HAIR LOSS IN MEN
Male Pattern Balding
A condition inherited from either one or both parents is the cause of over 90% of all hair loss in men. It is quickly recognisable because the loss results in a familiar pattern at the crown, front or the entire top of the head. The back and sides are left unaffected. It is called ‘Male Pattern Baldness’ often referred to as ‘MPB’ or by its medical name ‘Androgenetic Alopecia’.
Male pattern baldness can affect some men even in their early 20’s. Others may not notice hair loss until early middle age or even later. Around 70% of men will experience MPB before the age of 65.
What Causes Male Pattern Balding?
Like most things about the body, hair loss is a complicated process. Most of its secrets are still undiscovered. Through scientific studies and observations, even around 2000 years ago it was thought the hormone Testosterone was the cause of Male Pattern Baldness but it was later discovered that dihydrotestosterone (DHT) was the real culprit.
In the scalp at hair follicle level, testosterone is converted to dihydrotestosterone by the enzyme 5-alpha reductase. The hair loss process begins when specific receptors attract and bind the dihydrotestosterone to the hair follicle. Only certain hair follicles found on the top, back and sides of the head are affected. Exactly which hair follicles are affected depends on your family hair genetics.
As the hair loss process progresses, hair follicles miniaturize, producing shorter, finer hairs. When a hair is lost with each progressive cycle, it is replaced with a finer hair that will grow for a shorter length of time. When the hair follicle has produced its capability if 25 hairs, it is then exhausted and no amount of lotions, potions, pills or lasers will produce a new hair.
Should a man suffering from Male pattern balding wish to treat his hair loss, it is important to act when the hair loss is first noticed or at least while there is still adequate hair remaining. When the hair loss has gone ‘past the point of no return’ and baldness is evident there are only two viable options to regain hair – Hair Transplantation or a Hair Replacement System.
Other Causes of Male Hair Loss
At the beginning of this article it was stated that 90% of male hair loss is due to Male Pattern Balding. This means the remaining 10% are due to other reasons. These can be any number of problems and are often similar causes as female hair loss. A small percentage of men may be anaemic or iron deficient,and often those who are vegetarian, blood donors or have had surgery. This type of hair loss is far easier to treat than Male Pattern Baldness and far better results can be achieved.
It is important to establish the cause of hair loss with a reputable professional before embarking on any form or treatment. Self diagnosis can be costly if you choose the wrong or inefficient treatment. As you are probably already aware, there are lots of people who will readily sell you a hair loss ‘wonder’ cure which may not work.
- Male Pattern Balding is the cause of hair thinning or loss in 90% of men.
- 60% of men or more will experience Male Pattern Balding before the age of 65.
- Male Pattern Balding only affects the top, crown and upper sides of the head.
- If you are losing hair from your entire scalp, there may be another reason.
- Men do not suffer Male Pattern Balding before puberty.
- Male Pattern Balding is not caused by poor scalp circulation.
- Hair follicles can only produce around 25 hairs each.
- Male Pattern Balding is caused by dominant genes inherited from either or both parents.
- There are effective treatments available for Male Pattern Balding if treated while adequate hair still remains.
Suffering from Hair Loss?
View our useful initial self-diagnosis flow chart to see what treatment options may be available to you. Then Contact The Cotswold Trichology Centre to arrange a consultation with our expert Trichologist Sally-Ann Tarver.