How effective are hair loss treatments?

 

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Hair loss treatments throughout the ages have ranged from the ineffectual to the downright daft. From lotions made of animal fat to warming devices designed to be worn on the head, there have been a host of speculative ‘cures’ for this common condition. However, things have moved on and as long as you know what to look for, it’s now possible to find treatments that really do work. If you have male-pattern baldness and you want to halt or even reverse this process, it’s worth considering the following two options.

Propecia

A genetic condition, male-pattern baldness is caused by hair follicles becoming more sensitive to a hormone called dihydrotestosterone (DHT). This results in follicles shrinking, weakening and eventually dying. The most effective treatment for the condition is finasteride, which is better known under the brand name Propecia. Taken in tablet form, this prescription medicine blocks the effects of DHT. In many cases, the treatment slows down hair loss and some people even find it reserves the process. You can get Propecia online from pharmacies or you can access it in high street pharmacy outlets.

Trials have shown that among people aged 18 to 41, Propecia slowed or reversed hair loss in 90 per cent of cases. Around two-thirds of those who take it benefit from hair regrowth and the treatment halts further hair loss in the majority of men who use it. However, it’s important to be aware that it can be several months before positive results are seen and hair loss usually resumes within eight months if the treatment is discontinued.

Minoxidil

Another option is the lotion minoxidil. Applied daily to the scalp, it can also help to slow or reverse the balding process. It’s not known precisely how this treatment works and it is not considered to be as effective as finasteride, but research has found that around half of men who use it experience a slowing of their hair loss, while 15 per cent see some regrowth. Like finasteride, it generally has to be used for a number of months before effects are seen. Also, if the treatment is stopped, hair loss usually resumes.

These two treatments might not cure male-pattern baldness, but they can certainly go a long way to lessening its effects. If you want to find out more about them and discover if they’re right for you, you can do some research online or speak to a doctor or pharmacist.

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