One of men’s biggest causes of worry for centuries, balding causes stress and the feeling of being physically unattractive. Balding has been a problem for men ever since it has become a standard for beauty. Women like men who take care of their hair and maintain a nice hairstyle. Being attractive has a lot to do with how you do your hair. Having a nice and clean hairstyle is attractive. But when you start losing your hair and are unable to style your hair the way you want to, it becomes a problem for most people and a big reason for stress.
The medical term for balding is also alopecia or Male Pattern Baldness. It affects mostly men, but it is not uncommon in women either. Male Pattern Baldness is so common that 3 out of 5 people experience some kind of hair loss before the age of 35. There are different stages of baldness, as can be seen on the right. Baldness is caused as the result of the byproduct of testosterone produced by our bodies. When our body produces testosterone, it also produces an androgen called Dihydrotestosterone (DTH). DTH then blocks the hair follicles which are present on the top of our heads, i.e. the frontal area to the crown. Blocking the hair follicles stops hair growth and the hair follicle then falls off. The extent or rate at which you might start balding depends on your genetics. You will have to look at the hair of men on your mother’s and father’s side.
Realizing this problem among men; doctors and scientists have been trying to find solutions to reverse balding for many years. They came up with solutions such as snake oil, fats from hippopotami, crocodiles, tomcat, snakes, porcupine hair, and even tea. Manufacturers engineered devices like hot heads where people would spend about 15 minutes under a blue light that produced heat which would supposedly reverse hair growth. All solutions except hair transplant surgeries proved worthless.
Therefore, if you are someone who is balding noticeably and want to regrow fallen hair follicles, there is not much you can do that will come cheap. These are mostly all prescription drugs so you will have to see your general physician or a dermatologist before using them.
Ways to Stop Balding and Grow Back Hair :
1) Lifestyle changes
Whether it be for the betterment of your hair or some other issue, implementing positive lifestyle changes is good for you. First of all, eat a balanced diet. Include a variety of vegetables, whole grains, fruits, and lean protein in your diet. This will keep your hair in the best and healthiest state. Consume foods that are rich in iron, omega-3 fatty acids and zinc. Most importantly, stay hydrated. Secondly, if you are someone who is a heavy drinker or smoker, you should immediately quit if baldness is one of your big worries. Thirdly, reduce stress and get scalp massages. Both of these go hand in hand. Scalp massages will improve blood flow which will result in healthier hair growth, along with acting as a stress reliever.
2) DHT-blocking shampoo
Switch to a DHT-blocking shampoo. This is one of the first things you should do when fighting hair loss. DHT is the byproduct of testosterone that causes the hair follicles on the top of your head and the crown to shrink and fall. The main ingredient in such shampoos is ketoconazole which disrupts the DHT pathway to the scalp. They also contain vitamins such as vitamin A, vitamin B12, vitamin C and vitamin D that don’t necessarily promote hair growth, but create a positive environment that promotes the growth of new hair. Depending on the company, you also get other varieties of ingredients that promote hair growth such as pumpkin seed oil, saw palmetto, and rosemary oil.
3) Using minoxidil or finasteride
Both of these drugs have different ways of usage which depend on the rate or extent of your balding. Minoxidil usually comes in a liquid form which has to be applied on the scalp twice a day or as directed by your physician. People who are in a further advanced stage of balding might be prescribed finasteride which comes in a tablet form. This medication is stronger and more effective at stopping DHT production. It is crucial to know that using more than the directed dosage at one time might increase side effects. Only use these products under the guidance of a medical professional. Tell your doctor if you are allergic or have any kidney, liver or scalp disease. Women have to let the doctor know if they are pregnant or are planning on pregnancy.
4) Hair Transplants
To scrutinize each detail regarding hair transplants would take a whole another article. Hair transplants, basically, are of two types. One is known as Follicular Unit Transplantation (FUT), which involves removing skin from the back of the scalp where the present is an abundance of hair follicles and surgically reinserting them in the area of the scalp where you are experiencing hair loss. The other one is called Follicular Unit Extraction (FUE), where each hair follicle is removed from the scalp and surgically reinserted into the bald parts. Hair transplants are expensive and can deeply impact your pockets if you are not well dependent financially. In a lot of cases, it can also take multiple hair transplants to get the desired outcome. A good result depends on the skills and experience of the hair transplant surgeon.
Men across the globe face the problem of balding. For some, balding can affect their confidence early in their 20s and for some, it can take up to 10-20 years for the balding to be noticeable. A balding head is seen across men mostly above the age of 35 years. Being afraid of the judgment of others will prevent you from living your life to the fullest. As said above, it is extremely common for men to experience balding, so there should be no room for low self-esteem.
Hair transplants are a temporary solution to a problem that will linger around you throughout old age. Most hair transplant surgeries go hand in hand with hair loss preventive medications such as finasteride or minoxidil which can take a poll on your pockets in the long term. It is best to accept your baldness for what it is and it should be in your control to not let it have a negative impact on your mental well-being.