You Think You're Losing Your Hair. Now What?

Created on March 10, 2019 by Mosh
Share this blog:

For a while, you hoped it wasn’t true. “The lighting in this room is bad,” you told yourself. Alternatively, maybe: “It’s just styled poorly.”

However, you’re ready to begrudgingly admit that your hair isn’t the same as it was five or 10 years ago. Losing your hair, it’s not maturing into a distinguished look like many of your friends. It’s just… vanishing. You’re losing your hair.

(If you’re still not sure, look for these signs.)

However, don’t worry. You aren’t alone. By age 35, two-thirds of men experience some kind of hair loss. By age 50, 85% of men have significantly thinning hair while 25% of men who suffer from male pattern baldness start losing around age 21.

Feelings of disappointment and frustration are normal. Losing your hair can feel like a big deal. You might wonder if it will hold you back in life.

Most importantly, you’re probably wondering what you should do about it if anything at all. So now that you’re losing your hair, what comes next?

Free download: Lifestyle Changes to Make Right Now That Will Preserve Your Hair

Download now

Hair Loss vs. Balding

First, it’s important to distinguish between normal hair loss and premature balding.

Most blokes experience some level of hair loss at some point in their life. Their hairlines creep back a bit (mostly at the temples), and there will be some general thinning across the crown and top. This is called “maturing.”

While there’s nothing fundamentally different between maturing and balding (they’re caused by the same thing), balding is a more advanced condition that many men consider undesirable. Over time it creates the familiar horseshoe pattern.

Losing your hair

If you’re losing your hair in patches or on the sides and/or back of your head, you may not be dealing with male pattern baldness (MPB). You could have an underlying medical condition. Stress, smoking, and other lifestyle habits can affect your hair quality, as well. Ask your doctor about non-MPB conditions.

How much hair will you lose? It's nearly impossible to tell at a glance how much hair you will lose over the course of your life. However, since hair loss is genetic (more on this in a minute), you can get a good idea where you will end up by looking at your father and your grandfathers.

Causes of Hair Loss

Male pattern baldness is entirely genetic. Contrary to popular hair loss myths, it comes from both sides of your family.

A hormone called dihydrotestosterone (also called 5α-DHT or just DHT) binds to the androgen receptors on your hair follicles, choking them off from blood and nutrients. Over time, the follicles struggle to produce hairs, shrink, and eventually die.

Where does the DHT come from? It’s derived from testosterone by the enzyme 5α-reductase. We can reduce the amount of DHT in our bodies by reducing the amount of 5α-reductase. However, don't worry; this doesn't affect the amount of testosterone in your body.

Should You Treat Hair Loss?

Hair loss is a natural process. Losing your hair doesn’t come with any healthcare ramifications, so your first step is to ask yourself if you want to treat it at all.

There are plenty of bald men who live happy and successful lives. They don’t give their hairlines and scalps a second thought, so they don’t feel the need to treat their hair loss.

However, for many guys, feeling good requires looking good, too. You may need a hairy head to feel confident and take steps to build the life you want, and that’s okay, also.

Ultimately, choosing to treat or not treat your hair loss is a personal decision.

Even though at Mosh we offer products to help guys recover their hair, our true goal is to empower you to live your dream life - to have the family, friends, sex, and career that makes you happy. However, if that dream doesn’t require hair, letting it go may be the best decision for you.

Is it Stress or Diet?

If your hair loss bothers you, it's tempting to blame it on something you can change. A lot of guys insist that their hair loss comes from stress, poor diet, or other lifestyle factors.

While these conditions can affect the quality and quantity of your hair, chances are you’re most likely dealing with male pattern baldness, especially if you’re losing hair in the common MPB regions.

There’s a clear link between hair loss and stress. When we experience stress, our bodies release cortisol, noradrenaline, and adrenaline. High levels of these chemicals affect your follicles.

However, to cause hair loss, the stress would have to be dramatic and/or long-lasting. Moreover, it would cause your hair to fall out uniformly across your head, not the horseshoe MPB pattern.

While there’s no direct relationship between stress and genetic hair loss, stress can worsen your genetic hair loss if you’re already predisposed to it. Other lifestyle factors like smoking and poor diet can accelerate the development of hair loss.

Like stress, there’s little reason to think diet is causing your hair loss either. Hair loss due to the diet requires long periods of malnourishment where you’re deprived of vitamins, minerals, and protein. You would know if you were malnourished to this degree.

Additionally, strict diets that cause sudden weight loss can cause some hair loss. However, again, you would know if that were the cause.

If you do experience hair loss from stress or poor diet, it should begin to recover as soon as you solve the stress or diet issue.

Now that you’re sure you’re losing your hair, you’ll want to rule out stress, diet, and environmental factors as potential causes. If you aren’t sure, speak to a doctor.

Treating Hair Loss

If you’ve decided to treat your hair loss, there are a few things you should know.
 

Timeline

The process takes time. While advancements in hair loss science happen every day, and some promising treatments will be available in the future. Currently, hair loss isn’t something we can reverse overnight. You could still take up to a year to see any results even if you are responding to treatments.

Why does it take so long? Because hair grows in phases. Each hair goes through three phases: Anagen, catagen, and telogen.

Losing your hair

Image: globallifeinlife.com

The anagen phase is when your hair grows. It lasts two to seven years. The catagen phase is ten days of slight regression.

The telogen phase is the reason for the delay. This is a resting phase where the hair does nothing for about three months. At the end of the period, the follicle releases the hair and has to grow a new one. 10-15% of your hairs are in this phase at any time.

This means that in any given time, a portion of your hairs won't grow, regardless of what you use to treat your hair loss. Furthermore, follicles stressed by the DHT require more time to produce the same hair as a follicle number DHT.

If you decide to treat your hair loss, you will have to stick with the treatment for at least a year to properly gauge your results.

Treatments

What should you use to treat your hair loss? In most cases, it’s smart to attack hair loss from several angles.

First, most guys benefit by introducing an internal medication that inhibits the enzyme 5α-reductase. In turn, this stops the production of DHT that chokes your follicles. In many cases, this method can also remove DHT from your body, so your hair improves.

Side effects of DHT blockers are rare, but a small portion of men experience reduced libido, erection problems, and breast tenderness. These effects subside after you stop taking the medication. (There could be other side effects as well.)

Second, many guys like to use growth stimulants to boost their follicles’ ability to produce hairs. This is usually a topical treatment applied directly to the balding areas of the scalp. Side effects are minor and might include scalp irritation and changes in hair color and texture.

While hair transplants are an option for some guys depending on the degree of hair loss, they don’t treat the underlying condition. They simply spread out follicles to create a better cosmetic appearance, but they don’t create more hair.

There are some other treatments you might choose to look into as well, like platelet-rich plasmamicro needling, or scalp tattoos. The effectiveness of these treatments are mixed, but they may be right for you.

It’s important to take steps to protect what you have left. Make these lifestyle changes right away to preserve your hair.

It’s important to take steps to protect what you have left. Make these lifestyle changes right away to preserve your hair.

 Download now

Your Next Step

If you’ve decided to do nothing about your hair loss, we recommend a tight haircut that lets light penetrate to your scalp. This will de-emphasize your thinning areas. When your hair loss becomes undeniable, trim it short or shave it off.

If you decide to treat your hair loss, consult with one of our doctors. They’ll tailor a plan to your unique hair loss and needs.

Topics: losing your hair, lifestyle changes, preserve your hair