Hair Loss in Men
A normal head of hair consists of 100,000-150,000 hairs and daily hair loss of 50-100 hairs is a natural and normal part of everyday life. If, however, you are losing more than this you could probably be classified as experiencing excessive hair loss. Excessive hair loss for six months is considered severe and may result in temporary or permanent, total or partial loss of scalp hair.
The most common type of male hair loss which is responsible for 85-90% of temporary and permanent hair thinning and baldness is a condition known as Androgen Alopecia.
Androgens are hormones responsible for developing masculine characteristics and for various bodily functions, among them hair growth. Androgen Alopecia is a genetic predisposition in which the androgens shorten the growth cycle of scalp hair follicles. It probably occurs, to some degree, in all men sometime after puberty. However, normally thinning hair is not noticed until the late teens or early twenties.
To understand how our clinically-proven Therapro MEDIceuticals® Thinning Hair Solutions can help break this cycle we first need to understand the three stages of hair growth as they normally occur in men.
The Three Stages Of Hair Growth
- Anagen Stage: This is the most important phase in the hair's growth cycle. It is the growing or active phase and it varies for each individual, lasting from 2-6 years, with hairs growing 1/4 – 1/2 an inch per month. Hair regrowth will continue as long as the Derma Papilla (the group of cells directly below the hair follicle) continue to supply the glucose that the follicle needs for energy and to produce the amino acids that allow the body to grow new hair. Each hair follicle cycles 10-20 times in a lifetime.
- Catagen Stage: This is the regressive or resting period when there is no active hair growth. This is the stage in which the hair follicle starts to degenerate. This stage lasts 1-2 weeks.
- Telogen Stage: During this phase, which lasts 5-6 weeks, capillaries supplying essential growth elements to the hair follicle become inactive causing the hair to be shed. As a new hair begins to grow to replace it the hair follicle re-enters the Anagen Phase.
At any given time, 90% of a healthy head of hair will be in the Anagen or growth phase and 10% in the Catagen/Telogen phase.
In men predisposed to androgen alopecia, testosterone forms a powerful destructive androgen hormone, Dihydrotestosterone (DHT), as it reacts with 5-alpha reductase enzymes. The DHT binds to the hair follicle and progressively shortens the anagen phase, reducing the length of the hair growth period. It is this shortened cycle that over time can lead to hair thinning and baldness.
Other causes of Alopecia
Vascular Alopecia: Blood is the source of nutrients and oxygen essential for metabolizing hair cells. If this blood supply is compromised in some way, the hair follicle does not get the nutrients and energy it needs for hair growth.
Nutritional Deficiencies: Excessive hair loss is often observed in the malnourished and those affected by sudden weight loss, bulimia and anorexia. In addition, deficiencies in zinc and iron may exacerbate thinning hair.
Medications: Use of over the counter and prescription drugs as well as the misuse of vitamins are perhaps the most overlooked causes of hair loss.
Medical Problems: Excessive hair loss is associated with several diseases and medical disorders. In fact, excessive hair loss may be the only symptom of low thyroid function (hypothyroidism).
Psychological Stress is another common cause of hair loss.
Keeping your scalp and hair healthy and well supplied with nutrients is key to minimizing hair loss and maximizing hair longevity. This is where our clinically-proven Therapro MEDIceuticals® Thinning Hair Solutions range of products can provide crucial support.