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Hair Loss in Men: What You Need to Know

Hair Loss in Men: What You Need to Know

Hair loss in men is definitely not uncommon. In fact, the American Hair Loss Association estimates that 85% of men will have thinning hair by the age of 50 with over 95% of that hair loss attributed to male pattern baldness. For most men, balding is something that is inevitable. However, no matter how frequently it occurs, experiencing hair loss doesn’t make living with the condition any easier.

Over the years, men have tried to find ways to cover their bald spots, aiming for a natural look with combovers, toupees, or by simply shaving the rest of the hair. While these serve as temporary solutions, they are less than ideal. Many hope for a hair regrowth solution to cover the spots now left bare and fortunately, there are solutions that can provide just that.

When men experience hair loss, it can be just as embarrassing and unwelcome as it is for women. In some ways, it can feel worse. Options for covering thinning hair or bald patches in men tend to be more limited. Also, women often receive more emotional support from their peers and friends regarding how hair loss makes them look and feel. Hair loss can be a frustrating ordeal for both men and women, but it is not a problem anyone has to face alone.

middle aged man with hair loss

Common Causes

What causes hair loss in men? Hair loss can occur at different times and in different stages. It can happen all at once or it can be more progressive. It can start and then stop or it can be more consistently permanent. Based on the level of hair loss you are experiencing, it will be easier to determine the root of the problem, so to speak.

Genetics is most often the main cause for hair loss, but many other factors may play a significant part. For example, when men start to lose their hair, it can be triggered by a temporary imbalance in the body or it can be a result of a more long-term health condition such as cancer or lupus.

It’s important to share all symptoms with your doctor and make note of any patterns to provide a complete history of your experience with hair loss. Document when the hair loss began, how much was lost, and if the amount lost increased, decreased, or remained steady. These are the kinds of answers that will help paint a better picture for any medical professional helping your case and providing a diagnosis.

Many times the diagnosis can be based on a temporary medical condition and can be treated immediately. In other instances, there will be more extensive methods recommended.

Below are a few of the following causes of hair loss in men. If you’re experiencing noticeable thinning or hair loss, it’s always a good idea to consult with a physician no matter how minor it might seem.

Increased Stress

Stress affects our bodies in more ways than one. It can lead to restless sleep, weight gain or loss, fatigue, and a number of other different symptoms, including sudden hair loss in men. It’s not as common in men as in women to experience hair loss when stressed, but any type of event that puts extra stress on the body will change the cycle of hair and cause an increase of hair loss during the shedding phase.

Poor Health

If there is unexplained hair loss, there are tests that can be run to cancel out the chance of any number of health conditions. A health screening and blood test can rule out the chance for these types of conditions that may include thyroid disease or anemia.

Significant Hair Loss

A sudden fluctuation in weight can cause extreme stress on the body and result in hair loss. Whether this is due to a strict diet, a lack of protein, or weight loss due to an illness, a familiar side effect of this is hair loss.

Alopecia Areata

This term refers to an autoimmune disease (essentially the body attacks itself). When this condition is present, there will be a sudden hair loss of round patches on the head. Alopecia areata is not contagious and can happen to anyone at any age.

Shedding vs. Hair Loss

Shedding, even if excessive, is not the same as hair loss. There is a cycle that the hair goes through and shedding is the stage that’s most noticeable. Believe it or not, the average person loses up to 100 strands of hair per day, closer to 250 when the hair is washed. Since most men shampoo daily, that’s close to 2,000 strands of hair loss in a week.

Furthermore, one interesting study performed by Baylor College of Medicine found that when men, who show no signs of baldness, comb their for 60 seconds, they lose approximately 10 hairs per minute! They found consistency in this over a three-day period.

Someone experiencing adverse health conditions can experience excessive hair shedding, which may seem to hair loss, due to a variety of causes including:

  • High level of stress;
  • Rapid or significant weight loss; or
  • Recovery from an illness or operation.

After the body has adjusted, excessive shedding will discontinue and hair will regain its normal volume within months. The difference in actual hair loss is that it does not stop on its own, but rather is a progressive condition.

woman with short hair in field

Experiencing Male Pattern Baldness (MPB)

Hair loss is a general term that encompasses several types of hair loss. The most prevalent of these in males in male pattern baldness (MPB). This is a permanent state of hair loss with no regrowth. Its medical term is androgenic alopecia and the condition will affect over half of the male population by the time they reach age 50.

In most cases, men recognize MPB by a receding hairline that begins at the crown of the head and slowly moves back over time until the rest of the hair is gone. In other instances, some men will have a single bald spot at the back of the head. To specifically diagnose MPB, doctors track a man’s hair loss pattern; hence, the name. The Norwood Scale helps men determine what stage of hair loss they’re in so doctors know the proper treatment to recommend.

Hair Loss Diagnosis Basics 

Hair loss for men is more straightforward than it is for women. Nearly 90 percent of hair loss cases in men is due to hereditary male pattern baldness. Men can almost count it as a certainty if other male members of their family have experienced baldness throughout the years.

MPB has no medical side effects. However, baldness can be indicative of a poor reaction in the body to medications, a thyroid condition, and in serious instances, cancer. A doctor will investigate a person’s medical history to rule out such health conditions.

Other disorders may be tested for, if there other conditions or symptoms accompany hair loss, such as rashes, redness, pain, hair breakage, patches of hair loss, or peeling of the scalp. If any of these occur, your doctor may have to perform a skin biopsy or run additional tests.

man with beanie and beard

What to Do About Hair Loss

Hair loss may run in your family, so you might already be prepared to begin losing your hair around a specific age. Know your family’s medical history so you have a better idea of what to expect rather than panicking when the hair becomes thinner and the hairline starts to recede.

Before entering the hair loss phase, it’s best to take good care of the hair you currently have. There’s not much that can fight aging or heredity, but there are ways that can help slow the process or preserve the hair for as long as possible. Follow a healthy diet that incorporates essential vitamins, such as zinc and iron, that are necessary for growth. Deficiencies in these might lead to premature hair loss.

Treat yourself to a scalp massage to help boost the hair follicles by increasing circulation to the scalp. For males who are experiencing thinner hair or have recently begun to experience hair loss, this might help stimulate healthy hair growth.

Some men choose to make a style statement wearing ball caps or hats to hide the bald patches, while others embrace what’s been passed down from their parents or grandparents and accept that eventually, they will go bald.

There is a solution to meet everyone’s need and preference, but what works for one person may not work as well for another. It’s best to have as much information as possible in order to make a good decision.

How to Style Hair When Experiencing Significant Loss

The first thing to avoid is any hairstyle that may pull the hair too tightly. Cornrows and certain hair products that essentially don’t let healthy hair “breathe” will cause inflammation of the follicles, which can lead to scarring.

Hair loss men experience is different than that in women. Women can finagle hundreds of different hairstyles to hide balding patches or to compensate for thinner or thinning hair. Men do not have the same luxury and may have more limited options.

Men who are in the process of losing their hair may try creative hairstyles or specific haircuts to minimize the appearance of balding. Due to its invasive nature, one solution that is typically looked to as a last resort is surgery. Men can talk with a health professional about hair transplants, although there are risks that are associated with the procedure such as rashes, scarring, or an unnatural placement and look of the hair.

bald man in pool

Living with Hair Loss

Every year millions of men go through the process of losing their hair. In order to maintain hair fullness, they must be proactive. That’s where Scalp Med can step in and help.

Scalp Med is product that involves a two-step process designed to stop and reverse hereditary thinning and hair loss. Based on a consumer study, nearly 100% of people said that they experienced remarkable hair growth when using the product correctly.

There are no unwanted sexual side effects as with other products or need for invasive surgery with Scalp Med. It provides a solution to a problem that may have previously seemed irreversible, untreatable, and discouraging. The more consistent the product application, the better the results will be and people will have noticeable results in 4-6 months.

When men experience hair loss, changing dietary habits or alleviating stress may be the necessary solution. However, if the situation is unchanging, it’s a relief to know there’s a product that has be proven to work in other men who know what you’re going through and have found personal success in their own hair regrowth.