10 Myths About Hair Loss
More than 50 percent of men over the age of 50 have some form of hair loss but did you know that 40% of hair loss sufferers are actually women? The hair loss industry worth a whopping $3.5 billion but unfortunately, many hair loss solutions just don’t work. So here’s the hard science to expose the myths, truths, and important information you should know about what you can actually do to keep (or get back) your hair.
Genes for hair loss come only from the mother’s side of the family
Fact: Although the inheritance from the mother’s side is slightly stronger, androgenetic hair loss (common baldness) can be inherited from the mother’s side of the family, the father’s side or both.
Men who are bald have high levels of testosterone
Fact: This myth falls into the same category as the “size of a man’s hands or feet…” Hair loss is caused by an increased sensitivity to the hormone DHT in the hair follicles. Testosterone is converted to DHT by specific enzymes. About 5% of free testosterone is normally converted into DHT. DHT causes hair follicles to shrink or miniaturize and causes the shaft of the hair to become thinner and thinner with each cycle of growth. Eventually, normal hairs are reduced to villus hairs, the light hairs that cover a baby.
A sign of genetic baldness is seeing large amounts of hair fall out
Fact: In contrast to popular belief, going bald is not due to massive amounts of hair falling out, but rather by hair of normal thickness gradually being replaced by finer, thinner hairs -– a process called “miniaturization.” If large patches of hair start suddenly falling out, it is time to see your doctor. Read about how androgenetic alopecia, or genetic hair loss, is diagnosed.
Laser Therapy Grows Hair Overnight
Fact: While Laser therapy has been proven effective in over 90% of users in clinical trials, Low Level Laser Therapy (LLLT) doesn’t work overnight. The typical user will begin to experience new hair growth beginning in three to five months. This is because of the natural cycle that the hair follicle goes through as it regenerates and begins to grow hair. Once the regrowth started, clinical trial participants grew on average 129 new hairs per square inch, that’s thousands of new hairs over the entire scalp! Learn more about the top laser hair growth devices here.
Hair loss is caused by clogged pores
Fact: Clogged pores are actually a cause of acne, not of baldness. Hair follicles and skin pores are not the same. It is important to keep the hair follicles clean and clear so that newer stronger hairs can begin to grow. Use a gentle shampoo to cleanse your hair. One without the harsh sulfates and a lower pH, that can exfoliates your scalp and remove the build-up of sebum from styling products and environmental pollutants. Also look for one containing DHT blockers, anti-oxidants and therapeutic botanicals to restore balance, optimize scalp. See hair and scalp treatments that work.
Wearing a hat makes you go bald
Fact: People who accuse their hats as being the cause of their hair loss think that wearing hats all the time prevents the scalp from breathing. Actually, hair follicles get oxygen from the blood stream, not from the air.
Frequent shampooing causes hair to fall out
Fact: When people start to thin they sometimes think that shampooing is the cause, since they notice hair in the tub. To prevent this, they begin to shampoo less often. The hair that would normally come out in the shower now builds up on the scalp. With the next shampoo, even more ends up in the tub only confirming the patient’s suspicion. Remember, hereditary baldness is not due to hair falling out, but rather by normal hair gradually being replaced by finer, thinner hairs.
Only men suffer from genetic hair loss
Fact: Balding is often thought of as a “man’s” problem, but the fact is that over 40% of women suffer from significant thinning throughout their lifetime. Read about the causes, diagnosis, and treatment of hair loss in women. Read about women’s hair loss issues here.
Hair loss stops when you get older
Fact: Once hair loss begins, it tends to progress over a person’s lifetime and never completely stops. However, the rate at which hair will continue to fall out is hard to guess. View the chart below to see how the incidence of male pattern baldness increases with a person’s age, particularly how advanced baldness increases well past the age of 60. It is worth mentioning here that the younger you are when you start to lose your hair, the more likely you are to become very bald so starting a treatment plan early can be the best defense against complete baldness later in life!
Hair loss is caused by decreased blood flow to the scalp
Fact: When your hair is growing, it does require a significant amount of blood flow. Once you lose your hair, not as much blood is needed and the blood flow to the scalp decreases. Therefore, a decreased blood flow to the scalp is not the cause of hair loss, but a result of it.