the easiest way to tell whether your hairline is receding or not. You can compare your recent photos with your old photos, and then you will then notice a huge difference if your hairline is receding. You can spot your hairline recession hardly in the mirror. But if you look at your photos from several years back, you can notice the noticeable difference in the hairline. It makes it easy to observe.
But you should always make sure that you compare the photos with the same lighting, which will display the hairline very clearly. Its because the things such as hair styling and lightings affect the highs and lows of the hairline. To get an accurate comparison, you can take a photo of the hairline every six months for comparing photos.
You can follow this step very quickly in your bathroom. If you notice the trend in the hairline, like thinning and temple hairs, then it is a signal of losing the hair.