September 20 Losing your hair, or losing your mind?
Male Pattern Baldness- Learn the facts so you can accept the truth
So you’ve noticed your forehead getting larger… Or does it seem like there is a spot on the mirror where your hair used to be? Don’t worry, you are not alone. Fifty percent of men suffer receding hairlines or male pattern baldness before age 50. The truth about male pattern baldness (MPD) is that it is heredity. Lifestyle and diet can play minor roles in hair loss but, losing hair from medications or disease is typically reversible when treatment is stopped or lifestyle changes take place.
There are so many myths and half-truths being passed from one generation to the next. I’m sure it can get very overwhelming. I hear them in the barbershop all the time. And as much as I would love to say, yes it is your baseball cap that is causing your thinning, it’s not. But the good news is if you’re uncomfortable with your thinning hair wearing your hat will hide it without doing any damage. The hair that you lose was going to come out anyway.
So there it is, you’ve finally accepted that you are losing your hair. Like most men facing this issue, it is hard to accept, at least at first. It’s one of those things that creep up on you and remind you that you’re getting older. Or in a lot of cases, men feel they are becoming less desirable. (more on that later)
The big question now, what can you do? Can you help prevent hair loss? Can you grow it back?
The good news is yes. You can help prevent future hair loss and in a few cases even regrow hair that is already gone. The bad news is, it can be costly and time-consuming.
Drugs that have been approved by the FDA are finasteride (Propecia) and minoxidil (Rogaine). Both have proven to be better at maintaining what you have than regrowing what you lost. Propecia (finasteride) works by blocking the conversion of testosterone to DHT, but a major side effect to consider: It could mess with nerve-signaling pathways to your penis, resulting in erectile dysfunction, and a deflated libido. Doctors have said that this side effect does not happen in most cases but from my point of view… Case closed on this being better than losing some hair. You want to talk about feeling undesirable or like less manly talk to men struggling with ED. Rogaine works by stimulating hair growth, although scientists aren’t sure how. The problem with Rogaine is people don’t use it correctly, you have to use Rogaine at least twice a day for at least six months before you see any results. In some people, it will even cause shedding in the first month or two.
If you feel like you can commit yourself to the regimen, try it. You don’t have anything to lose except more hair. From my experience, most people don’t stick with it. Most of us are motivated by immediate results and waiting six months to see results is a fairly lengthy process considering the fact that not all of your hair will grow back in the six-month time frame, that time frame is to see ANY results.
What about transplants? This surgery (yes it is considered surgery) that moves hair you already have to fill an area with thin or no hair. Doctors have been doing these transplants in the U.S. since the 1950s, but techniques have changed a lot. You usually have the procedure in the doctor’s office. First, the surgeon cleans your scalp and injects medicine to numb the back of your head. Your doctor will choose one of two methods for the transplant: follicular unit strip surgery (FUSS) or follicular unit extraction (FUE) With FUSS, the surgeon removes a 6- to 10-inch strip of skin from the back of your head. He sets it aside and sews the scalp closed. This area is immediately hidden by the hair around it.
If you’re getting the FUE procedure, the surgeon’s team will shave the back of your scalp. Then, the doctor will remove hair follicles one by one from there. The area heals with small dots, which your existing hair will cover.
The price of a hair transplant will depend largely on the amount of hair you’re moving, but it generally ranges from $4,000 to $15,000. Most insurance plans don’t cover it. As with any kind of surgery, transplants have some risks, including bleeding and infection. There’s also the chance for scarring and unnatural-looking new hair growth.
I have dealt with clients with old-school hair plugs. They are awful!! FUSS clients hair seems to be fine, but you have to leave your hair longer to cover the telltale scar. FUE is the most natural looking with minimal if any scarring. I guess at that point it comes down to cost vs vanity.
Feeling better yet?? Didn’t think so. Don’t worry the best news is coming! I stand behind this 100%! As a barber, I have an appreciation for men’s look and style, as well as the delicate nature of this issue. As a woman, I can definitively say for myself and every female friend, co-worker or family member I’ve known all agree… And so does society overall, men and women. BALD IS SEXY!!
A shaved head is a vast improvement over trying to hide an obvious problem of hair loss. In fact, research reveals that a guy with a shaved head is viewed as taller, more masculine, and more dominant than one with a full head of hair.
So much so that just by looking at a man with a shaved head people estimated that they could bench over 10% more weight than they actually do.
It is no surprise to me, that men with shaved heads were deemed more attractive than those with thinning hair.
To shave or not to shave??
If you’re still feeling uneasy about doing the deed, go talk to a barber you trust. Explain what you’re considering and ask for some advice. A good barber understands that this is a huge change for you and will often advise you to do it in a few stages. Allowing you to adjust to your new look before pulling the razor out.
So what do I advise? As always, do what works for you. But understand that no matter how many supplements you try or shampoos you invest in, even the transplants don’t prevent the rest of your hair from its balding process. Accept it, in fact, embrace it. There isn’t anything more attractive than confidence!!
If you aren’t quite at the point that you actually need to cut it off, talk to me, as your barber I’ve heard it all and can help you come up with the best plan of action.