Male Pattern Baldness – Causes and Treatments
Statistics indicate more than 50 percent of men above 50 years of age suffer from the problem of androgenic alopecia, in simple words, Male Pattern Baldness. Gradually thinning hair and bald patches coming up on the scalp are an indication of the problem. It is imperative to get the problem treated to control the problem to a certain extent.
+ Causes of Male Pattern Baldness
There are many reasons why men suffer from the problem of male pattern baldness. Some of the prominent causes of male pattern baldness are-
It is one of the major reasons behind the problem. Many people have a history of baldness.
It is associated with androgens or male sex hormones. These hormones are responsible for many functions in men and one of them is regulating the growth of hair.
- Hair Growth Cycle
Every hair undergoes a set cycle of growth. In men facing hair loss issues, this growth cycle gradually weakens. The hair follicles shrink and this results in producing finer and shorter hair strands. Gradually, the hair growth cycle of each hair comes to an end and no new hair grows.
- Health Issues
Although male pattern baldness largely occurs due to genetics and weak hair growth cycle, in some cases, it may occur due to certain serious medical conditions. Men who suffer from problems like thyroid conditions, cancers, etc., also show this condition. Medications and anabolic steroids taken by them also leave an impact on their hair health.
- Fungal Infections
In certain cases, fungal infections on the scalp or nutritional disorders may also result in men suffering from male pattern baldness.
- Scalp Conditions
Certain scalp health conditions like redness, rashes, pain, hair breakage, peeling of the scalp, unusual hair loss pattern, and patchy hair loss are also responsible for this condition.
+ Who is at Risk?
In some cases, male pattern baldness can start as early as the teenage years. Although it is a disease that is majorly seen in adult men, certain medical and genetic factors can increase the likelihood of this problem even at a very age.
Men with fathers, forefathers, and relatives suffering from the same problem are at a higher risk. If maternal relatives have this problem, the chances are higher.
+ How to Spot the Male Pattern Baldness?
Many men fail to spot the onset of the problem and that they are at risk. It is important to keep an eye on the crown and temples of the head because this problem begins in this area. Some men may notice just a single bald spot coming up at the back of his head. This is a clear indication of the start of the male pattern baldness problem.
In a few cases, men notice receding hairline in an “M” shape which is also an indication of the onset of the problem. Once the problem starts, it continues until most of the hair or all are gone. Thus, it is important to quickly diagnose the problem and start the treatment.
+ Major Hair Loss Male Pattern Baldness Treatments
With advancements in the field of medical sciences, it is possible to treat this problem to a significant extent with timely intervention. Here are a few prominent Male Pattern Baldness Treatments that can help men enjoy a fuller head of hair.
- Changing Hairstyles
Many times, combing hair in a set style also results in patches or balding. Changing hairstyles can help the person in hiding these patches or hair loss. Thus, sometimes, even getting a creative hair cut can also help make thinner hair look fuller.
- Wigs or Hairpieces
Another way of hiding hair loss is by using hair pieces or wigs. It covers complete baldness, receding hairlines, and thinning hair effectively. Wigs and hairpieces are available in multiple colours, styles, and textures. Men who have just a patch or only one area where they see receding hairline can go for this option to keep it hidden.
Another Male Pattern Baldness treatment option available is hair weaves that are a kind of wigs that are sewn into the person’s natural hair. This treatment option works only when there is enough hair to sew the weave. Many men choose this option for their problem because it looks natural, always stays on, and the person can even indulge in activities like showering, swimming, and sleeping without any problem.
- Rogaine or Minoxidil
It is one of the most popular hair loss treatment options available in the market. It is a topical medication that is directly applied to the scalp. This medication not only slows down the pace of hair loss but also help in stimulating hair follicles resulting in the growth of new hair. It is prudent to note here that this medication takes a minimum of four months’ time to show visible results. Also, as soon as the medication is stopped, the hair loss problem begins again.
Some men may experience problems like irritation, dryness, scaling, and burning sensation on the scalp. It is prudent to visit a hair loss specialist when problems like swelling, weight gain, rapid heartbeat, trouble breathing, chest pain, etc., are experienced.
- Propecia or Finasteride
Proscar, Propecia, or Finasteride is an oral medication that helps in slowing down the rate of hair loss in men. The medication works by blocking male hormone production which is responsible for the loss of hair in men. This medication produces excellent results until the time it is taken. As soon as the medication is stopped, the problem of hair loss returns.
The results of this medication can be seen only when it is taken for a minimum of three months to one year. If even after taking it for a year, there are no visible results, the doctor may ask the patient to stop taking the same.
- Hair Transplants
Transplant of hair is an expensive and invasive hair loss treatment. This transplant of hair works by taking hair from scalp areas that are showing active growth and are then transplanted on balding and thinning areas of the scalp. This treatment works well but may require a lot of sittings. The only risk in this procedure is infection and scarring. Many men go for this treatment because it is permanent and looks completely natural.
Hair loss conditions can make a man lose his self-confidence and esteem. Hair loss is a big change in the looks and appearance of the man. Sometimes he may need quick counselling if he exhibits signs like low self-esteem, anxiety, emotional issues, and depression because of male pattern baldness.
+ Is It Possible to Prevent Male Pattern Baldness?
Many men have this question and the answer to it is that there is no sure-shot way of preventing male pattern baldness. As per experts and specialists in this field, stress is also one of the reasons why men experience receding hairlines and incessant hair fall. This is because stress is one of the contributing factors in the production of male sex hormones. Participating in relaxing activities like listening to music, walking, spending some quiet time and more are a few ways to avoid hair fall occurring due to stress.
+ Is it possible to Reverse Balding?
Yes, Male Pattern Baldness can be reversed to a significant extent by using medications like Minoxidil and finasteride. This medication is known to reverse balding and stimulate new hair growth. Many men have found excellent results from these medications. The only way to get desirable results from these medications is to be persistent and take the medication for the recommended period or more.
Due to poor lifestyle, eating habits, pollution, and many other contributing factors, the problem of male pattern baldness has increased significantly. Thus, it is important to bring change in your lifestyle, eat healthy and balanced food, and indulge in some relaxing activities to keep the male hair loss problem at bay. If the problem is still there, consult with a Hair Specialist and start with the best Hair Loss treatment to enjoy excellent results.