Am I Going Bald? There are 4 Ways to Know if You're Balding
No one wants to talk about it, but you might lose your hair at some point in your life. While balding is typically related to genetics, you can still take action to stop the damage before it’s too late.
Most balding begins when a man notices the receding hairline or thinning hair during their 20s, but some may experience male pattern baldness in their teens or 30s. If you notice these signs and want to protect your hair follicles from more damage, then you should start a hair loss treatment program right away.
Also, nobody wants to talk about it, but women’s hair is a lot more fragile than men’s. The truth is most men will experience some pattern of male pattern baldness in their lifetime. When the balding starts and how much hair we’ll lose is typically based on genetics. The biggest problem with hair loss for men is that the longer we wait, the harder it becomes to reverse the damage. If we don’t do anything about it now, by the time we get old, we may run out of hair because it will be difficult to maintain a large amount of hair. On the other hand, if we start a treatment program right when we first spot a receding hairline or thinning patch, we’ll have a greater chance of holding onto our hair.
Several most common signs of balding are a receding hairline, a gradual thinning of scalp hair, loss of eyebrow or eyelash thickness, thinning of beard hairs, thinning scalp hair, or breakage of hair strands. The sooner you start a treatment plan, the better chance you will treat your thinning hair and maintain a large amount of your hair as you get older.
Below, we’ve listed four signs that you may notice hair loss because of male pattern baldness. We've also provided what you can do to protect your hair follicles from further damage and, in some cases, regrow the hair you’ve lost.
How To Tell If You’re Losing Your Hair
Unlike the flu, male pattern baldness is generally a gradual process. Most men wake up one day to find that they have lost their hair, but like the flu, this process takes months, years, or even decades.
So how can you tell when to take action? The American Academy of Dermatology tells us that these are early signs that your loss might be progressing:
1. You Start to Lose Hair
This sounds self-explanatory, excessive hair shedding is an obvious, common sign of hair loss. However, unfortunately, this common sign is surprisingly easy to overlook because your hair will lose 100 strands every day due to natural hair shedding that occurs as your hairs exit the final phases of the hair growth cycle. The problem is that it’s hard to tell the difference between normal hair loss and the kind of losing that means you’ve entered the balding stage of your life. When you are losing a lot of hair, there will be a lot of it around your home or stuck in your shower drain. So, for example, if you start noticing a lot of hair around the house or are stuck inside the shower drain and you're not entering the balding stage, it might just be time to wash your hair more often and stop pulling so much.
2. You Notice More Hair Shedding
I know, no one likes to think of "shedding," but it's a sign that you’ll want to pay attention to. And sometimes, you’ll stop brushing your hair and notice strands in the sink or on your clothes after getting out of the shower. You might not notice your hair shedding at first, but if you see more hair coming out when you comb it or when you brush it, then you should make a doctor’s appointment. The problem could be something minor like “telogen effluvium,” which is short-term hair loss caused by an event such as surgery, illness or pregnancy. Alternatively, you might have male pattern baldness.
Basically, what we’ve done so far is tell you about the different types of hair loss. But what are some possible causes of these problems? We’ll talk about that and then share some common symptoms of each type. What causes male pattern hair loss? Male pattern hair loss and thinning are caused by a hormone called dihydrotestosterone, or DHT. DHT is linked to high testosterone, and it seeps more into your scalp when you have high levels of it in your blood. Scientists aren’t 100% sure how this happens, but they believe it has to do with cuts in the scalp by a body’s immune system. Basically, this result is that some people might start to see bald patches, especially at the crown (or top) of the scalp. These bald patches are different than a receding hairline -- they can happen even if your hairline has not moved. For some men, this form of hair loss occurs at the crown -- which is the top area on top of their head. This type of hair loss may also expose your scalp to UV rays from the sun, which can lead to sunburn if you spend time outside without protective clothing such as a hat. The most effective treatment for these problems is a topical cream called Minoxidil. Minoxidil has been shown in clinical trials to stimulate hair growth by widening tiny blood vessels that supply oxygen and nutrients to the follicles located on your scalp. The medication increases nitric oxide production, among other mechanisms that don't need to be discussed now. SkinSol’s recommended Root Farm Volume Ampoule is the most popular topical medication for hair loss due to Androgenic Alopecia in men and women.
Male Androgenetic Alopecia, about 25% of men aged 40 to 55 experience hair loss around the temples. Another 31% experience hair thinning across their scalp. If you’re not already balding at your temple, you might start to notice a “crown baldness,” as the name suggests. The head is devoid of any hair, and it can look like a skull. This is because hair loss is not limited to the temples but rather what the book calls vertex baldness. Being bald in this particular area can cause some issues. For example, it might cause you to get sunburned if you are outdoors without a hat on.
3. Random Bald Spots and Pattern Baldness
Male pattern baldness is the most common cause of baldness in men. It may cause a patch of baldness around the crown of the head, which is sometimes referred to as a “bald spot”. Other forms of hair loss can also lead to a couple of patches on your scalp — including alopecia areata, which affects 1 in every 10 people. Alopecia areata is an autoimmune form of hair loss that can lead to round or oval-shaped bald patches on your scalp, as well as scalp band-hair shedding that straps around your scalp. There are both facial and body hair effects, too - you may notice missing hair in your beard area after dealing with alopecia areata. In addition to this type of hair loss, humans may experience telogen effluvium after traumatic events or during periods of severe stress. Telogen is short for "telogen effluvium", which is another name for hair loss that occurs after a period of extreme stress or trauma has been experienced by the sufferer.
4. Your Hair Takes Longer To Grow
Driven by male pattern baldness, one of the effects of this condition is a decrease in hair count. That means it may take a little longer for your hair to grow back to its usual look after a short haircut. So if you’re experiencing any thinning, the worst part is that you won’t be able to fix this with a haircut, in fact, it might get worse. You see, male pattern baldness may also affect your hair thickness. The increase of DHT in your system can lead to irreversible damage to your follicles, eventually resulting in thinning or loss of hair.