- Men's Health & Wellness
The Truth About Baldness Remedies
The term "Middle Age" means a lot of different things to men in America. Sports Cars. Fast Boats. Motorbikes. Receding Hairlines... ugh. Going bald isn't quite as glamorous as a fit young blond sitting shotgun next to you in a convertible but it is something that you'll probably have to come to grips with. Few men are able to get to 40 without noticing a bit of horseshoe action upstairs. In fact, many guys start seeing disturbing patterns in high school! So what can fellows do about this problem? Well, there are a TON of different baldness remedies on the market - all claiming miracles. Where the heck is a guy supposed to start? In this article, we'll look at three of the most popular options for curing baldness - Pills, Creams and Surgery.
Before getting on with this though, please note that I'm not a doctor of any kind. Use this article for information only. I encourage you to do a lot of research before jumping into any treatment. There is a ton of info online that can shed a variety of different opinions on baldness remedies. Check them out!
Note, as well, that this article is about treatments for Androgenetic Alopecia. I know this term is mouthful but it basically means "baldness due to genetics". Loss of hair can be caused by a number of different things including diabetes, lupus and dodgy hair dyes. We're discussing the potential cures to hereditary balding here though...
Using Pills To Cure Baldness
The head of a healthy young man loses between 50 and 100 hairs every single day. Luckily for them, hair follicles promptly sprout new hairs, keeping the top of the head nice and thick. Male pattern baldness starts to take hold when these follicles fail. The hairs falling out aren't replaced and thin spots slowly start to appear. Taking pills is one way to keep these follicles healthy. Think of them as protein for the roots that house your hairs.
The most common baldness drug on the market is Propecia. This product was designed for men and should not, under any circumstances, be taken by a women. It's been known to affect the female reproductive system in certain negative ways. Propecia costs between $50 and $80 a month depending on the dosage that you require. According to independent testing, it's fairly effective on about 70% of men. It does a great job of stunting baldness and a decent job of generating new hair growth.
Note that Propecia is a brand name. The drug is actually something called finasteride and is available in generic versions. These are quite a bit cheaper than the designer medicines you see advertised all over the place. They're also available online at fairly reasonable prices. Some men only pay $16 a month for finasteride pills.
Side effects related to these pills are rare. A small percentage of men on finasteride note increased impotence and depression when on the pill. The biggest downfall to using these drugs is the fact that you need to keep on taking them. Any progress you see from Propecia or an equivalent drug will stop when you stop suing the pill.
Using Creams To Cure Baldness
Is there a product that's more synonymous with baldness remedies than this one? These guys have done a heck of job marketing their product. The problem is, it just doesn't work that well! Maybe they should spend a bit less money on advertising, and a bit more on R and D. For the two or three people out there who aren't familiar with this product, here's the lowdown: It's a topical based cream that you apply directly to your head. It works best if you've just started going bald - This means you high school baldies! In a recent study, only 30% of men tested actually said this Rogaine worked well. The remaining 70% were gave the product various marks ranging from "complete crap" to "ok".
Just like Propecia, Rogaine has a generic equivalent called minoxidil. Talk to your doctor for more information. If you want to give this remedy a go, it won't cost you that much money. You're looking at about $10 a month. Not too shabby. Some men do find that Rogaine makes their scalp kind of itchy though.
Surgery - The Ultimate Baldness Remedy
There are quite a few ways to "deal" with being bald. You could shave your head, restyle your hair or even get a wig. If you're the type that just can't stand the lex Luther look, though, read on.
Surgery is becoming a more and more popular way of dealing with baldness. Here's how it works. Remember those hair follicles we spoke of before? This procedure basically involves taking healthy follicles from the back of the head and putting them in the thin areas up front. These follicles are healthy and have the potential to produce hair after hair for years to come. Hair implant surgery is fairly complex though and usually involves grafting about 2000 hair follicles. At $5 a graft, this procedure is also very expensive. Costs usually run in between $10000 and $20000.
If you're going to go this route, you want to make sure you use a reputable surgeon. A list of said doctors can be found at the IAHRS.
Hope this helps you fellows. Love to hear what you think!