Hereditary male pattern and female pattern baldness is the most common form of hair loss. It is normal to lose about 500 hair per week. In people who are genetically predisposed to genetic hair loss, the hair follicles begin to die off in predictable patterns. Some people start losing hair as early is in their teenage years while other will start to lose hair later in life. Once the hair loss starts, it is a progressive process that will continue and worsen over time. While there is no cure for genetic hair loss, we have effective ways to stop it and possibly reverse the miniaturization process that precedes permanent loss of the hair follicles.
How do I know if I have genetic hair loss?
If you have a family history of hair loss on either your mother's or your father's side, you have a high probability of also having a genetic predisposition to hair loss. Men tend to have receding hair lines at their temples and crown while women tend to have more diffuse hair loss. The hair on the back of the head are usually spared in both sexes. If you look at the scalp under a microscope, you will see miniaturized hair follicles. People often mistake these miniaturized hair for new hair growing in. In actuality, the tiny thin follicles visible under the microscope are dying hair follicles. If you see a shinny scalp with no hair growing at all in the area of hair loss, that means the follicles have completely died off and the only way that you can have hair re-grow in these areas is to transplant hair from the back of your head to the areas where the follicles have died off in the sensitive areas such as the temples, crown and top of the head. However, if you see many miniaturized hair follicles still present in the thinning areas, then you are a good candidate for a hair restoration program. The first step would be to stabilized and stop the hair loss.
How do I stabilize hair loss
Genetic hair loss is caused by a hormonal by product of testosterone called DHT. Some of the testosterone present in your body convert into DHT or Dihydrotestosterone. In people who have a genetic sensitivity to DHT on the hair follicles, DHT will cause the hair follicles in certain areas of your scalp to go through a process called miniaturization. With each hair cycle, the hair follicle become thinner, shorter and weaker until they are too weak to break through the scalp. The follicle eventually dies and stops producing hair. By washing off the DHT from the scalp with over the counter products such as specialized hair loss formula shampoos and topical minoxidil, you can slow down the hair loss. The prescription medication finasteride stops the conversion of testosterone to DHT and is a very effective way to slow down or even stop the hair loss. Some men are unable to tolerate finasteride due side effects and it is contraindicated in women. Laser and LED lights also reduce the sensitivity of the hair follicles to DHT and can be very effective in slowing down and stopping hair loss. Professional lasers and prescription home use lasers work the best.
Can I reverse my hair loss?
If we catch the hair loss during the miniaturization stage where the hair follicles are sick but still alive, we have some very effective treatments that can resuscitate these dying hair follicles. Regenerative treatments such as PRP and exosomes and human stem cell derived growth factors have been shown to revive the miniaturized hair and allow them to grow back into thick healthy follicles.
What is my next step?
If you are reading this information, you are probably already experiencing hair loss. By the time you visibly notice hair loss, you have already lost at least 50% of your hair. The earlier we intervene, the better your chances are of stopping the loss and even restoring your hair. You can schedule a hair consultation at Omni Aesthetics, we will evaluate your scalp under a microscope to look for miniaturized hair and evidence of inflammation that can be seen on the scalp. We can perform a comprehensive blood test evaluation to make sure that you do not have medical conditions that may be contributing to your hair loss and we can identify nutritional and hormonal deficiencies that may be contributing to your hair loss. We can start the process of stabilizing your hair loss as soon as possible by putting you on simple regimens customized to your stage of hair loss. Once we stabilize the hair loss, we can discuss options for restoration. If you are a candidate, we will go over all of your options for non-surgical interventions. If your are too far advanced for medical intervention, we may recommend hair transplantation options but this would be a last resort.