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How Hair Loss Affects Men

Cue-ball. Chrome Dome. Bowling Ball. Baldie.

We've all heard them - the funny nicknames for someone who is balding or completely bald. But for men who are suffering from hair loss, the names are anything but funny.

By age 50, roughly 85 percent of all men suffer from some form of hair loss. Maybe it's just a little thinning here or there, or maybe it's full-on recession of the hairline. And while most men will act as if the hair loss doesn't bother them, the truth is, the majority of men suffering from hair loss would do anything to reverse their losses.

No matter which kind of hair loss you suffer from, there is hope and help available.

Often referred to as "male pattern baldness," the most common type of hair loss among men is androgenic alopecia. It accounts for over 95 percent of all cases of hair loss in men. Androgenetic alopecia is caused by a combination of genetics and hormones. In this type of hair loss, the hair follicle - which is necessary for producing new hair growth - shrinks and ceases hair production. This type of baldness generally starts at the hairline and recedes. The hair will become shorter, thinner and finer on the top and sides of the head, eventually forming a "U" pattern on the head.

While it is true that there are a number of reasons why a person can lose their hair, for most men, the only culprit responsible for their shedding mane is heredity. In cases of inherited hair loss, hair follicles are sensitive to Dihydrotestosterone, also known as DHT. DHT-sensitive hair follicles will shrink, which shortens the lifespan of each hair follicle that is affected. The eventual result is a complete lack of new hair growth.

Other causes of baldness in men include:

The good news is that since the majority of hair-loss cases in men are classified as androgenic alopecia, there are numerous options available. Some 5-alpha-reductase inhibitor drugs, such as Propecia, can be used to help reverse hair loss in cases of androgenic alopecia. Some men also have experienced success with the topical usage of minoxidil, which is available in many over-the-counter products for men.

If all else fails, hair replacement/transplant technology may be another viable option. However, transplants may need to be redone, as they only cover up places where hair already has been lost and do nothing to stop the remaining hair from falling out.

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