Hair loss for most men occurs in their 20’s and 30’s. By the time they’re in their 40’s, they’re bald or almost completely bald. As the internet has become part of our daily lives, many forums and websites have sprung up that purport to give honest medical advice about hair loss. The reality is that they only exist to sell snake-oil products for hair loss that don’t work.
There is a lot of well-intentioned advice being disseminated on these internet websites, which get carried over into the office and become rumors that spread from person to person. We’re here to clear up some of the most common misconceptions about hair loss that are out there so you can get a better understanding of what’s going on with your hair loss – and more importantly, how to treat it.
Baldness Comes from Mom’s Side of the Family
One of the more prevalent myths that has been around for a while is that male pattern baldness is due to a hereditary gene people inherit from the mother’s side of the family.
Adriana Heguy, the director of the Genome Technology Center wrote a blog post that gave a science-backed answer as to how the baldness gene can come from the father’s side just as easily as it can come from the mother’s side of the family.
There is also more than one gene that regulates hair growth. Adriana stated that the genetics of male pattern baldness are not fully understood by medical science.
Stress Will Make You Lose Hair Permanently
The human body can shed anywhere from 50 to 100 hairs a day. This is completely normal as old hairs die and new ones will replace them. However, during periods of stress, some people might undergo excessive hair shedding – to the point of finding clumps of hair in their brushes, on their pillows, or in the shower drain. This is a known medical condition called telogen effluvium.
When the human body undergoes physical or emotional stress, hair follicles will go dormant and not grow. A few months after the stressful period could result in clumps of hair falling out.
The good news is that this is only a temporary thing. It doesn’t usually mean permanent hair loss. If you can get control over your stress your hair could grow back.
Women Love Bald Guys
Just because the latest Hollywood hunk shaved his head for an upcoming movie, doesn’t mean all women are into bald guys. There are many women out there who are not attracted to balding or bald guys. They tend to prefer a full head of hair. A psychological study performed by Upenn revealed that men who have a full head of hair were rated “more attractive” than those who had thinning hair or were bald.
Excessive Usage of Hair gel, and other Products Cause Balding
This rumor has been around since at least the 1950’s. There is no scientific data out there that correlates heavy usage of hair gel and balding. Unless the hair gel has plutonium in it as an ingredient, you can wear as much of it as you like without any worries of hair loss.
Chemicals in Shampoos Will Cause Hair to Fall Out
When you wash your hair in the shower, you might be able to see a few hairs falling out and running down the drain. This rumor probably started when someone noticed this phenomenon and attributed it to his shampoo. The reality is that the human head loses anywhere from 50 to 100 hairs a day, and this is completely natural. There are no known chemicals in over-the-counter shampoo that can cause hair loss.
Baseball Hats Can Lead to Hair Loss
This myth is also 100% false. If it were true, then many Major League Baseball players would be bald. They wear their baseball caps in spring training as well as before and during the game. If anything, wearing a baseball cap could cause your hair to get dirtier if your scalp tends to sweat a lot in hot weather.
e-Cigs Can Prevent Hair Loss
It’s known to science that smoking can contribute to hair loss. The chemicals in the smoke can break down and damage hair. Some people think that by switching to e-Cigs, they can prevent damage to their hair. The problem is that e-cigs are relatively new, and science hasn’t conducted studies on the unique chemicals that e-cigs contain.
It’s Possible to Grow New Hair Follicles Naturally
At this point in time, it’s medically impossible to grow new hair follicles. Scientist might have a break through some day in the future, but for now the best bet is to undergo a hair transplant. A transplant will allow you to regrow your hair where you have lost it prior. If you’d rather try a less invasive procedure, there are plenty of products on the market that can help slow or prevent hair loss.
If you’d like more information on hair loss and the myths and facts that surround it, give us a call at (410) 828-4123 or schedule a consultation to speak to one of our doctors. They’ll help you separate fact from fiction and let you know the options you have available to help treat or fix the balding spot on top of your head.