GUIDE TO HAIR LOSS; the causes and solutions.
The most common cause of hair loss in both men and women is androgenetic alopecia, which is genetic pattern hair loss.
Baldness affects most men, eventually. Hereditary factors, hormonal changes, ethnicity, medications and stress levels, all play an important role in leading to hair loss. But don’t despair! Whether it’s thinning or balding hair you are seeking to combat, read this guide and it will help you get that mane back in some (if not all) of its glory!
But first, let’s understand the norm that happens in our body :
Understanding the hair cycle :
Anagen Phase: Active growing phase (85% of hair and lasts 3 – 6 years)
Catagen phase: Growth stops (1 – 5% of hair and lasts 3 weeks)
Telogen phase: Resting phase where hair is getting ready to be shed (10% of hair and lasts up to 4 months)
How much hair loss is normal?
Losing 100 to 150 hairs per day (Cleveland Clinic Journal of Medicine, 2009) is considered by doctors to be normal.
Any increase in the amount of hair loss is much more worrying. Eg. if you used to drop about 10 strands of hair every time you washed your hair, but recently started dropping 30 strands instead. Hence, you should not stress too much about the actual amount of hair that you are losing. Pay closer attention instead to an increase in hair loss over time.
Understanding the types of Hair Loss
I. Androgenetic Alopecia (Male Pattern Hair Loss)
Such hair loss is genetics and driven by Androgen (ie. Testosterone or more specifically DiHydroTestoterone DHT). DHT affects and damages the hair follicles causing thinner hair, decreased hair growth/length and eventually loss of hair.
One is more susceptible to be subjected to Androgenetic Alopecia, if one has a strong family history of hair loss.It is important to recognise this condition early so that preventative medical treatment can be carried out.
II. Female Pattern Hair Loss (FPHL)
FPHL is androgenetic alopecia that occurs in females usually after menopause. Although less common than Male Pattern Hair Loss, approximately 40% of women do experience hair loss by the time they are 50 years of age.
It is a progressive condition although spurts of excessive hair loss may be experienced within a few months. Typically, there is general thinning of the hair and hair loss occurs commonly over the crown of the head.
Treatment is aimed at slowing and stopping the progression via topical and oral medications, and to promote hair growth through machine-based devices.
The following is the classification for FPHL graded with The Ludwig Scale.
III. Alopecia Areata
Caused by your own body cells attacking the hair follicles (autoimmune). This damage to hair follicles result in:
Sudden loss of hair
Expansion of the bald area
The affected area often have a shiny appearance with a smooth surface that is usually devoid of hair or with loosely scattered thin hair.
Regrowth of hair is possible but recurrence may be triggered by:
Traumatic events (physical or psychological)
Treatment is aimed at inhibiting the damage of the hair follicles by your own body cells and include topical, injectable medications and oral medications.
IV. Telogen Effluvium
It is a temporary hair loss in the telogen phase due to an event that has “shocked” the system. The precipitating event could have occurred months before with the loss of hair only occurring at a later stage when new hairs pushes out the telogen hairs.
Precipitating factors include:
Physical trauma (eg. Accidents, surgery)
Sudden loss of weight
Excessive sun exposure
Although temporary in nature, chronic telogen effluvium may sometimes take years before the normal hair cycle is regained.
V. Fungal scalp infections
Fungal infections can damage hair follicles and cause hair loss in the area affected. It is more common in children but can also occur across all ages.
Fungal scalp infections may present as itching, scaling of the scalp and redness over the affected area.
Treatment involves oral medications as well as topical treatment.
VI. Seborrheic Dermatitis / Dandruff
Seborrheic dermatitis is characterised by scaly patches on the scalp, oily skin and sometimes areas of redness and inflammation.
It is often associated with growth of a type of yeast (Malassezia) on the skin.
Treatment involves scalp treatment with medical shampoos, steroids to treat inflammation and in serious cases oral medication.
Understanding the causes of hair loss is utmost important and always best to start treatments early.
Dr Ho Rui Ming believes that tackling hair loss from different angles and pathways is a more effective way so that the current hair can be thickened, slows down the process of hair loss and in the long run, achieve a fuller head of hair.
Our treatments for hair loss are all non-surgical, so it means almost no downtime and perfect for individuals who have tight and busy schedules.
I. REGENERA ACTIVA
Regenera Activa is a US FDA approved treatment and medically researched procedure from Spain which uses autologous micrografts obtained from your own self. This helps to stimulate hair growth, prevent hair loss and thicken/ strengthen existing hair follicles.
When injected into the areas of hair loss, these “micro-grafts” repair and regenerate your scalp.
The result is thicker and stronger hair.
Benefits of Regenera Activa®
- Increase hair growth
- Thicken existing hair
- Stimulate the hair follicles to regrow, and multiply
- Penetration of nutrients to stimulate growth
- Non-surgical procedure
Regenera Activa® is completely natural and safe, with no risk of rejection or allergy.
Step 1 —
Harvest of Micro-Grafts
After local anaesthesia, 3-5 small skin samples (around 2mm) are extracted from the back of your scalp.
Step 2 —
Extraction of Regenerative Cells
The patented Regenera Activa® device extracts 100,000 regenerative cells that have potent regenerative abilities.
Step 3 —
Injection of Regenerative Cells
Regenerative cells are injected into the scalp areas that suffer from hair loss.
Injections points are important to deliver optimal results at areas of greatest hair loss.
Top 5 questions about Regenera Activa
- What Results Can I Expect With Regenera Activa®?
Numerous clinical studies and reviews show improvements in hair density, hair counts and scalp coverage 1 month after Regenera Activa®.
Next, there is improved thickness of existing hair and growth of new hair over the next 12 months.
The latest follow-up research from Europe show that 1 treatment of Regenera Activa® may have results lasting up to 3 years.
Great results are achieved when used in combination with other hair loss treatments.
- Who is it for?
Regenera Activa will greatly benefit individuals of both genders, who wishes to not go through a surgical procedure for hair transplant. Treatment can also be carried out on individuals who are looking to be pregnant, as no side effects are known to occur after. Regenera Activa also provides effective results for individuals who do not require total hair transplant and are experiencing local hair loss only.
3.Can The Regenera Activa Be Combined With Other Hair Treatments?
Regenera Activa can be combined with the use of low-level laser light therapy (LLLT) such as the iGrow home device, hair growth supplements and anti-hair loss shampoos. It is recommended for patients to continue their dosage of DHT-blockers (finasteride) after their Regenera Activa treatment.
4. Any precautions to take note right after the treatment.
Avoid perspiring or any heavy activities as the washing of the scalp / hair should only be commenced after 24 hours post-procedure.
5.Is Regenera compatible with Hair Transplant?
Yes, hair follicles remaining in the recipient area can enjoy the benefits of Regenera Activa treatment.
For more info, view our video : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EII4ys0OSa4
II. PULSED MAGNETIC RADIOFREQUENCY for Hair
With a patented Pulsed Magnetic Radiofrequency technology, waves of Pulsed Magnetic RF are delivered into the scalp to stimulate the hair follicles and improve blood supply to the hair follicles.
This activates the hair follicles to regrow and strengthen resulting in stronger, thicker hair.
This is a US FDA approved device that is backed by years of medical research.
How does it work?
Pulsed Magnetic Radiofrequency energy is precisely directed to the area of hair loss via a probe to stimulate blood circulation and the hair follicles. This activates the hair follicles and results in hair growth, and thicker, stronger hair strands.
What are the benefits of this procedure?
Increase hair growth
Prevent hair fall
Stimulate the hair follicles to regrow, and multiply
For more info, view our video :
III. Thulium-PDRN Hair Regeneration Treatment
A novel treatment for hair loss, this combines the Laser Assisted Delivery technology of the Thulium Laser to deliver PDRN to the hair follicles to encourage hair regrowth.
PDRN is a well-researched product that enhances cell regeneration and promotes healing via purified DNA. Combined with nutrients specifically to promote hair growth, this is a powerful serum that promotes hair growth and thickening.
(Creation of micro-channels by Thulium Laser to ensure deeper penetration of PDRN Hair Growth serum)
The Thulium Laser (via its Laser Assisted Delivery System) creates hundreds of channels into the scalp where the root of the follicles rest.
This enables the PDRN-rich serum to penetrate more deeply into the scalp to nourish and activate the hair follicles beneath.
Without these micro-channels, it is difficult for serums and hair products to penetrate through the scalp to reach the vital hair follicles beneath.
Additionally, this treatment also stimulates blood supply in the scalp to ensure optimum delivery of nutrients to the hair follicles.
The result is thicker, stronger hair with more coverage over the area of hair loss.
- Improvement in scalp condition
- Allow nutrients to be absorbed deeper into the scalp
- Aims to achieve thicker, strong hair
- Addresses hair loss and scalp issues at the cellular level
For more info, view our video :
IV. iGROW Low Level Light Therapy
LLLT is an acronym for Low Level Light Therapy. It uses laser or light energy below a specific energy threshold and within a specific wavelength (approximately 655 nanometers). Light sources used for LLLT may include laser and LED devices. Laser devices used for LLLT are also referred to as cold lasers. LLLT devices produce no heat, are safe and cannot burn or injure the skin.
The iGROW LLLT treatment combines energy from a red laser and LED diodes to stimulate the hair follicles and improve blood circulation in the scalp.
This promotes hair growth that is thicker, fuller and stronger.
Safe and Clinically
The iGrow is not only convenient and affordable, but has proved its effectiveness in two double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trials showing remarkable results of 35-37% more hair in only 16 weeks.
How does it work?
The energy from the red laser and LED diodes are transmitted to the scalp via a helmet-like device.
This is a portable device and treatment can be done in the comfort of your own home.
Hair loss is primarily a genetically-driven condition (also known as Androgenetic Alophecia). As time goes by, this condition deconstructs follicle cells and causes hair to thin progressively until the hair follicle ultimately dies, unable to ever produce again.
In this process a specific wavelength of light is directed on the scalp and a series of complex chemical reactions produce a result that increases terminal hair growth and thickness.
LLLT at a scientifically-established wavelength can re-energize unhealthy follicle cells, and correspondingly stimulate the production of fuller, thicker and healthier hair.
Low-Level Light Therapy has been shown to effectively treat the primary effects of Androgenetic Alopecia (thinning hair) when used consistently. LLLT can effectively suspend hair loss, and helps to thicken thin hair to a fuller, thicker and healthier state.
What are the benefits of this treatment?
Increase hair growth
Prevent hair fall
Stimulate the hair follicles to regrow, and multiply
Easy to use at home or work
For more info :
Apart from treatments, medication and topical application is equally important to stop hair loss. Here is the list of medications which are FDA-approved.
I. Oral Finasteride (Propecia)
Things to know/ what to expect:
Finasteride is highly effective in treating the areas of the scalp not involving the temples. It is more effective over the vertex and superior-frontal region of the scalp. It is ineffective over the temporal and anterior hairline region.
The temples and anterior hairline regions are best treated with a hair transplant.
The recommended dosage is 1mg once daily, taken with or without food.
It has been shown to improve both total and anagen (new) hair counts.
It prevents or slows the progression of male pattern hair loss, and about 2/3 of those taking it experience some improvement.
Effects become noticeable after three to six months, and the improvement peaks around after 12 months.
A common mistake amongst patients is to stop the medication when it “does not seem to be effective” after only one to two months.
Possible side effects:
Loss of libido (sex drive)
Gynaecomastia (growth of breast tissue in men, and nipple swelling)
These are all temporary side effects, and patients usually recover once the medication is stopped.
Rare side effects:
Adverse sexual effects due to Finasteride intake has been reported to last up to 40 months upon cessation. However, results are still inconclusive as to whether Finasteride causes persistent sexual side effects.
Dutasteride is a non-selective 5-AR inhibitor with superior hair growth effects, as compared to Finasteride.
However, side effects are reported to occur more frequently than Finasteride. Thus, it is still mainly used “off-label” in Singapore by doctors who prefer this medication over Finasteride.
III. Topical (spray) Minoxidil
The topical (spray) form is FDA-approved for the treatment of Male Pattern Hair Loss.
The recommended dose is 1 mL applied twice daily on the dry scalp.
For maximum effectiveness, it’s highly recommended to rub Minoxidil into the scalp after application.
However, it is worth noting that you can combine Minoxidil with other treatments to have more prominent hair thickening results!