Question: I'm losing my hair but there's no reason for it. My dad has all his hair and on my mum's side of the family all the men have pretty decent hairlines but I'm thinning at 25. What could be causing this?
Answer: Hi, Max. You don't give many details here in terms of symptoms, but we're assuming from what you say about thinning hair that you are concerned about potentially having Male Pattern Baldness.
The first thing to know is that the genes involved in hereditary hair loss can come from either side of the family - not just the men on your mother's side. These genes also have to be active for the condition to appear.
It is possible for genetic hair loss to skip a generation - or more than one - if the relevant genes are passed on but remain inactive. For example, if your father's grandfather had Male Pattern Baldness, your father may have inherited the relevant genetic predisposition but it may still be dormant. He could then have passed this on to you, however, in your case it may have become active.
It is common for young men to develop hair loss in their mid-to-late 20s, especially as stress is a key trigger for premature baldness to start, and modern life is riddled with all kinds of stressors - some of which you may not even notice.
Things like dietary deficiencies, underlying illnesses or health issues, regularly not getting enough sleep, smoking and, of course, the usual emotional toll of feeling stressed, can contribute to early onset male hair loss.
Environmental issues have also been identified as contributing to this phenomenon, as they produce something called oxidative stress which two recent clinical studies have linked to Male Pattern Baldness in young men.
Unfortunately this type of hairloss is a genetic lottery and, though many may carry the gene, there are relatively few who will not be affected by the condition.
Luckily, however, there are effective, clinically-proven hair loss treatments which can help address the problem of thinning hair by promoting hair growth and, with long-term use, preventing baldness.
Therefore, if it does turn out that your hair thinning is caused by Male Pattern Baldness, there are MHRA-licensed and FDA-approved options available, as well as a host of additional hair growth supporting products that can be used too.
Depending on whether the hair fall is concentrated on the area affected by Male Pattern Baldness (the vertex of your scalp - the top, from hairline to crown) or all over, there is a chance you could be experiencing a temporary hair loss condition known as Telogen Effluvium.
This causes diffuse thinning from the whole scalp and, although it is much more common in women, it can also present in men with shedding becoming apparent seemingly suddenly but the initial trigger usually occurred around three months prior. It should clear up in six months naturally but dedicated treatment is also possible.
In order to determine the precise hair loss condition you are experiencing, and to receive appropriate recommendations for treatments based on this, we advise having a specialist consultation, either in person, or online using a photo-upload tool.
Whilst it may seem as if there is no reason for your hair loss, we can assure you there will be one - you may just need some professional help in establishing what it is.
The Belgravia Centre is a world-renowned group of a hair loss clinic 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 from anywhere in the world for home-use treatment.
View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which includes the world's largest gallery of hair growth photos and demonstrates the level of success that so many of Belgravia's patients achieve.