5 Ways to "Regrow" Your Hair Loss, Says Science
Hair loss is a common problem that can affect anyone. While it's more prevalent in men, many women suffer too. There's a wide range of factors that can cause hair loss and while in some instances it's inevitable if genetics play a role, in other cases preventive measures and treatments are available. If you notice more strands of hair on your pillow or brush read on for advice experts told Eat This, Not That! Health about how to regrow hair and other useful information—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had COVID.
Anthony Puopolo, Chief Medical Officer at RexMD reveals, "Scalp massage helps to stimulate hair follicles, as well as to unclog any pores wherein hair follicles may be 'choked.' This process can help revitalize the scalp and increase hair growth."
Puopolo says, "The right vitamins, or substances like biotin can also help stimulate hair growth. These help follicles become stronger, and regrow in places that they may have been lost."
Minoxidil 2% Topical Treatment
Dr. Ken L. Williams Jr., D.O., FISHRS, ABHRS, surgeon and founder of Orange County Hair Restoration in Irvine, CA, and author of Hair Transplant 360 – Follicular Unit Extraction explains, "Once you decide to have medical treatment, the most common medical product prescribed is Minoxidil. Currently, Minoxidil 2% is the only FDA approved treatment for female pattern hair loss. The effectiveness of these medicines varies from person to person, but most women have found using these treatments have made a positive difference in their hair and their self-esteem. Minoxidil was first used in tablet form as a medicine to treat hypertension. It was noticed that patients treated with oral Minoxidil experienced excessive hair growth (hypertrichosis) as a side effect. Further research showed that applying a solution of Minoxidil directly to the scalp could also stimulate hair growth. The amount of Minoxidil absorbed through the skin into the bloodstream is insignificant to cause internal side effects. Minoxidil does not appear to have any anti-androgen effect. In animal studies, the drug does not stimulate testosterone secretion of adrenal androgen secretion. In humans, serum testosterone levels remain unchanged after topical application of Minoxidil. Clinical trials of topical Minoxidil in male and female hair loss show an increase in hair growth, measured by hair counts or hair weight. This increase is apparent within 6–8 weeks of starting treatment and generally peaks by 12–16 weeks. Since Minoxidil does not appear to have either a hormonal or immunosuppressant effect, it is believed Minoxidil induces cell division on epidermal and hair cells. Minoxidil stimulates the hair follicle during the latent part of the Telogen phase to enter the Anagen or growth phase of the hair cycle sooner than normal. Thus the hair cell spends less time in the resting phase and more time in the growth phase. In medical studies, it has been shown that women with diffuse Androgenetic Alopecia can use Minoxidil, and it appears to be more effective for women than men. The manufacturers of Minoxidil recommend women only use the 2% concentration. Minoxidil 5% has not been approved for use by women, but many physicians prescribe Minoxidil 5% for women with Androgenetic Alopecia. Early clinical trials have been conducted on 5% Minoxidil for Androgenetic Alopecia in women showing that indeed the 5% solution is more effective in both retaining and growing hair follicles than the 2% solution."
According to Dr. Jeffery Hsu, M.D. FAAD Founder of Oak Dermatology, "There are supplements that are great for hair, some more effective than others, so tread carefully. I personally recommend Nutrafol to my patients. It's all natural but it has been formulated to target certain hair-thinning causes from the root such as heightened Cortisol levels and balancing certain hormones for women of a certain age."
Platelet-Rich-Plasma (PRP) Injections
Dr. Hsu shares, "Platelet-Rich-Plasma (PRP) Injections is a novel procedure that uses your own blood platelets – a type of cell that helps with healing throughout the body – to potentially reverse hair loss and grow new hair. Improvement in hair health and thickness is possible and has been documented in several peer-reviewed studies."
What Causes Hair Loss
Dr. Hsu states, "There are many types of hair loss, or alopecia, depending on the cause. There are many factors that contribute to hair thinning/ hair loss with age, such as hormone imbalance, stress, postpartum STATE, genetics, underlying health conditions, weight loss and dieting, physical or mental trauma, etc. However, the most commonly seen contributing factors are usually hormone imbalance or stress which manifests as Androgenic Alopecia and Telogen Effluvium, respectively. Most recently we have seen a lot of post COVID hair loss, where patients that have recovered from COVID began to experience hair loss. Post COVID hair loss is very similar to someone experiencing hair loss while in a stressed state or having had psychological trauma. It can be considered as Telogen Effluvium. Another common form of alopecia is alopecia areata, where there is an autoimmune dysregulation, leading to inflammation around the hair follicles and eventually hair loss. Hormonal imbalance happens to women entering in their 30's as their estrogen and progesterone decreases. Which is also similar in women who are in their perimenopausal or menopausal stages. When estrogen and progesterone decrease, androgen levels will increase relatively, which can lead to Androgenic Alopecia."
Symptoms of Hair Loss
William Gaunitz, FWTS, certified trichologist and founder of Advanced Trichology shares, "The most substantial and regular symptom of hair loss is accelerated shedding. Most people do notice increased shedding while they're going through hair loss. Typically, you lose about 150 hairs per day but when you begin to lose hair that rate increases sometimes dramatically. For some people, they will notice hair around the sink, their pillow, their desk, or computer that they didn't typically notice before. That is a sign of increased shedding."
Ryan C. Warner, the Team Wellness Expert and Clinical Psychologist of 1AND1 adds, "A growing bald spot, a receding hairline, and gradual thinning of the hair are some of the signs of hair loss. Generally, hair loss is a gradual and subtle thing. While some time may happen before you notice it in your head, you can look for some other signals. For example, how much hair falls out when you brush it or wash it. Some patients with alopecia have experienced burning or itching sensations in their scalp before starting to lose hair, as well as redness. Hair falling out is a normal process of its growing cycle. However, if it's too much, or if your scalp is experiencing unusual symptoms, you should consult with a dermatologist."
How to Help Prevent Hair Loss
"The best prevention is always keeping a healthy lifestyle," says Dr. Hsu. "Managing stress. Eating a healthy diet and using the right hair products. Making lifestyle adjustments & choices can affect hair loss, such as quitting smoking and eating a diet fortified with vitamin D and Iron, two nutrients that might support hair growth."
Find the Underlying Cause
Gaunitz says, "There is no one-size-fits-all solution. Many people look for a silver bullet for their hair loss and in most scenarios, it's more complicated than just one vitamin or one topical application. People get frustrated because on the first attempt they are not able to solve their hair loss. However, they simply need to peel back the onion and understand which of the core hair loss causes is affecting them, then they can isolate and eliminate that cause."
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