Like Samson, men seem to have adapted to the thinking that their hair is the source of strength. It is a symbol of manliness. Not having a good hair would cause loss of confidence. Hair loss is somewhat associated with aging. Self-esteem is affected with this case and it is hard to get it back once lost. Looking good is an important factor to our lives. It boosts our morale and helps us achieve whatever we want. When something is wrong, everything somehow falls behind as well and might lead for the person not to grow or improve himself.
Male Pattern Baldness Defined
Male Pattern Baldness is famous for medical term androgenic alopecia. It is the most common type of hair loss in men. Male Pattern Baldness is hereditary sensitivity to dihydrotestosterone (DHT, a by-product of testosterone), which leads to finer hair, a diminishing hairline and may result to baldness.
It actually is a progressive state of hair loss that lead to baldness and ages that are affected may vary. Some may start at the age of 35 while others may experience it by the age of 50. Continuous study is done to further know about this hair loss.
Causes of Male Pattern Baldness
One cause that is considered for male pattern baldness is family history or genetics. Research has found that male pattern baldness is related with male sex hormones called androgens which function includes regulating hair growth.
Male pattern baldness reduces the growth cycle of the hair and hair follicles becomes smaller which results to short and thin strands of hair and progresses until no new hair grows on that area of the head. It normally doesn’t have medical effects yet there is some illness like cancer, thyroid condition and anabolic steroid are somehow related to it. Checking the medical history and having exams are some of the procedures done to avoid having complications.
Normally begins during teenage years then continues when in adult or as a man ages. Genetics is a vital factor. Male who have relatives that have the same experience has a high chance of getting it as well. Relatives on the maternal side are somehow the ones affected with this concern.
Sign of Male Pattern Baldness
Hair loss starts at the temples or crown of the head; you may have male pattern baldness. Some has a single bald spot while others have their hairline forming the letter “M” shape. There are cases as well that hairline is continuously reducing until most or all the hair is gone.
Approach to Hair Loss
- Hairstyle – having a good hairstylist can conceal the hair loss. They can do a haircut the will suit your hair loss problem.
- Wigs or Hairpieces –Wig can hide the hair loss issue (e.g. thinning of hair, receding hairlines, complete baldness, etc.) Wig stylist can provide a style that matches the texture of your hair so that it would still look natural and changes won’t be notice with your original hair.
- Weaves – These are wigs that are stitched to your normal hair. It is like a permanent hair which cannot be taken off for movement activities (swimming, dancing, showering, sleeping, etc.) The only harm that it may cause is it needs to be stitched again whenever there is a new hair growth that may damage your normal hair.
- Minoxidil (Rogaine) – is a limited medication applied to the scalp. Minoxidil slows hair loss for some men and trigger the hair follicles to grow new hair. Minoxidil require four months to one year to create visible results. Hair loss often repeats when you stop taking the medication. Possible side effects linked with minoxidil are dryness, irritation, burning, and scaling of the scalp. You should consult the doctor immediately if you have any of these harsh side effects:
- Weight increase
- fattening of the face, hands, ankles or abdomen
- breathing difficulty when lying down
- rapid heartbeat
- chest pain
- labored respiration
- Finasteride (Propecia, Proscar) – is a drug that slows hair loss for men which is taken orally. It functions by blocking the creation of the male hormone which is accountable for hair loss. Finasteride is proven better than minoxidil. Finasteride can start hair loss again.
You need use finasteride for three months to one year to see the outcome. If no hair growth happens after a year, your doctor will probably suggest stopping taking the medicine. The side effects of finasteride covers:
- Gentleness of the breast
- Breast enlargement
- Fattening of the face or lips
- Tedious ejaculation
- Ache in testicles
- Trouble having an erection
Finasteride can cause breast cancer although it is very limited. You should have any breast pain or lumps you consult a doctor soonest. Finasteride may impact prostate-specific antigen (PSA) tests used to examine for prostate cancer. The medicine reduced PSA levels, which is lower than normal results. Any increase in PSA levels when taking finasteride should be assessed for prostate cancer.
- Hair Transplant – it is a nosy and costly treatment for hair loss. Active hair growths are transferred to the areas that has thin or no hair at all. The good thing is that the hair is the same as your normal and it is long lasting.
- Counseling – one may ask advice from experts if we are experiencing emotional problems with our hair loss. It is a huge change that somehow is not that easy to accept. Masculinity is affected once this happen and asking help with the experts is a good thing to do.
Let us go back to the question can you prevent male pattern baldness? The answer is, there is no exact solution given to male pattern baldness. It will depend on your need and your personality. This is hereditary and we can say it runs in the blood. Technology can provide options to somehow slow down the hair loss yet there is no guarantee to prevent it from happening. It still can happen and you must be ready to accept the changes. Readiness and acceptance is the best prevention that can be given for this situation.