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HairlossANSWERS - Click to Submit Your Query to Our Hair Loss Experts

Name: Ryan

Question: I was playing football 2 months ago and I got hit by an elbow in my head very badly and a bump appeared after weeks the bump went down and no hair grew at the spot after, now I am wondering if I am experiencing permanent hair loss which I am worrying about because I am very young. Can my hair grow back?

Answer: Hi, Ryan. I am sorry to hear about your accident. I know it is easy to say but do try not to worry about this, especially as it is likely to be a temporary issue.

Next time you watch a Premier League football match, take a look at the players’ hair – you’ll often notice the odd professional footballer sporting a similar bald spot so you’re in good company!

Normal Hair Growth Cycle versus Hair Growth in Alopecia Areata

As you injured the scalp, I advise you to book a consultation with a dermatologist or hair loss specialist who can examine your scalp and discuss whether or not you would require any treatment.

It is possible the accident has caused temporary hair loss due to the injury in the area. The hair may have been pulled somehow, or, if the wound developed a crust during recovery, this may have led to the area losing hair temporarily. If this is the case, new regrowth is usually seen shortly after the skin recovers.

If you have developed Alopecia Areata (AA), characterised by a singular bald spot or multiple rounded, oval patches of hair loss to the scalp, this is slightly more complicated. Again though, the hair is still likely to regrow in most cases, with this occurring naturally within 12 months. There are also Alopecia Areata treatment courses which may help to promote accelerated hair growth, depending on how old you are.

Alopecia Areata is an autoimmune disorder which causes white blood cells to attack the hair follicles, disrupting the hair growth cycle and making them lose their hair. This results in sudden-onset hairloss.

The exact cause of AA is unknown, but it is known to be autoimmune in nature and, therefore, it may not be related to your injury. Common triggers include recent mental and physical stress, dietary deficiencies, infections, and occasionally genetic predisposition.

If the football injury you experienced caused a significant, sudden shock this could be a reason for AA, but as you have found a newly developed bald-looking patch on your scalp, it is worth checking with a dermatologist or, again – depending on your age – a hair loss specialist to get a confirmed diagnosis.

The prognosis of Alopecia Areata is very unpredictable – in some people the patchy hair loss will grow back, whilst in others it may not, or it may grow back then recur at a later date, or it may spread to other areas of the scalp, head or body. However, as I mentioned previously, good hair regrowth is seen in most cases.

Occasionally this new hair may appear white or pale when it first starts growing back, but this is nothing to worry about and generally its normal pigmentation will return later on.

Depending on the severity of the injury, it is worth noting that there is a chance the hair loss may be permanent, too. If there is deep damage of the skin impacting the hair follicles and forming scar tissue, this would mean follicles would no longer be active and would, therefore, be incapable of producing hairs. This is known as scarring alopecia or cicatricial alopecia and causes permanent hair loss due to this destruction of the hair follicles.

This is why it is important to have a consultation with a hair specialist or dermatologist who can examine the area thoroughly and advise you further as to the precise problem and recommend appropriate treatments for the condition based on their findings, your age and medical profile.


The Belgravia Centre

The Belgravia Centre is an organisation specialising in hair growth and hair loss prevention with two clinics and in-house pharmacies in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world’s largest gallery of hair growth comparison photos and demonstrates the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time to arrange a free consultation.

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HairlossANSWERS - Click to Submit Your Query to Our Hair Loss Experts
Under Armour Infrared pillowcase bed linen sheets hair growth hair loss help

Name: Carlton

Question: I read about these infrared pillow cases and sheets from Under Armour that are meant to improve recovery. I understand infrared is also used to treat hair loss so is it likely these pillows could help in to regrow hair loss?

Answer: Hi, Carlton. I have looked into the Under Armour Recover bed linen, which the company claims to be based around a “mineral-lined fabric [which] returns infrared energy to your body to restore your muscles faster” and it is certainly innovative!

I believe it is unlikely to have any ‘treatment’ effect on hair loss – as in, it is help to regrow hair – but it may, however, encourage relaxation. This can be good for helping to prevent shedding from stress-related hair loss.

There are different types of infrared and, whilst some have properties that are beneficial to hair growth, others will have little to no effect on this, whatsoever.

Each wavelength of the electromagnetic spectrum has different properties.

The form of infrared used in hair growth supporting products is known as photobiomodulation or ‘near infrared‘. This is the visible red light type used in low-level laser therapy (LLLT) devices, such as the FDA-cleared HairMax LaserBand, at a wavelength of 655nm. This has been shown to stimulate the hair follicles and the manufacturers advise it can strengthen the hair as well as promoting hair growth and preventing hair loss with on-going use, as directed.

electromagnetic spectrum scale - lllt infrared
Diagram of the Electromagnetic Spectrum

Under Armour Recover pillowcases use far infrared (far IR) radiation; this usually has a slightly longer wavelength and is not the same as LLLT. Far IR radiation gives out warmth which relaxes muscles and soft tissue.

Infrared lamps using far IR do appear to give out red light but this is due to the red lightbulbs they tend to use, which emits visible red light. This is still different to the type of infrared used in LLLT. Pure Far infrared waves are not actually visible to humans, but they are thermal and just feel warm, it is also called “radiant heat”

At Belgravia we employ far IR lamps during certain clinical therapy sessions for clients who visit our hair loss clinics in person, this is for far IR’s ability to increase blood circulation, which may bring more nutrient-rich blood to the dermal papilla. Good circulation is, of course, important for healthy hair growth but it cannot combat the effects of a medical hair loss condition, such as androgenetic alopecia (Male Pattern Baldness) for example.

The innovative products you have read about may certainly have benefits – such as those the company claims regarding assisting rest and recovery for fitness fans, but, in answer to your question as to whether the far IR technology used in the Under Armour Recover pillow cases can stimulate hair growth in order to regrow hair you have already lost, I would say there is not enough evidence to confirm whether this is one of them.

If you are looking for hair restoration options, taking a clinically-proven route involving one or both of the MHRA-licensed and FDA-approved hair loss treatments as part of a personalised course based on your diagnosis, level and pattern of shedding and medical profile would be a more reliable way to proceed.

The first step in this instance is to have a consultation, in person or online using a photo-upload tool, with a hair loss specialist who can assess and diagnose you, as well as providing tailored recommendations based on their findings.


Belgravia Centre Hair Loss Clinic Hair Loss Specialist Free ConsultationThe Belgravia Centre

The Belgravia Centre is an organisation specialising in hair growth and hair loss prevention with two clinics and in-house pharmacies in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world’s largest gallery of hair growth comparison photos and demonstrates the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time to arrange a free consultation.

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HairlossANSWERS - Click to Submit Your Query to Our Hair Loss Experts

Name: Dr. Adiluzzaman

Question: I have adverse effects of hair rebonding. How can I make a rapid recovery? Also how can I prevent further hair loss four days after rebonding. Probably the salon used a relaxer and I am now seeking your valuable advice for further prevention of hair and scalp damage and also other complications. Thanks.

Answer: Hi, Dr. Adiluzzaman. If your scalp is currently healthy and the chemical relaxer did not cause you any burns, there is no specific action necessary for your scalp.

This would suggest it was probably not damaged during the straightening process, also sometimes known as ‘rebonding’ as it involves breaking the hair’s bonds in order to achieve the desired sleek look.

You don’t mention any specific symptoms other than ‘hair and scalp damage’ which we would need more details about in order to address your concerns more thoroughly. However, if you are experiencing any hair loss or notice any skin problems such as a rash or burns (a potential sign of chemical trauma), please contact a local GP or dermatologist who can examine your scalp.

Hair Cuticle Health - Damaged hair v healthy hair diagram - hair breakage

They should then be able to recommend a suitable treatment for your scalp and any additional areas of your head and neck that may be affected, based on their findings.

If your hair was over-processed, you may experience hair breakage. This is where the hair has been weakened and snaps in two along the shaft; it does not affect the follicle. It can, however, make the hair look dry, thin and frazzled.

There is nothing you can do to prevent hair breakage once it has already happened; the best thing to do now would be to have the broken lengths of hair cut off and let new, healthier hair grow out without any further damage. This can be done by a hair-cutting technique known as ‘dusting’ if you are reluctant to lose too much length – your hairdresser should be able to advise you on the best course of action following a consultation.

If you had your hair relaxed by a professional hairdresser, it is unlikely you have experienced over-processing as they would have been trained to use the product in strict accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions. If you are in any doubt as to whether the hairdresser was properly qualified to carry out this type of chemical straightening we recommend speaking to the salon directly.

Your hair may have become over-processed if the relaxer cream was left on for too long, if it was too strong for your hair type, or if your hair was already very weak and brittle before the relaxer was used. However, as mentioned previously, a professional hairdresser would be able to recognise such problems and avoid them.

If none of the above apply to you, I would advise you to keep the hair as healthy as possible from now on.

There are a number of things you can do to help your hair’s health, for example avoiding strong heat such from styling tools including hair straighteners, tongs and even hairdryers. You should ideally avoid other strong forms of chemical hair processing such as perms, relaxers or bleach, particularly if you find your scalp is sensitive or the skin is broken.

We recommend using good quality moisturising haircare products such as shampoo and conditioner as well as leave-in conditioners or bond rebuilding ‘plex’ products to assist the hair’s recovery.

Support your hair health from the inside by feeding it nutrients via a good, balanced diet, including vitamins and minerals known to benefit the scalp and maintain normal hair growth. These include zinc, biotin and selenium and can also be found – alongside a wealth of other key vitamins, minerals, amino acids and botanical extracts – in Belgravia‘s highly-targeted one-a-day food supplement, Hair Vitalics.

In some cases low level laser therapy (LLLT), a red-light treatment delivered via handheld devices such as the FDA-cleared HairMax LaserBand, can also help to strengthen the hair and stimulate the follicles.

As we do not know your exact concerns, it is hard to answer your question exactly but you are welcome to contact us or come in for a consultation, for personalised advice. Otherwise we recommend keeping an eye on your hair and scalp health then, if you notice any problem with either, contact your GP or a dermatologist who can examine the problem area.


Circ - Belgravia Centre Hair Loss Clinics LondonThe Belgravia Centre

The Belgravia Centre is an organisation specialising in hair growth and hair loss prevention with two clinics and in-house pharmacies in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world’s largest gallery of hair growth comparison photos and demonstrates the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time to arrange a free consultation.

Related Stories


HairlossANSWERS - Click to Submit Your Query to Our Hair Loss Experts

Name: Farhan

Question: I had bald spot on my beard 9 months ago I noticed my is coming little bit but growing white not black I’m very upset my hair isn’t growing back black.

Answer: Hi, Farhan. The hair loss you describe sounds like a form of Alopecia Areata – an autoimmune disorder whereby the body attacks its own hair follicles.

The type which specifically affects the beard area is known as Alopecia Barbae.

Although its precise cause has not been established, it can be triggered by various factors such as stress, illness, infection or dietary deficiencies, for example. It may also be idiopathic, meaning the reason it presents is unknown.

Alopecia Areata Barbae - Bald Patches in the Beard
An example of Alopecia Areata of the beard, known as Alopecia Barbae

Researchers have a number of theories as to the cause of autoimmune alopecia, from a genetic link to neurological involvement, but – for now – no concrete pathogenesis or pathophysiology has been uncovered to explain it.

Whilst Alopecia Areata, in its mildest form, causes patchy hair loss in the form of rounded bald spots that appear on the scalp, Alopecia Barbae presents, in most cases, as a small round bald patch around the jaw or chin area.

Normal hair growth tends to resume of its own accord within a few months.

This regrowth can be lacking pigment at the start, appearing cream or white as a result, but its original pre-alopecia colouring often returns as the beard hair keeps growing.

Belgravia specialises in non-invasive hair loss solutions and hair growth supporting products, including Alopecia Areata treatment, however these are only recommended for conditions whereby the scalp is the only area affected.

We do not treat forms of alopecia which affect other areas of the head nor the body – such as Alopecia Totalis and Alopecia Universalis and do not recommend using hair loss treatments intended for topical scalp use, high strength minoxidil, for example, for the treatment of patchy beards.

As you are experiencing facial hair loss I recommend you consult your GP or a dermatologist so they can firstly confirm the diagnosis of Alopecia Barbae, and secondly, check for any other underlying medical conditions. Once they have done this, they should be able to discuss whether any treatment is appropriate and, if so, what is most suited to you based on your medical profile.

If it is only the discolouration of the hair regrowth in your beard that you are concerned about, as before, this should return to normal within a few months, but in the meantime you could consider dying it. That way, if it is done properly, it should blend in with the rest of your facial hair while you wait for its natural colour to return. If you are unsure about doing this, a reputable barber’s which offers this service – often listed as ‘beard grooming’ or ‘beard styling’ – should be able to help you.


Circ - Belgravia Centre Hair Loss Clinics LondonThe Belgravia Centre

The Belgravia Centre is an organisation specialising in hair growth and hair loss prevention with two clinics and in-house pharmacies in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world’s largest gallery of hair growth comparison photos and demonstrates the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time to arrange a free consultation.

Related Stories


HairlossANSWERS - Click to Submit Your Query to Our Hair Loss Experts

Name: Carol

Question: : I am 75 yo female with thin, fine, straight, body-less hair. I use a laser helmet for 20 minutes every other day for the past 5 months. I have had two PRP sessions. I still have areas that are thin and sparse. Since my hair is so flat it accentuates my bald areas. I was thinking of getting a perm to increase a look of fullness. I have been reading and I think an acid perm would be better. What would be your suggestions?

Answer: Hi, Carol. As we are hair loss specialists, we can only give you general advice on which perm is best for your hair.

You would be better off directing your question to a hairdresser with specific experience and expertise in this area, especially as they are likely to need to examine your hair in order to assess its potential responsiveness and suitability.

Older Lady - woman thinning hair female

Whilst perming can be harmful to the hair, causing chemical trauma hair loss, in some cases, we understand the acid perm you mention is supposed to be the least damaging. This is because it should have a pH level similar to that of the hair’s natural pH.

However, because even acid perms have added ingredients to speed up the processing time, these are still not recommended by Belgravia hair loss specialists for anyone with weak, brittle or thinning hair as these additives can change the perming solution’s pH to approximately 7-7.5 which means that it is no longer acidic and may even be alkaline, if it is above a pH 7.

This already risky processing technique is then more likely to cause additional damage, particularly to already weak or thin hair. However, if you do decide to go ahead with this, do make sure it is carried out by an experienced hairdresser who is specially trained in this area.

Acid perms require heat to be added as part of the process, otherwise the acidic pH won’t penetrate the hair’s cortex. With this in mind, there is a risk of thermal trauma, particularly if it is done by someone who does not have the requisite level of specialist training.

Furthermore, perming involves breaking some of the strongest keratin bonds in the hair and will, therefore, change the hair’s keratin structure. When disulphide bonds are broken, there is always a risk of hair breakage, which can cause it to look even thinner and more frazzled, especially if carried out by someone inexperienced.

If you believe you have a particular issue with hair loss, it is worth consulting your doctor or dermatologist in case this is related to an underlying health issue. They may be able to offer you treatment for this problem which may then help your hair growth to return to normal.

Although the platelet-rich plasma (PRP) trend it is having something of a moment, currently no significant, reliable scientific proof exists that suggests PRP can treat hair loss or encourage regrowth.

As you are over the upper limit for non-invasive hair loss treatment, we would recommend sticking with low-level laser therapy (LLLT) but do ensure you are using an FDA-cleared device.

At Belgravia we offer HairMax LaserBand LLLT devices as the company has a good reputation of producing products that have been cleared by the FDA for safety and efficacy, and – as the originators of authorised home-use LLLT devices – have a solid track record in this area.

There are now many products on the market that claim to offer low level laser therapy but, instead of medical grade lasers, use at least some LED lights. These do not treat hair loss or encourage hair growth so it is important to ensure you get the most effective LLLT hair loss solution you possibly can.

Other hair growth supporting products you may want to try include highly-targeted hair supplements, such as Belgravia’s proprietary one-a-day Hair Vitalics for Women. These contain a specially-formulated blend of key vitamins, minerals, amino acids and botanical extracts including biotin, selenium and zinc, known to contribute to the maintenance of normal healthy hair.

There are also a range of cosmetic tricks you could try to make your hair appear temporarily fuller, including using hair loss concealers, or even using dry shampoo on the roots after washing your hair which can give an instant injection of volume to otherwise limp hair.

If you do try this option, remember not to use dry shampoo regularly instead of washing your hair as this may further contribute to hair loss.

As before, it is worth having a chat with your hairdresser as they are likely to be able to recommend styling products, and possibly a new hairstyle, that will help you to hide thinning and make the most of your hair.


Circ - Belgravia Centre Hair Loss Clinics LondonThe Belgravia Centre

The Belgravia Centre is an organisation specialising in hair growth and hair loss prevention with two clinics and in-house pharmacies in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world’s largest gallery of hair growth comparison photos and demonstrates the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time to arrange a free consultation.

Related Stories


HairlossANSWERS - Click to Submit Your Query to Our Hair Loss Experts

Name: Max

Question: : Hello, I did a hair relaxer about 6 months ago and my scalp was severely burned (blisters formed with oozing). I began to notice hair loss at the vertex of my scalp as well as in my hairline and it has been rapidly thinning. Could this be due to the relaxer or is this more male pattern baldness? Both of my parents have a full head of hair but my maternal uncles/grandfather are bald. I am currently on propecia and minoxidil (it’s been 1.5 months and have not seen much results yet).

Male Hair Loss Relaxer Damaged Hair Chemical Trauma from relaxing Afro hair

Answer: Hi, Max. As your scalp was affected by this unpleasant reaction to the relaxer, it could lead to hair loss.

Chemical Trauma hair loss – the name for shedding caused by burns from a relaxing solution, as well as those caused by perming solutions and bleach – can present anywhere across the scalp, depending on the reaction you had.

If the chemical burn caused by your hair relaxer was severe, it may also leave scars across the scalp. In this instance, the burnt areas are unlikely to fully regrow hair and may result in areas of permanent baldness where the follicles have been destroyed. When this happens it is known as Cicatricial Alopecia or ‘scarring hair loss’.

Additionally, you may be experiencing hair breakage from over-processing. This is where weakened hair snaps along the shaft; it is separate to hair loss as it does not affect the follicle. It gives the hair a thin, frazzled look but can usually be dealt with via a haircut – to get rid of the damaged hair – and a course of suitable nourishing, strengthening conditioning treatments.

The signs of hair loss you mention – a thinning crown, vertex (along the top of the scalp) and receding hairline – are all symptomatic of Male Pattern Baldness, too.

If your doctor prescribed you oral finasteride 1mg (Propecia being one of the brand names for this drug), they must have already diagnosed you with Male Pattern Hair Loss as this medication is one of only two treatments – the other being high strength minoxidil – that are clinically-proven for this condition. Neither finasteride 1mg nor minoxidil are used for chemical burns or damaged hair from over-processing.

With regards to not seeing results from hair loss treatment yet, as you have only been using your products for one and a half months, this is normal. Although the timeline varies for everyone – with factors such as how advanced the hair loss was when treatment was started and whether the treatments are used properly and diligently, playing a part – it is usual to see some results from hair loss treatment within the first three-to-six months. This can range from stabilisation of shedding through to thicker, fuller hair and noticeable hair regrowth.

If you have had mild Male Pattern Hair Loss for a while, it is possible that the damage from the relaxer made this thinning more obvious in the last few months. Furthermore, it is entirely possible for both Male Pattern Baldness and Chemical Trauma, Cicatricial Alopecia and/or Hair Breakage to be present simultaneously.

As you can see, there are many variables here so we cannot give you a definitive answer without examining your scalp. I recommend you to visit a dermatologist or hair loss specialist for a consultation to determine the precise diagnosis – or diagnoses – and provide suitable treatment recommendations based on their findings and your medical profile.


The Belgravia Centre

The Belgravia Centre is an organisation specialising in hair growth and hair loss prevention with two clinics and in-house pharmacies in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world’s largest gallery of hair growth comparison photos and demonstrates the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time to arrange a free consultation.

Related Stories


HairlossANSWERS - Click to Submit Your Query to Our Hair Loss Experts

Name: Huan

Question: I am using minoxidil since the past two months but am worried about the wet patch it leaves on my hair at the back (I have a thinning crown MPB) when I use it in the morning. Is there anything I can do about this? Can I blow dry it or towel dry my hair before I leave for work?

Answer: Hi, Huan. From what you say here, it sounds like you may be over-using your treatment or applying it incorrectly.

Applying Minoxidil

We understand you are not a Belgravia patient so the first step would be to speak with your current provider for advice, especially in relation to how you are applying minoxidil to ensure this is being done properly.

Generally, when the appropriate, recommended dose of high strength minoxidil is used, it will absorb into the hair and scalp enough to not be wet, or leave visible traces, such as a wet patch, approximately 30 minutes after application.

We do not know which formulation you are using – we are assuming a liquid or foam – but this should be the case for both types of hair loss solution.

It could be that you may be wasting medication by applying too much to the hair, rather than the scalp – which is where it should be directed. If this is the case, it means you don’t absorb the right amount of minoxidil, and can leave the hair wet-looking, with a white residue that can look like dust or dandruff. This is why we recommend ensuring you are applying the product correctly to the scalp – not the hair – as if you are doing this, it should not change how your hair looks. Your provider should be able to give you a recap on proper application techniques.

If your hair is still significantly wet after half an hour, it indicates you may be using too much, which is problematic as medication – including hair loss treatments – should always be used in the exact doses specified.

Using more than the recommended dose of minoxidil will not help you to see quicker or better hair regrowth results but what it may do is increase your chances of experiencing adverse events.

We certainly would not recommend either blow-drying or towel-drying your hair if it is wet with minoxidil as the former may cause the treatment to evaporate, whilst the latter may cause it to be absorbed by the towel.

If this happens it would reduce the amount of the drug that is absorbed through your scalp, thereby also reducing the potential efficacy of your hairloss treatment.

It may simply be a case of you needing to apply your treatment slightly earlier, so that you allow yourself a full half hour of absorption time before leaving the house, if you are concerned about having a wet crown in public.

For the best chance of having your treatment be as effective as possible and produce hair growth results for your thinning crown, we advise you to monitor how much of the solution you are using.

If you are sure it is the prescribed dosage and are still experiencing issues with wet hair half an hour after application, we recommend speaking to whoever supplies your minoxidil, or seeing a different hair loss specialist for a second opinion as to whether this is the right type of Male Pattern Baldness treatment for you.

You can either arrange to visit a hair loss clinic in person for an assessment, or, if you are based outside London or abroad, an online consultation which allows you to upload photos, is also available and may be more convenient.


The Belgravia Centre

The Belgravia Centre is an organisation specialising in hair growth and hair loss prevention with two clinics and in-house pharmacies in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world’s largest gallery of hair growth comparison photos and demonstrates the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time to arrange a free consultation.

Related Stories


HairlossANSWERS - Click to Submit Your Query to Our Hair Loss Experts

Name: Frank

Question: My dermatologist recommended finasteride as a way to reduce the inflammation from androgens such as DHT (which he believed were causing my scalp dermatitis) as well as reducing my hair loss. However, he did not diagnose me with male hair loss specifically. I have been on finasteride 1 mg for 6 weeks, but have not noticed any change. When can I expect results, and what do I do if finasteride doesn’t work for me? How can I be sure if I am not a responder to finasteride? Could seborrheic dermatitis and sebum be caused by high levels of androgens and DHT?

Hair Loss Consultation Trichocheck at The Belgravia Centre

Answer: Hi, Frank. We would recommend speaking to your dermatologist and asking them to clarify all this for you, as you are their patient and they will have more information, such as your medical profile and their findings from a scalp assessment, to draw their conclusions from.

As you are not a Belgravia client, we can only provide you with general advice, though – as we note you are based in the USA – you are welcome to have an online consultation, which involves uploading photos, if you would like a second opinion with personalised advice.

Finasteride 1mg is clinically-proven for the treatment of Male Pattern Baldness (androgenetic alopecia); it is used to increase hair growth and prevent further hair loss by inhibiting dihydrotestosterone (DHT). This is the hormone responsible for follicular miniaturisation along the top of the scalp, and which can display outwardly as thinning hair and/or a receding hairline.

If your dermatologist prescribed finasteride 1mg in relation to treating a receding hairline, this means they have diagnosed you with Male Pattern Hair Loss.

As before, if you feel your doctor’s treatment plan or diagnosis is unclear, or if you are concerned it is not right for you – as you mention being concerned it may not work – you should contact them for a consultation so they can examine your scalp and answer your questions.

As you say you have only been taking finasteride 1mg once a day for 7 weeks, we would caution that it is simply too early to see any results as it usually takes 3 to 6 months for initial results from hair loss treatment to become apparent.

In relation to your concerns regarding seborrhoeic dermatitis (sebderm), this is a type of eczema that can affect any part on your body rich in sebaceous glands. Typically the scalp is affected but it can also flare up at the sides of your nose, around your eyebrows, sideburns, chest and in any body flexures. It may cause an inflamed and flaky scalp, constant itching, and a build-up of crust on your scalp.

It is a common, chronic skin condition that may present at random intervals over the years, though the severity varies between patients.

Although it flares up on sebaceous skin zones, it does not necessarily mean that you are producing too much sebum. Many patients with sebderm have normal sebum production.

It is thought that sebderm is triggered by an overgrowth of a harmless yeast called Malassaezia furfur that lives on the skin, or an overreaction by the skin’s immune system to this yeast.

seborrhoeic dermatitis sebderm itchy flaky scalp
An example of seborrhoeic dermatitis

There is not enough research to tell us precisely what triggers a flare up and I am unaware of any reliable scientific research linking high levels of DHT to sebderm.

Many patients have reported trigger factors such as stress, illness, a suppressed immune system, tiredness, and cold weather. Some patients even link it to consumption of alcohol and certain foods, but this is very subjective and unproven.

Treatments for sebderm, which usually manage the signs and symptoms, may include:

  • Ketoconazole shampoo may be used to reduce the growth level of the yeast mentioned above;
  • Keratolytic creams containing salicylic acid may be used to remove the scaling and keep the scalp healthy;
  • Anti-dandruff shampoos may be used for the same purpose – these usually contain zinc pyrithione, selenium sulphide or coal tar;
  • Mild steroid creams or ointments may be used to reduce inflammation.

There is no permanent cure for sebderm but it can generally be well managed with the help of your dermatologist.

With regards sebum production, sebum is produced by the sebaceous glands. Overproduction can cause a particularly oily scalp which may also become itchy and inflamed. This may sometimes be associated with acne.

Sebum production is influenced by androgens such as testosterone (of which DHT is a by-product). It is normal for men to produce slightly more sebum than women, which may be the influenced by hormonal changes in the body.

If you believe excessive sebum production is causing you skin problems, on the scalp or elsewhere, you should also discuss this with your dermatologist as these can generally be treated depending on the signs and symptoms.


The Belgravia Centre

The Belgravia Centre is an organisation specialising in hair growth and hair loss prevention with two clinics and in-house pharmacies in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world’s largest gallery of hair growth comparison photos and demonstrates the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time to arrange a free consultation.

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HairlossANSWERS - Click to Submit Your Query to Our Hair Loss Experts

Name: Samuel

Question: I know you can wean yourself off finasteride if you stop taking it but can you wean yourself on to finasteride when you first start taking it by having smaller doses and building up to a full 1mg dose over the course of a few months? Can you do this? Does it help reduce the chance of side effects?

Answer: Hi, Samuel. Firstly, in order to start finasteride 1mg as a treatment for Male Pattern Hair Loss you must have a prescription from a medical professional so we’re assuming you either have done this already, or plan on doing so.

finasteride DHT blocker 1mg mens hair loss treatment tablet

When you speak to your doctor or hair loss specialist about starting finasteride, they will first determine your suitability for this particular treatment, then – if you are found to be medically-suitable – they will advise you of the correct procedure for taking it and answer any queries you have pertaining to its usage.

Finasteride is one of only two MHRA-licensed and FDA-approved Male Pattern Hair Loss treatments and it only has these authorisations at a 1mg per day dose as this was found to be the optimal dose in clinical trials.

It is usually supplied as a 1mg film coated tablet and, in order to take a smaller dose than 1mg, you would need to cut the tablet. Finasteride 1mg tablets should not be cut into smaller doses as the coating helps the DHT-blocking medication to be absorbed gradually.

As with any medication, you should take it exactly as per the instructions provided on the accompanying patient information leaflet, or exactly as your doctor has told you to. In the case of finasteride 1mg, this should be one whole tablet per day.

With regards to whether weaning yourself on to finasteride 1mg can reduce the risk of side effects, this inadvisable action would not necessarily prevent adverse events as, for those who do develop them, they can come on at any time during treatment.

My advice is, if you are prescribed finasteride 1mg, take it at the full 1mg per day dose, as per the instructions, and if you experience any side effects, simply stop taking the medication – there is no need to wean yourself off finasteride unless your doctor specifically advises you to. You should report the problem to your doctor as soon as you can, and look into alternative treatment plans.

As you are not a Belgravia client, this is just general information. However, if you would like personalised advice for Male Pattern baldness hair loss solutions based on your specific level and pattern of shedding, plus your medical profile, please contact us to book a consultation at one of our City of London or Central London hair loss clinics. Alternatively, if you live outside London or abroad, our Online Consultation form, which allows you to upload photos, may be more convenient.


The Belgravia Centre

The Belgravia Centre is an organisation specialising in hair growth and hair loss prevention with two clinics and in-house pharmacies in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world’s largest gallery of hair growth comparison photos and demonstrates the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time to arrange a free consultation.

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HairlossANSWERS - Click to Submit Your Query to Our Hair Loss Experts

Name: Rick

Question: Hi, I noticed recently that around 30% of the hairs I shed are thin and short. I don’t shed a lot of hair but the hairs I shed have different pigmentation. Is this the early sign of MPB? I’m pretty sure I have MPB but based on the above symptom, when do you think I should start taking action? My hair is still thick and my hair line is still good (receding a bit in the right side and miniaturize).

Answer: Hi, Rick. I advise you to start by having a consultation with a hair loss specialist or dermatologist who can thoroughly examine your scalp and hair and provide you with a professional diagnosis.

It is always wise to determine exactly what is causing any hair loss or drop in volume so that a suitable treatment course can then be recommended.

Hair Loss Consultation Trichocheck at The Belgravia Centre

If you do have Male Pattern Baldness (MPB), it is best to start treatment as early as possible. This is a genetic condition which can start any time after puberty in those with the relevant predisposition. It is caused by a male hormone called dihydrotestosterone (DHT) which gradually makes the genetically-predisposed hair follicles to shrink through a process called follicular miniaturisation.

The miniaturised follicles produce increasingly thinning hair over time, then eventually lose the hair completely and the follicles disappear. This is when hair loss turns to permanent baldness; when the follicles reach this stage they are no longer capable of producing healthy hair growth.

Belgravia specialists find that, if you are hoping to prevent baldness, the earlier you start hair loss treatment, the better results you can achieve. Once you lose the hair follicles, and baldness sets in, they cannot regrow hair and it is too late to address the problem.

With regard to the pigmentation issue you mention, the thinner hair strands from the miniaturised follicles may appear lighter in colour. This does not mean that there is any problem with your melanin production – the process by which natural hair colour is determined – they are simply very thin hairs with less bulk in the cortex.

If you look at your vellus hair covering your body, it also appears lighter in colour than the longer hairs on your scalp, known as ‘terminal hair’. However, Male Pattern Hair Loss does not affect the hair pigment.

On the other hand, if there is any pigment change in your hair, it is important to be discussed with a dermatologist as it may be unrelated to the hairloss you mention.

For example, vitiligo is an autoimmune disorder which affects the cells producing melanin, known as melanocytes. This can leave areas on your skin, including the scalp, without any pigment. It can sometimes affect the hair too, but this condition does not cause hairloss.

If you have had Alopecia Areata – an autoimmune disorder which causes patchy hair loss to appear suddenly – the regrowth from this can be lacking pigment and appear white or cream. Again, this is unrelated to Male Pattern Baldness, but it is possible to have both conditions at the same times.

As before, a consultation with a hair expert will help you to determine exactly what is going on, with regards to identifying any hair loss condition and/or scalp issues. Recommendations for suitable treatments or courses of action that can be taken will then be made based on their findings, as well as your medical profile, and they can answer any further queries you may have.


Belgravia Centre Hair Loss Clinic Hair Loss Specialist Free ConsultationThe Belgravia Centre

The Belgravia Centre is an organisation specialising in hair growth and hair loss prevention with two clinics and in-house pharmacies in Central London, UK. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world’s largest gallery of hair growth comparison photos and demonstrates the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time to arrange a free consultation.

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