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Terminal and Vellus Hairs: What’s The Difference for Hair Loss?

vellus hair terminal hair diagramWhen it comes down to the hair on our heads, there are two main types: vellus, and terminal. In order to understand the treatment process for male pattern hair loss, which sees thin, ‘wispy’ hairs regrown as thick, healthy looking hair, it’s important to know the difference between the two hair types.

Vellus Hair

Vellus hairs are short, fine, lightly-coloured hairs that develops on a large percentage of a person’s body as a child. The word vellus comes from the latin vellus to designate a fleece or wool, and work to cool or heat up the body, regulating body temperature. Length-wise, vellus hairs tend to be slightly shorter than half a centimetre.

Terminal Hair

Terminal hairs are thick, long, darker hair, or what we would usually count as ‘scalp hair’. In men with male pattern baldness, a medically proven hair loss treatment plan is required in order to have a chance of regrowing terminal hair when it has ceased to grow naturally on account of the hormone DHT.

DHT is a naturally occurring androgen, formed when testosterone comes into contact with the enzyme 5-alpha reductase. Once the process of pattern hair loss begins in those with an inherited predisposition, treatment is essential to prevent hair atop the scalp becoming progressively thinner as less and less terminal hair is grown, leading to the ‘peach fuzz’ effect. Hair then becomes thinner and thinner, until eventually no more hair is grown. At this point the hair loss becomes medically untreatable.

So, if you’re noticing that more and more of your hair is growing as the vellus type, it’s likely that you’re experiencing male pattern hair loss. Four in seven of us inherit the predisposition for pattern balding, and it can begin at any point after puberty. A combined hair loss treatment plan that contains the two medications licensed or approved by the UK and US medical regulatory bodies, the MHRA and the FDA respectively, can halt hair loss and regrow terminal hair where it has ceased to grow, providing there is still some manner of hair growth on the area you wish to treat.

How To Treat The Hair Loss

The first medication, Propecia, works by blocking DHT. This should halt the rate of thinning and can potentially allow for thicker regrowth. Propecia is highly complementary when used with the second proven medication, the topical treatment minoxidil.

Minoxidil comes in a variety of strengths, so after a hair loss specialist has assessed your individual case, the optimum daily dosage for your condition can be compiled. For stubborn cases of hair loss, a high strength minoxidil cream containing azelaic acid, which appears to block DHT when applied locally, has achieved strong regrowth results.

For treating male pattern hair loss, the above medications combined with a variety of treatment boosters offers the best all round treatment plan. From the FDA cleared LaserComb to the nutritional supplement Hair Vitalics, a comprehensive plan ensures that the regrown terminal hairs are maintained and nurtured.

The Belgravia Centre—————————————————————————————————–

The Belgravia Centre is the leader in hair loss treatment in the UK, with two clinics based in Central London. We offer clinically proven treatments for hair loss, as part of comprehensive treatment programmes offered by our hair loss specialists. Our in-house pharmacies produce high-strength medications for hair loss that contain medically proven ingredients and are available at no other clinic worldwide. Treatment programmes are available by visiting the centres or for home-use, anywhere in the UK or the rest of the world. View our hair loss success stories, which are the largest collection of such success stories in the world and demonstrate the levels of hair regrowth that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 0800 077 6666 for our hair loss helpline or to arrange a free consultation.

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