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 "Male Pattern Baldness"

Men's Health > Hair Loss > Male Pattern Baldness

Male Pattern Baldness

Don't you think it would be strange to consider male pattern baldness as a disease or as an ilness?

But really that’s what it feels like to the hundreds of millions of men who experience it.

Especially it’s potentially traumatic onset.

The technical term for male pattern baldness is “alopecia” or “androgenic alopecia”.

Hair has often been considered to be a cultural symbol of strength and beauty, and losing hair might seem like “nothing” to someone else, but it can devastate self-esteem. When one considers that about 95% of men experience male pattern baldness sooner or later, we can see that it is truly one of the most pervasive “illnesses” on this planet.

Hair Loss Black BookPerhaps the most irksome thing about male pattern baldness is that it’s not controllable; it’s genetically driven, and can happen at any time. Most men who are destined to experience male pattern baldness experience it at middle-age, but it’s a misconception to believe that’s it only occurs after 35 or 40 years of age. Many young men experience male pattern baldness much earlier in life.

The average human head contains a whopping one hundred thousand hairs; of which about ninety thousand are growing, and ten thousand are in what is called the “resting” state. This is normal. What is not normal, however, is when more than ten percent are in that resting state. When this ten percent threshold is exceeded, the onset of male pattern baldness is occurring.

Ultimately, medical professional point to three causes of male pattern baldness: hormones (androgens), genetic predisposition (inherited from the mother’s side), and age. This last factor is actually linked to the first one, as hormone changes in men tend to happen as they mature.

Treating Male Pattern Baldness

Though there are an array of self-described “miracle cures” for male pattern baldness, there is at this time no wholly scientifically accepted method of “ending” male pattern baldness. This is because for many men, it is a genetic issue; and cannot be prevented topically. However, some men use Minoxidil (Rogaine) and experience positive results. Finasteride is an orally administered medication that is also proving to be a good choice for some men experiencing male pattern baldness. It’s long-term effects are not well known, however, and there have been some side effects reported, such as erectile dysfunction and loss of sexual drive.

Some other popular non-medical treatments for male pattern baldness are hairs weaves, scalp flips, hair lifts, scalp extension, and hair transplants. These surgeries can be rather expensive, however, and some men don’t quite feel that these “look real enough”. However, this is changing, as advancements in hair replacement technology are ongoing. Of course, there is always the troupe option; which is actually fairly popular in most parts of the world, though not as prevalent in the US as they once were.

Some interesting alternative treatments for male pattern baldness are emerging; or rather, they’ve been around for quite some time in the east, but are gaining some acclaim now in the west. These remedies include herbs such as gingko biloba, ginseng, aniseed, and alfalfa.

Drew Voight

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