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Types of hair restoration treatments for Male Pattern Baldness
07-22-2015, 11:18 AM
Post: #1
Types of hair restoration treatments for Male Pattern Baldness
In this guide I would like to walk you through the current hair restoration treatments for male pattern baldness. This guide is intended to cut through the snake oil that is so abundant in the hair loss industry and give you the real effective hair restoration methods and treatments that are currently available to balding men. This is a two-part guide and the second part is posted below this post.

Male pattern baldness is a problem for many men and is treated with a variety of methods. In fact, there is much research being done into this problem, as the promise of a high financial return is almost assured. Unfortunately, there is no cure for male pattern baldness, so many men dread the thought of having to wear some form of hair replacement, especially when this can appear to be necessary for the rest of that person’s life.

Below is a description of the hair replacement and restoration methods that are presently available, and some that are still in the research stages.

We would still advise that you seek medical advice, should you suffer from hair loss, before seeking other means of hair replacement. This is to ensure that the hair loss is "natural", and not caused by some other medical problem.

Wigs and hairpieces have been on the marked now for hundreds of years, and where (and still are), in many cultures a necessary part of the daily attire, even for those who would not be regarded as suffering from any form of hair loss. The manufacturing of such items has now reached the point where many are no longer recognizable when worn, as being such. There are wigs available, made from real hair, and man-made hair, costing anything from under $50 to over $1000.

When reliant on a wig, you are also aware that it is not the same as having your own hair, and for that reason, a strong wind or someone touching the hair can cause a panic reaction. There is also the ever-present problem of having to remove the wig every evening, turning the perfectly groomed male into someone with a hair loss problem. Many who do not need to wear such items, cannot imagine the problems with having to wear a wig in every type of weather, or the restrictions placed on those who have no other option.

For these (and other) reasons, other methods are actively sought. However, many people do wear wigs, and as a solution to the problems of hair loss, they are often the first item purchased until (or indeed, if), another solution becomes available.

Hair Weaving:
In hair weaving, a piece of hair (normally real hair) is woven into your own hair, giving a style that is almost the same as that of your own hair. Indeed you can wash, dry and style the woven hair just as if it were your own.
The fact that the woven hair is tied to your own hair, and that this will grow, means that it will have to be re-tied every 4 weeks or so. At the same time, the hair must be re-styled in order to give a natural looking style.

The biggest problem with hair weaving is the high price. The cost of this can vary between $600 and $2000 depending on the length and quality of the hair. The high price is because of the hair quality and the method of weaving. Hair weaving is very useful in the mid-stages of the Norwood scale for balding men, although it can also be used for fully bald males.

A note of warning should be given here regarding people offering this method. If it is not carried out by an experienced and qualified person an incorrect weave can cause such pain that the woven hair must be cut out along with your own hair. With the cost of special hair shampoos and other hair loss products like minoxidil and plus the cost of the hair piece(s), the average monthly cost of this method can be approximately $150 (average life of a hairpiece is 1 year).

Hair growth treatments:
There are many adverts offering hair restoration creams, gels, lotions and even water! Unfortunately, nearly all these products have no effect, or at best only slow the rate of hair loss. There are two notable exceptions to this.

One is finasteride (also known as Propecia) which can help to restore the hair, providing the hair loss is male pattern baldness, and is not caused by a medical problem. (It has been known for hair "lost" over 10 years before to re-grow.) Finasteride is the most powerful hair loss medication at the moment but it can have some severe side effects like depression, impotence and loss of libido. Another medication known as dutasteride is being researched fully to provide a hair loss medication that has all the benefits of finasteride without its side effects. Finasteride is only prescribed by doctors so you must always visit your doctor prior to jumping on finasteride.

The other exception is minoxidil, which is also known as Rogaine, Regaine and other names (these are the brands of minoxidil products). By external use this works only on the treated area, and is available to buy over the counter without a prescription and at places like Amazon (this forum recommends some excellent sources of low cost minoxidil and Rogaine in the previous link to a hair loss discussion - here's the link again).

In any case the results of these methods, do take time, and it can be a long time before you are able to make a hairstyle out of the re-grown hair. Hair follicles that have completely died and miniaturized cannot naturally re-grow so it's important to use minoxidil or finasteride as soon as you suspect that you're balding.
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07-22-2015, 11:19 AM
Post: #2
RE: Types of hair restoration treatments for Male Pattern Baldness
Hair transplants:
With hair transplants, the hair is removed from one area, and transplanted into another area of the scalp. In androgenetic alopecia (another name for male pattern baldness), hair loss is usually above the temples and on the crown. The sides and back of the head are rarely affected.
Traditional methods of hair transplantation normally involve the following methods:
  • Skin strip transplantation: complete strips of skin (with hair) are transplanted.
  • Mini-Graft Transplantation: pieces of skin with 3 to 8 hair roots are transplanted.
  • Micro-Graft Transplantation: pieces of skin with 3 or fewer hair roots are transplanted.
A transplantation of your own hair is only possible when the area to be covered is not too large. As it is your own hair that is transplanted to another area, there is obviously a limit to the amount of hair strands that can be practically transplanted. Disadvantages of these methods are:
  • The initial high cost.
  • The problems with obtaining a satisfactory result.
  • Obtaining satisfactory hair density (number of hairs per square inch) and hair thickness.
  • Scarring of the area in which the donor hair was removed.
You must first remember that initially the transplanted hair will fall out, and that a significant period of time will pass before the hair will re-grow to a sufficient length that you can actually style the hair. In addition, the donor area will be visible until this also heals.

There are alternative methods of hair transplantation available, one of which is known as "direct hair implant", also known as FUE (Follicular Unit Extraction). This is a non-invasive method of hair transplantation, which avoids the need for a strip of donor skin to be removed from the back of the head.

Other hair loss solutions for men:
Research is still being carried out into the cloning of one's own hair, thus making it possible to transplant larger areas. The first results of this are very promising: the main problem being the number of cloned hairs that actually grow, which so far is less that 50% (this is the target market for all such research).

There is still much research being done into minoxidil, and providing that your hair loss is not too severe, this product could be of help to you. Derivatives of minoxidil that re-activate new hair follicles or dormant hair follicles are also starting to come onto the market but there's still a long way ahead to be able to come with a better solution to what we have and finally find a cure for male pattern baldness.
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08-03-2015, 07:23 PM
Post: #3
RE: Types of hair restoration treatments for Male Pattern Baldness
Hair transplants? Is it worth it? I know it costs a lot. But is it worth the money?
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