Hereditary hair loss affects approximately 30 million women in the United States, according to the American Academy of Dermatology. Female-pattern hair loss—a.k.a. androgenetic alopecia—is the most common form and causes the hair on top of the head to thin. The over-the-counter preparation Rogaine, which contains the active ingredient minoxidil, can help. Applied directly to the scalp twice a day, it “can slow or stop hair loss in most women. In some cases, it can even help regrow hair,” says Sonia Badreshia-Bansal, a clinical instructor of dermatology at the University of California, San Francisco. “But the benefits are lost when you stop using it.” A newer over-the-counter regimen from DS Laboratories—which is composed of Revita Shampoo, Revita.Cor Conditioner, and Spectral.DNC-N (a scalp treatment)—includes antioxidants and stem cells and has been shown to stimulate and maintain healthy new growth. (Prices start at $31; dslaboratories.com for salons.)
While surgery may seem like a quick and effective fix to thin hair, it definitely is something that requires thorough consideration. Hair transplant surgery involves removing strips of hair from the nape of the head and placing them in sections with thin to no hair. This can be a daunting task depending upon how much natural hair you have remaining, and can also be expensive. Recovery can also be a bit trying, as soreness and pain often occur. If you would like to consider surgery as an option, make an appointment with a hair loss specialist to discuss options and cost. As one of the more pricey treatments, it is also one of the most effective treatments for hair loss if the benefits outweigh the risks for you.
This can be a very effective way to prevent the formation of dihydrotestosterone, similar to saw palmetto. Dihydrotestosterone comes from testosterone but licorice does not allow the hormone to go through this transition.
It has been estimated that roughly half of all men in the UK will suffer from Male Pattern Baldness to some extent by their 50th birthday. In those who have the gene for Male Pattern Baldness, a chemical process takes place within the body which triggers the hair loss. The exact time of life when this happens varies from person to person, but some men experience significant hair loss as early as their late teens and early twenties.
3. Wait for at least 6 months before evaluating the effectiveness of the regime. Preferably up to a year. You are doing yourself a disfavor if you start judging the efficacy before that. You’ll just frustrate yourself.
What you can do: Slow the hair loss by applying minoxidil (Rogaine) to the scalp twice a day. The drug works on both women and men, although women should use a lower-strength formula to prevent unnecessary side effects. Women should not use minoxidil if they are pregnant or nursing. Men may be treated with finasteride (Propecia), an oral medication.
A common sign of a thyroid condition is thinning hair, particularly hypothyroidism which is seen in post-menopausal women. Other symptoms include weight gain, dry skin and tiredness; if you suffer from any of these, seek advice from your doctor.
Wash hair with mild shampoo. Hair washing helps prevent hair loss as it can keep your hair and scalp clean (preventing the chances of infections that might cause hair loss). You should try not to wash your hair every day, since shampoo can strip hair of its natural oils — aim for every other day at the most. Provided you use a mild shampoo, clean hair will give the impression of more volume than dirty hair, which tends to sit flatter and more parted than clean hair.
With that said, The American Hair Loss Association still recommends the drug for those who have not responded favorably to finasteride treatment or for those who would like to add another product to their regimen. The AHLA does not recommend minoxidil as the first line of attack for men suffering with male pattern baldness, but does recognize it as an effective treatment for a small percentage of its users.
Yeast lives on the greasy skin — especially the scalp. Some people who get irritated by the yeast develop dandruff. The yeast is also associated with testosterone formation in the hair follicles. Dandruff shampoos kill this yeast and prevent flaky dandruff, reducing the amount of yeast on the scalp, which may reduce testosterone-induced hair loss.
Jimenez JJ, et al. Efficacy and safety of a low-level laser device in the treatment of male and female pattern hair loss: A multicenter, randomized, sham device-controlled, double-blind study. American Journal of Clinical Dermatology. 2014;15:115. www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed Feb. 9, 2015.
It’s still not entirely clear how minoxidil works. And there’s disagreement about how well it works. Used properly — twice a day, massaged deep into the scalp — it slows new hair loss. It also promotes new hair growth, although experts disagree about how much.
A trigger event. Many people experience a general thinning of hair several months after a physical or emotional shock. This type of hair loss is temporary. Examples of trigger events include sudden or excessive weight loss, a high fever, surgery, or a death in the family.
Although the causes of hair loss are many — including genetics, age, hormones, nutrient deficiencies, toxicity, medications and autoimmunity — changing the diet can, in many cases, be helpful. “Proper diet and supplements can slow or reverse hair loss, and make the hair thicker and healthier,” says nutritionist Dr. Joseph Debé.
^ Jump up to: a b c d e f Rogers, Nicole E.; Avram, Marc R. (Oct 2008). Medical treatments for male and female pattern hair loss. Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology. 59 (4): 547–566; quiz 567–568. doi:10.1016/j.jaad.2008.07.001. ISSN 1097-6787. PMID 18793935.
Derma roller may be a good hair loss treatment for others but results may vary. Needles sticking in your skin is still a different matter and needs to be given enough thought before using. The idea of using one is to open up closed pores to take in nutrients for a healthier outcome.
As mentioned, iron deficiency can lead to hair loss, most notably in women. Iron is plentiful in our ol’ friend spinach (and other dark leafy greens), soybeans, lentils, fortified grains and pastas. Liver may sound much less appetizing, but if you like pâté, your hair will benefit. Organ meats like liver have iron in abundance. Pâté could help cover your pate.
A good daily multivitamin containing zinc, vitamin B, folate, iron, and calcium is a reasonable choice, although there is no good evidence that vitamins have any meaningful benefit in alopecia. Newer studies suggest that vitamin D may be somewhat helpful and worth considering. Specific vitamin and mineral deficiencies like iron or vitamin B12 may be diagnosed by blood tests and treated.
Men aren’t the only ones who have to worry about losing their precious locks. While it may be more common among men, hair loss in women isn’t as rare as you might think. It’s estimated that hair loss affects 1 in 5 women. The most common types of hair loss are telogen effluvium and alopecia areata. Although it’s more common than alopecia areata, telogen effluvium is less severe. This occurs when the hair follicles stop growing and lie dormant and fall out within two to three months. Being that telogen effluvium is oftentimes caused by stress, trauma or medications, hair growth is typically restored within 6 to 9 months. On the flip side, alopecia areata occurs when white blood cells attack hair follicles, causing the hair to thin and fall out, usually in patches. This type of hair loss may require treatment as hair may not grow back on its own.
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This herb, is one of the main components of ancient Ayurvedic hair oils and hair tonics meant for preventing hair loss. It is the established Ayurvedic medicine to cure baldness and premature graying of hair too.
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What about ‘hair building fibers’?Products like Toppik use statically charged keratin fibers that bind to existing hair shafts, which may make hair look thicker, but does nothing to prevent hair loss. You might want to consider using one of these products in addition to an actual hair loss treatment, but don’t count on it alone.