The best way to avoid a hair transplant or reduce the number of hair transplant surgeries required is to keep your hair from falling out in the first place. Even after you’ve had a hair transplant, you still want to prevent further loss.
Blame your parents. The vast majority of hair loss is caused by genetic factors and the actions of the hormone DHT, the cause of typical male pattern baldness. Hormonal fluctuations due to pregnancy can also cause hair loss, although it is often temporary. Besides the hormonal causes, there are many other factors that can contribute or cause hair loss.
- Tight hair styles: pulled back, tied-up, corn-rowed or braided. If you are wearing a style that constantly strains and pulls your hair, the follicle can be weakened or broken and the hair can fall out. Many people who have worn a tight hair style for an extended period of time experience permanent hair loss. Excessive bleaching and using harsh styling techniques can also lead to hair damage.
- Turbans: We are seeing more and more men coming to us with hair loss caused by wearing turbans which pull their hair too tightly.
- Illness: There are a number of underlying medical conditions that can trigger hair loss. If you are experiencing sudden, patchy or massive hair loss, or your hair is coming out in clumps, you should seek the advice of a physician. Problems may arise due to glandular issues, auto-immune issues (Alopecia Areata), infections, fevers and skin disorders. Physical or mental shock can also cause hair loss.
- Medications: Patients being treated with Chemotherapy often experience hair loss, and people who regularly take medications for high blood pressure, arthritis, heart issues, cancer or depression may also be impacted.
Fortunately today we don’t have to blindly trust a salesman. There are now decades of data showing that certain types of remedies actually work, and that others do not. Our hair transplant surgeons almost always recommend Propecia, a brand-name Finasteride which is taken orally every day. Finasteride works to prevent the action of DHT in the scalp, which is implicated in common hormonal pattern baldness. The results for many patients is undeniable.
A small percentage of hair transplant patients report side effects (lowered libido) from using propecia. Recent studies show that in the few who experience them, the effects are temporary. The study also shows the percentage of patients who experience effects is comparable to those who were taking a placebo. Additionally, the effects are reversed when the patient stops taking the medication. Propecia is not suitable for women.
Our hair transplant consultants are fond of comparing Propecia to toothpaste: it’s something you do every day to maintain the health and beauty of your hair. Hasson and Wong are not affiliated with the makers of Propecia and experience no financial gain by recommending the product.
Minoxidil is a topical solution in a cream form that is applied up to twice each day. The results from minoxidil use are measurable, but are less robust than results from propecia. Minoxidil is the best available substitute when the patient is unable to take Propecia.