What Can Be Done About Hair Loss
Many individuals who experience hair loss will likely explore and utilize a number of treatments that disguise, prolong, or reverse hair loss.
Disguising Hair Loss
Some men may initially choose to wear hats or hair pieces to disguise their hair loss. Others may opt to style their hair to cover balding areas, or to shave their head. Some individuals may even attempt to camouflage their hair loss by using a coloured hair spray that adheres to the remaining hairs in the area to give the illusion of a thicker head of hair.
Women experiencing hair loss may try a variety of hairstyles to try and camouflage thinning areas. Some may try wearing headbands, scarves, or wigs to disguise their thinning hair.
While all of these are viable options for disguising hair loss they are not solutions for slowing or reversing hair loss.
Slowing or Reversing Hair Loss
There are only two medications known to treat hair loss as a result of Androgenetic Alopecia. These products are Propecia® and Rogaine®.
Propecia® is a Food and Drug Administration (FDA)/Health Protection Branch (HPB) approved oral prescription medication developed to treat Androgenic Alopecia (male pattern baldness). Propecia® comes in the form of a tablet and is taken once daily to slow down or reverse hair loss on the back of the head (the vertex) as well as the mid-scalp areas. This treatment can only be prescribed by a physician and is not intended for use by women or children.
Through research, it’s been discovered that the hormone dihydrotestosterone (DHT) is an important factor in the development of male pattern baldness. DHT can shrink or ‘miniaturize’ hair follicles, in turn shortening their lifespan and preventing them from producing hair normally. Propecia® impedes the formation of the DHT hormone, in turn delaying the development of male pattern baldness.
Propecia® hinders progressive thinning of the hair, making it advantageous for males with early onset male pattern baldness. Those with early signs of thinning in the mid-scalp and vertex areas are more likely to benefit from the treatment. During clinical testing, 83% of men either maintained or increased their hair count while using Propecia®.
Visible results from Propecia® are progressive and it must be taken consistently in order to retain benefits. Benefits will diminish once the medication is stopped, and any hair growth or maintenance will be negated within 1 year after the medication is discontinued.
Similar to Propecia®, Minoxidil (sold under the brand name Rogaine®) has been clinically proven to inhibit or stop the progress of hair loss on the vertex and mid-scalp areas, but has shown little effect on receding hairlines. Both men and women can benefit from this medication.
Minoxidil, the first topical solution clinically proven to grow human hair, was approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 1998. There are two strengths available for this treatment; a 5% concentration solution and a 2% concentration solution. Minoxidil can be found under the brand names Rogaine®/Regaine®, Vanarex and Mintop.
This topical foam-based solution should be applied to the scalp twice daily, and continually to remain beneficial. The greatest successes have been seen within 5-24 months of taking the medication. If the patient stops using this treatment, any hair growth or maintenance will be lost within 1 year.
The Only Long-Lasting Solution
While many of these options present ways of either disguising, slowing or reversing hair loss, none of them provide a long-term solution to restore lost hair. Hair restoration at the Hair Restoration Clinic is a long lasting solution to hair loss that meaningfully targets the causes of hair loss which are genetic and hormonal. By taking hair that is not affected by the hormone DHT and transplanting it into thinning areas, hair transplantation will restore your natural hair volume, creating a natural, permanent, youthful hairline.