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Should I See A Doctor For Hair Loss

What Services Do You Offer

Which doctor should I see if Im losing my hair?

We understand how devastating suffering hair loss can be, and the huge impact it has on quality of life. At our hair loss clinic in Birmingham, we offer comprehensive support, and the following:

We provide constructive advice on your cause of hair loss and treatment options. Read more about hair loss consultations.

We offer a range of treatments including creams, lotions, tablets and injections. Find out more about Steroid Injections and Oral Minoxidil.

We can make recommendations on providers of hair systems and cosmetics .

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How Long Does It Take For Hair To Grow Back

If youve ever experienced hair loss, how long it would take for your hair to grow back was probably at the top of your mind.

The truth is that hair loss and hair growth arise from complex bodily systems and depend upon a variety of factors. Read on to understand hair growth cycles and how your efforts to get back to healthy growth might be impacted, along with expert tips on what you should actually be doing to encourage thicker, fuller hair.

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The Benefits Of Seeing A Hair Loss Doctor

With hair loss drugs like minoxidil available over the counter, seeing a doctor for your hair loss might seem like an unnecessary step. However, there are still plenty of reasons to meet with a hair loss doctor if youre starting to experience the early signs of male pattern baldness.

One of the first reasons to see a hair loss doctor is that they can help you to identify the specific type of hair loss you have.

As we covered above, hair loss can occur for several different reasons. If you work long hours in a stressful environment, it could be telogen effluvium hair loss that occurs as a result of chronic, severe stress.

If youve recently dealt with a serious injury or illness that causes fever, its possible that it could also be telogen effluvium.

There are also other reasons for hair loss. For example, a diet that contains little or no essential vitamins and minerals can lead to weak, thinning hair. Some men also experience hair loss as a result of skin conditions, certain medicines and lack of sleep.

Hair loss can also be hereditary. For example, male pattern baldness often occurs in people with a family history of hair loss.

Since hair loss doctors specialize in identifying the primary causes of hair loss, they can quickly and easily inform you about why your hair loss is occurring, as well as what you can do to treat it effectively.

If your hair loss isnt genetic, a hair loss doctor can help you find out the root cause using one of several different tests:

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What Questions Should I Ask My Healthcare Provider

  • What is the cause of my hair loss?
  • How many strands of hair am I losing per day?
  • What type of hair loss do I have?
  • Will my hair loss be permanent?
  • Whats the best treatment for me?

A note from Cleveland Clinic

Hair loss may cause you distress whether it happens because of genetics, a disease, or even stress. Know that there are some treatments you can try, and expert dermatologists are there to help you. Your hair loss may be able to be reversed. See your healthcare provider as soon as you notice something wrong because the sooner you start treatment, the better.

A Trichologist Is Not Medically Trained

Hair Restoration Clinic Manhattan, NYC

A trichologist can of course help in some cases but can only give patients topical treatment for hair loss, as they are not medically trained. Unlike a dermatologist, they cannot perform tests that help with the diagnosis and evaluation of the condition and inform the best course of treatment these require special training.

For example, a dermatologist can perform a trichoscopy with a video dermatoscopy, a non-invasive technique that allows a rapid and magnified observation of the skins surface enabling the evaluation of hair thickness, presence of regrowing hairs and scalp inflammation. We can also perform a trigonometry, which involves an instrument that provides a numeric value of the hair quality. All of which are vital to in-depth diagnosis.

Dermatologists can also carry out a scalp biopsy, where a sample from the scalp is taken under local anaesthetic and tested under the microscope by a histopathologist. These tests are often necessary to evaluate cases of hair loss.

Only a dermatologist is qualified to carry out these tests, without which a full and thorough evaluation and diagnosis is not possible. Getting to the cause of your condition leads to better treatment. Furthermore, there are a variety of oral treatments available for hair disorders which a trichologist cannot prescribe but a dermatologist can so these are some reasons why you need a dermatologist for hair loss and not a Trichologist.

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You Have A Visible Receding Hairline

Male pattern baldness often begins at your hairline, with the hair around your temples starting to thin and your hairline beginning to recede.

Experts assess the severity of hair loss using the Norwood scale a seven-type scale that goes from a full hairline to severe, horseshoe pattern hair loss. In the first few stages, the hair on your scalp might still be thick, but your hairline may show visible signs of recession.

If youve started to notice your hairline becoming thinner, higher and more M-shaped, its best to make an appointment with a doctor that specializes in hair loss.

Doctors That Treat Hair Loss

The main doctor that specializes in treating hair concerns is a Dermatologist. Dermatologists are trained in hair, skin, and nail conditions, so if you choose to see a dermatologist you can be pretty confident that they are well versed on all things hair.

Another type of doctor with a specialty in hair loss specifically is a Trichologist. Trichologists are doctors that have a focus nearly exclusively on hair loss. In the UK, Trichologists receive training in this formal field of study for two years, but in the US there are no formal requirements for Trichologists.

A doctor can also be both a Trichologist and a Dermatologist, but not all Trichologists are Dermatologists.

Aside from these two types of doctors, it is also common for general practice or other specialties to know about the most common hair loss treatments and be able to help you out with your hair loss as they received general hair loss treatment training in medical school.

You can start by asking your current general doctor about hair loss treatment options, or you can have a free online appointment with our U.S. licensed doctors online to get help for your hair loss.

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Whom Should I Consult For Using Minoxidil And Propecia For Hair Loss

Ask U.S. doctors your own question and get educational, text answers â itâs anonymous and free!

Ask U.S. doctors your own question and get educational, text answers â itâs anonymous and free!

HealthTap doctors are based in the U.S., board certified, and available by text or video.

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What Kind Of Doctor To See For Hair Loss And What To Expect During The Visit

Visiting a Dermatologist for Hair Loss – My Review!

Read on to learn which doctors you can speak with to figure out a plan for your hair loss goals, as well as what to expect during a visit.

If you are experiencing hair loss, thinning, or just changes in your hair, there are doctors for that.

Seeing a doctor to maintain the health of your hair, and keep it fuller for longer is just as important as seeing a doctor for any other bothersome medical condition, and should not be avoided.

Read on to learn which doctors you can speak with to figure out a plan for your hair loss goals, as well as what to expect during a visit.

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What Type Of Training Does A Dermatologist Have

It takes roughly 12 years of education to become a licensed dermatologist.

Before they can begin practicing, a dermatologist must complete:

  • Four years of college to earn a bachelors degree
  • Four years of medical school to become a medical doctor
  • A year-long internship
  • Three years of residency, where they work alongside experienced doctors and complete 12,000 to 16,000 hours of patient treatment

What Support Is Available With Abnormal Hair Loss

Hair loss can be distressing and difficult to accept initially. Talking with others who have experienced hair loss may help. If you need to talk to someone, ask your doctor about counselling sessions available in your area, or for a referral to a counsellor.

Below are also some support groups you may find helpful.

NZ Alopecia Facebook support groupNZ Alopecia website Information from fellow New Zealanders living with alopecia. Links to support groups, personal experiences through to information about the wig subsidy.Wigs and hairpieces subsidy Information from the Ministry of Health regarding wigs and hairpieces subsidy for people who suffer from serious hair loss because of a medical condition or from certain cancer therapies.

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Which Type Of Doctor Treats Alopecia Areata

ANSWER

THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

This tool does not provide medical advice. See additional information.

Other Answers On:

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How Do Dermatologists Diagnose Hair Loss

Should you see a doctor for your hair loss?

Because so many things can cause hair loss, a dermatologist acts like a detective and begins by asking questions. The dermatologist will want to know whether your hair loss happened suddenly or gradually. Knowing this helps to determine the cause.

A dermatologist also will ask what medicines you take, what allergies you have, and whether you have been dieting. It is important to give the dermatologist accurate information. Like a murder mystery, the slightest clue can solve the case. Women may be asked about their menstrual cycles, pregnancies, and menopause.

The dermatologist also will carefully look at your scalp and hair. During an exam, the dermatologist may pull on your hair. Sometimes a dermatologist needs to pull out a hair to get the necessary evidence. And sometimes a dermatologist needs to look at the hair on the rest of your body to see whether there is too little or too much hair in other areas.

Sometimes the evidence lies in your scalp. The dermatologist may remove a small piece of the scalp. This is called a scalp biopsy. A dermatologist can quickly and safely perform a scalp biopsy during an office visit. A scalp biopsy can be essential to solving the case. Sometimes, a blood test is necessary.

Because so many things can cause hair loss, it can take time to find the cause.

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Can Stress Cause Hair Loss

There are three types of hair loss that is associated with stress, they are Telogen effluvium, Trichotillomania, and Alopecia Areata. With Telogen effluvium, stress causes the hair follicles to become dormant , and after three months in the resting period the hair falls out. This stress results in reduced hair growth and thinning. The stressor event, such as a fever, surgery, or other illness, can induce between 20 to 50 percent of scalp hairs to transition into the telogen phase, before the hair falls out. Alopecia Areata is an autoimmune condition where the immune system attacks its own hair follicles. Trichotillomania is an uncontrolled and impulsive disorder of pulling ones hair which results in the hair being pulled from the follicle. It can take six weeks to six months from a stressful event for hair loss to occur. Stress related hair loss can be permanent if its not treated in its early stages. In some cases, there can also be scar related issues such as cicatricial alopecia where damaged skin may impact hair growth, or prevent regrowth of new hair.

Are There Complications/side Effects Of Treatment

Minoxidil may irritate your scalp and cause dryness, scaling, itching and/or redness. See your dermatologist if this happens.

With Minoxidil you might also see hair growing in other places other than your scalp . Wash your face after you apply Minoxidil and make sure you avoid other areas when you apply it.

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What Is A Hair Loss Doctor

The term hair loss doctor refers exactly to what youd expect it to a doctor, usually a board-certified dermatologist, that specializes in diagnosing and treating hair loss.

Dermatologists are trained to identify, diagnose and treat medical conditions that affect your hair, skin and nails, including all forms of hair loss.

There are also trichologists, who are people trained specifically to diagnose and treat hair and scalp conditions. However, because they arent medical doctors, they cant prescribe medications to help treat hair loss.

If youre worried about hair loss, you can get professional advice by scheduling an appointment with a dermatologist. You can also talk to your primary care provider, who will be able to either diagnose your hair loss or refer you to a dermatologist for more specialized assistance.

What do dermatologists prescribe for hair loss? To treat hair loss, hair loss doctors may prescribe medications such as minoxidil and finasteride, as well as hair loss shampoos, conditioners and other hair loss products.

In addition to dermatologists, some plastic surgeons also specialize in treating hair loss. These doctors may offer surgical hair restoration procedures, such as hair transplant surgery.

Although most cases of hair loss happen in men, hair loss doctors also treat hair loss in women, such as female pattern hair loss.

How Can A Dermatologist Diagnose Hair Loss

What You Can Do about Hair Loss

If youre losing hair, visiting a medical dermatology clinic is one of the best steps you can take. A dermatologist can assess your hair loss and pinpoint a specific diagnosis. They will then find an appropriate treatment if applicable.

During your appointment, the dermatologist will ask you questions about your hair loss and overall health. Theyll ask how long youve noticed the hair loss, whether youre taking any medications, and if you have a family history of hair loss or baldness.

The doctor will also examine your nails and scalp, as the health of these areas might provide clues for diagnosis. The specific pattern of your hair loss can indicate a specific diagnosis as well. In some cases, they will perform a blood test and scalp biopsy to check for medical conditions that might cause hair to fall out.

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How Is Abnormal Hair Loss Treated

Treatment depends on the cause of your hair loss. For example, any infection will be treated. If your medicines appear to be causing your hair loss, your doctor may stop them. Hair loss caused by a medical condition will stop when you recover from that medical condition. Deficiencies of either iron or vitamin B12 can be treated by your doctor. Alopecia areata itself is usually treated with corticosteroids, powerful anti-inflammation medicines. These are used as local injections, creams or tablets. A skin consultant will advise you about this treatment.

If you wish to slow or stop the progression of hair loss, there may be treatments available such as medicines or hair transplantation. The latter therapy does not have the custom generated some 30 years ago, partly because of its cost and the few practitioners of that art. There are over-the-counter products available, eg, Regaine, while doctors may prescribe minoxidil or finasteride in some cases.

Complementary and alternative therapies, such as acupuncture and ultra-violet therapy, have been promoted by some health advocates. However, the evidence does not exist that these are effective options.

You may consider wearing a wig. Your doctor will help you find a source. See also information on the wigs and hairpieces subsidy.

What Is The Outcome For Someone Who Has Hair Loss

With an accurate diagnosis, many people who have hair loss can see hair regrowth. If you need treatment for regrowth, the earlier you start, the more likely you are to see regrowth.

Its important to understand that:

  • Not every type of hair loss can be treated, but a dermatologist may be able to prevent further hair loss.

  • It can take months before you see results from treatment.

  • No one treatment works for everyone, even two people with the same type of hair loss.

  • Sometimes, hair loss is stubborn and requires trying different treatments before finding one that works.

Self-care also plays an essential role in preventing and treating hair loss. To find out what dermatologists recommend, go to Hair loss: Self-care.

Images1,2: Getty Images

3: Property of the American Academy of Dermatology, A to Z Video Series

4: Image used with permission of Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology: J Am Acad Dermatol. 1998 39:578-89.

ReferencesAdil A, Godwin M. The effectiveness of treatments for androgenetic alopecia: A systematic review and meta-analysis. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2017 77:136-141.

American Academy of Dermatology:

  • Research demonstrates potential of platelet-rich plasma therapy for hair loss News release issued March 1, 2019. Last accessed May 22, 2019.

  • New generation of laser and light therapies could provide future treatment options for skin, hair and nail conditions, News release issued March 16, 2012. Last accessed May 22, 2019.

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