Oh Boy, Where Did My Hair Go?! 3 Tips for Battling Male Hair-loss
Hair. It’s part of our physical identity. As much as we hate to admit it, we grow attached to our luscious locks regardless of gender. Male patterned hair loss or androgenic alopecia can start as early as adolescence and affects 50% of white males before the age of 50. This means up to 6 million heads in Canada left with less hair to keep them warm. In all seriousness, it also means 6 million men who may be struggling with their physical appearance due to obvious hair loss. This can be especially difficult for those going through adolescence, already a particularly important time for developing self-confidence. I can’t say with certain what this would be like but I can imagine it’s close to having one of your deep dark secrets labelled directly on your forehead. No thanks!
Why does hair loss occur?
Androgens or male sex hormones actually play a role in regulating hair growth. Dihydrotestosterone (DHT) is a male sex hormone derived from testosterone. When DHT binds to hair follicles, it shrinks them, forcing hair growth to suffer.
Ask your mom - This type of hair loss is inherited through your X chromosome, which comes from your mother – thanks mom! Check out your mother’s side of the family for baldness (especially your maternal grandfather), as this could give you a clue into your future.
M-pattern – this refers to the pattern of hair loss starting from the temples and crown, sparing the sides of the head. Keep an eye on the top of the head for initial signs of thinning.
Finer and Shorter - Gradually, hair follicles shrink and the growth cycle of hair weakens. Strands thin before hair loss occurs, so watch out for finer and shorter strands in the problem areas listed above.
If you're feeling helpless about your hair loss, there are a few things you can try:
Pumpkin Seed Oil – This has shown to block the enzyme that converts testosterone into pesky DHT. Hair growth increased by 40%, but the kicker is that it happened over 2 years.
Saw Palmetto – This is derived from a small palm tree residing in Florida and commonly used for signs of an enlarged prostate. Research has also shown some similar results as pumpkin seed oil.
Essential Oils – A study mixing thyme, rosemary, lavender, & cedar essential oils in jojoba and grapeseed oil, massaged topically on the scalp showed improvement in hair regrowth with use every night for alopecia areata.
Honourable Mentions – Acupuncture around the front hairline to stimulate hair follicles!
Unfortunately, many of these treatments require a great deal of commitment and time in order for them to work. But for those dealing with hair loss it may be worth it. Keep in mind male patterned hair loss has many other factors that should be considered including stress and nutritional deficiencies. We love our luscious locks, and we want you to as well, so for specific protocols come see us in the clinic!