Though hair loss conditions can affect people at any stage in their life, losing hair is often associated with getting older. So why do so many of us begin to lose our hair as we age?
As we grow older, many things change within our bodies, with the results often being visible on the outside. A little thinning of the hair is only natural, as the follicles that produce these hairs are not as productive as they once were during our youth.
Some people however are predisposed to lose more of their hair than others as they age, and the reasons for this may lie in the individual’s family tree.
Genetic reasons for hair loss
Genetic Hair Loss, or Androgenic Alopecia, is by far the commonest form of hair loss and can be inherited from either your mother or father’s side of the family. It can strike at any point from the early-twenties onwards, but becomes more common with age. Both sexes can suffer from Genetic Hair Loss: in men it is referred to as Male Pattern Baldness, while the female term for the condition is Female Pattern Hair Loss.
The underlying causes of the condition are the same for both gender-specific conditions, but the resulting hair loss is different for men and women. Men tend to experience a receding hair-line and bald patches around the crown. Some men may lose all of their as a result of the condition in time. Women meanwhile often find that their hair undergoes a more subtle and generalised thinning.
What is the reason for Genetic Hair Loss?
The age at which an individual begins suffering from Genetic Hair Loss can vary. It has been estimated that 25% of all men will suffer from Male Pattern Hair Loss by the time they reach 30, while half of all men will have developed the condition by the age of 50. This figure climbs to three-quarters by the ripe old age of 80. Hair loss in women is less common during youth, but in old age the number of women affected is in line with male estimates.
In genetically predisposed individuals, the condition is triggered by production of the enzyme 5-alpha reductase. This enzyme transforms the male hormone testosterone into its much more powerful derivative, dihydrotestosterone (DHT). These high levels of DHT in turn cause the hair follicles to shrink, and so the new hairs that are grown shrink as well. This process can continue until the hairs are so small and fine as to be barely visible, leading to thinning hair and patches which appear virtually bald.
Can age-related hair loss be reversed?
Yes. Provided that the scalp has not become entirely bald and the follicles died off completely, it is possible to prevent further hair loss, and even re-grow lost hair.
At the Belgravia Centre we have successfully treated countless men and women suffering from genetic hair loss. Our hair loss experts treat each case on an individual basis, and determine a treatment programme to suit. We utilise Propecia and Minoxidil, which have both been scientifically proven to treat Genetic Hair Loss and re-grow hair, along with a range of other clinical treatments, trichological monitoring and beneficial hair growth boosters.
To find out more about how we can help you re-grow your hair, please contact us for a consultation, or fill in our online diagnostic form for home-use treatment programme that we can post anywhere in the world.
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