Are you losing hair quickly and probably know some other male friends who are experiencing the same issue?
As you start your research to find possible causes of hair loss in men, the term dihydrotestosterone (DHT) baldness will appear over and over again. It’s a common cause of male pattern baldness and anyone could become its victim!
DHT and Its Connection with Hair Loss
Male pattern balding is one of the most common causes of hair loss, especially as you age. Sex hormones are the underlying factor behind this pattern.
DHT is an androgen, a sex hormone that is responsible for the development of male sex characteristics including body hair. This hormone can make you lose hair faster and earlier. DHT links itself to receptors present on hair follicles and causes them to shrink. Unfortunately, its harms go beyond hair. Abnormally high levels of DHT can contribute to health issues like coronary disease, enlarged prostate and more.
Higher levels of androgens and DHT can shrink the hair follicles and shorten the hair reproduction cycle, causing the hair to become thin, brittle, and fall out faster. Also, this hormone can make it longer for the follicles to grow new hair.
Ways to Treat DHT Baldness
Anyone experiencing hair loss because of this hormone wants one thing only – their hair back! Is it even possible? Let’s learn about DHT and hair loss solution.
Ideally, you should see your dermatologist so that they may examine your hair and recommend a solution. These are some of the treatments dermatologists recommend if DHT baldness is caught early on:
Blockers and Inhibitors
These are oral medications prescribed by the dermatologist. Blockers prevent the DHT hormone from binding to 5-AR receptors present in the hair follicles which cause shrinkage. Inhibitors, on the other hand, reduce the production of DHT in the body.
Finasteride is a popular DHT blocker. It’s a prescription-only drug that binds to the 5-AR proteins and blocks the hormone from binding. As a result, the DHT hormone does not bind to the receptors present on the hair follicles and prevents shrinkage.
Ever heard of pygeum? It’s an herb extracted from the bark of an African cherry tree. It’s available as an herbal supplement. This herb is a natural DHT blocker and is also used for treating an enlarged prostate.
Pumpkin seed oil is another natural DHT blocker that has proven to be effective against male pattern baldness. It has to be taken orally, though.
Caution: Oral DHT blockers should only be taken when prescribed by the dermatologist. Some blockers have documented side effects such as early ejaculation, erectile dysfunction, rash, vomiting, excess fat development around the breast area, and water retention. Should you experience any of these symptoms while you are on blockers, stop the consumption immediately and rush to your dermatologist.
Hair Growth Supplements
Another possible DHT hair loss solution is taking growth supplements like:
It’s primarily a blood pressure medication but when applied to the scalp, it can promote hair growth.
This is a natural source of vitamin B that’s purpose is to help turn food and liquids into energy that can be used by the body.
Another great quality of biotin is its ability to boost and maintain keratin levels. It’s a protein present in hair, skin, and nails. There is a study that suggests biotin can help with hair regrowth and reduce hair fall. So, start taking a biotin supplement. You may also get it from foods like whole-grain and egg yolks.
The benefits of caffeine are hard to ignore. Although very little research exists, it’s believed that caffeine can promote hair growth. It contributes to the production of keratin, extends the growth phase of hair, and makes them longer.
- Vitamin B12 and B6
Hair thinning could also be a sign that your body is deficient in Vitamin B-6 and 12. Take these supplements to make your hair healthier, thicker, and improve blood flow in the follicles. Keep in mind these supplements may not help with restoring the lost hair.
Zinc is highly effective in keeping the oil glands and hair follicles function properly. It also helps with tissue growth and repair. Natural sources of zinc include oysters, pumpkin seeds, spinach, lentils, and beef. Make these foods a part of your diet instead of taking oral supplements. Because hey, who wants to chug so many supplements!
DHT Blocking Foods
If you’re not comfortable with trying medications, then switch to DHT blocking foods. These foods include spinach, kale, mushrooms, tomatoes, carrots, mangoes, watermelons, bananas, legumes, berries, and oily fish. Add these healthy foods to your diet to naturally block DHT and create an environment for hair regrowth.
Don’t forget lifestyle changes go hand-in-hand with taking supplements or DHT blockers. Weight loss is one of the significant lifestyle changes that can help reduce the production of this hormone and minimize its effects on the hair follicles.
Other changes including giving up smoking and regular exercise or yoga to reduce stress, which could be causing scalp inflammation.
The dermatologist might even advise you to stop using hair coloring, treatments, or certain shampoos that contain sulfates that contribute to hair loss.
Low-level laser light therapy does not directly block DHT production but it has shown to promote hair growth in men suffering from male pattern baldness.
According to a study, patients treated with light therapy for 26 weeks experienced an increase in hair density.
Hair loss can be scary especially if it’s set early on. Instead of getting anxious and frustrated, schedule a visit with a dermatologist. They might test your DHT levels by carrying out a saliva test or blood test to identify male pattern baldness. Follow the care and guidance provided by your dermatologist to treat this condition effectively. Don’t try anything on your own.
While your DHT and hair loss solution is in progress, there’s no harm in wearing a toupee until your hair grows back. This will give you newfound confidence and save the embarrassment.