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Understanding and Coping with Male Pattern Baldness

What is Male Pattern Baldness?

It is a fact that men are more prone to hair loss than women and that male pattern baldness is the single most common type of hair loss in males. According to the United States National Library of Medicine (NLM), more than half of all males over the age of fifty will be impacted by male pattern baldness in some manner.

Male pattern hair loss, called androgenic alopecia, is the result of a combination of hormones and heredity. It is the type of baldness we are fairly used to seeing in men as they age, often characterized by a receding hairline and thinning at the crown.


What Is The Cause of Male Pattern Baldness?

Male pattern baldness is often caused by genes or a family history of baldness. According to research, male pattern baldness is related to androgen hormones (male sex hormones)in males. The androgens play a key role in hair growth and maintenance.

Every hair on your head is somewhere in the process of a growth cycle. Hair goes through three (3) stages of growth during its lifetime: anagen, catagen, and telogen. Androgens are known to be the cause of hair loss in men because they reduce the length of time that hair spends in the anagen phase or active growth stage, which is why hair becomes thinner with each cycle it goes through.

After a while, the growth cycle for each hair comes to an end, and no new hair emerges in its place.

Adult men are more prone to male pattern hair loss and hair thinning than boys. Sometimes, hair loss begins in your teens, but it is more typically seen in adult males, with the risk increasing as they age.

Men who have a closely related family member with male pattern baldness are more likely to acquire the condition. This is particularly true when the relatives are on their maternal side. So, to determine the likelihood that you will develop male pattern baldness, look at the men on your mother’s side of the family.


How is Male Pattern Hair Loss Diagnosed?

Doctors can diagnose male pattern baldness is often by examining the pattern of hair loss. (Doctors might also ask the patient about family history and medications they are taking to rule out the role of drugs in any hair loss.)

Doctors use the patterns on the Norwood-Hamilton scale to diagnose pattern baldness. The scale consists of various images depicting different levels of pattern hair loss. The scale helps doctors determine how much hair loss is present. It also gives some indication about the way the hair loss might progress.

The scale goes from I (no hair recession) to VII (total hair loss).


What is a Scalp Biopsy?

A scalp biopsy might also be necessary to diagnose male pattern baldness. A scalp biopsy is a procedure where a doctor removes small sections of skin from the scalp and sends them to a laboratory for examination under a microscope. The samples are examined to rule out any abnormalities that might be causing or contributing to hair loss.


Can You Prevent Male Pattern Baldness?

There is no strong scientific evidence that male pattern baldness is preventable. Research does show that stress affects the production of certain hormones that can factor into hair loss, including male pattern hair loss.

Reducing stress is always good for your health and has many benefits! It is quite possible that decreasing stress slows hair loss.


Coping With Male Pattern Hair Loss

Male pattern baldness is not a true medical condition that requires treatment. For some men, however, it is unwelcome. Men unhappy with their appearance because of pattern baldness might want to consider ways to address their hair loss.

Counseling – People with male pattern baldness often find themselves struggling with anxiety, low self-esteem, depression, and the process of aging. These are very real issues that can be addressed with counseling. Speaking to a medical professional or social worker about coping with pattern baldness can be very beneficial.

Hairstyle – Many men experiencing pattern baldness can benefit from a haircut or style that makes hair look fuller or thicker.

Wig or hairpiece – The right wig or hair integration piece can provide men with exactly the hair they want. A wig can provide full coverage while hair integration maximizes the hair you have, seamlessly integrating it with a custom prosthetic. Creating a wig or hairpiece that gives you the style, cut, and coverage you want is not difficult with today’s technology and expertise.

Treatment options – Topical medication (like topical minoxidil) can restore some hair growth, but it takes time (sometimes a full year) and commitment (twice a day). Unfortunately, if you stop the medication, hair loss usually resumes. You can speak to a doctor about medical treatments that might be available to treat hair loss or reduce risk factors to minimize further hair loss.

Losing hair and thinning hair are often inevitable aspects of aging, aspects that are not always welcome. It would be nice if no one cared about whether or not we lose hair. But, the reality is that hair is important to how we see ourselves and how others perceive us.

Remember, male pattern hair loss affects most men-it is the most common cause of hair loss. When hair loss occurs, it is often expected, especially since so many men tend to be genetically predisposed to it.

Although you may be unable to stop your hair from thinning, you can take steps to restore your self-confidence and look like your best self. When this most common type of balding is making you unhappy, consider your options and explore treatments and solutions.


Call Riviera Hair Replacement Today

If you are experiencing male pattern baldness, call Riviera Hair Replacement to schedule a free consultation with our professionals. We can design and create a hair replacement solution that is right for you, suits your lifestyle, and gives you the look you want.

Call Riviera Hair Replacement now at 516-364-0110. Don’t let male pattern baldness prevent you from living your best life.