Many patients believe that thinning hair is a part of life that cannot be treated. “It’s just something I’ll have to live with,” is a common refrain among men who begin to notice signs of hair loss. The biggest myth surrounding hair loss is that nothing can be done. However, this is not the case. Drs. Edmond Griffin and Ashley Curtis explain the truth behind this and some of the other big hair loss and hair restoration myths in this blog.
MYTH: Frequent use of hats or helmets cause or speed up hair loss.
TRUTH: This notion is merely folklore. Wearing a hat or helmet will not speed up or cause hair loss.
MYTH: Male pattern baldness is inherited from the maternal grandfather.
TRUTH: This is both true and false. Just like with any genetic trait, pattern baldness can be inherited from both the mother’s and the father’s side of the family. Though there are tests to determine the presence of the balding gene, these tests don’t confirm which side of the family gave you the gene or even whether the gene will be expressed in the future. Just because you have the gene doesn’t mean you’ll lose hair more than normal, though it does greatly increase your chances.
MYTH: Using conditioner can prevent baldness.
TRUTH: Because the hair is not a living structure, conditioners merely coat the dead hair shaft making it less prone to breakage. Conditioners have no influence on balding, though. If enough breakage occurs the hair looks thinner.
MYTH: Shampooing daily causes increased shedding.
TRUTH: In general, shampoos clean the hair and do not affect hair growth or loss. To some degree, daily shampooing has been found to show slightly less hair loss by total count than shampooing once weekly. Research shows that shampoos that contains anti-yeast medications seem to slow total monthly hair loss even more (example: Nizoral and DHS with Zinc).
MYTH: Undergoing hair transplant surgery means I no longer need to take preventative measures.
TRUTH: Transplanted hair comes from a donor area that is not affected by genetic hair loss symptoms. This means that it is not affected by the cause of pattern baldness (dihydrotestosterone) and remains in place permanently (pending other factors like chemotherapy and trauma) after transplantation. However, the hair in the balding area that was there before the transplant is still susceptible to pattern baldness. Therefore, preventative measures still need to be taken to maintain those follicles which were not transplanted and are genetically programmed to be lost at some time in the future.
Hair loss is a complicated condition. While pattern baldness is most often the cause of hair loss in men, there are many factors that could be the reason for your thinning. If you suspect your hair may be thinning, visit a dermatologist specializing in hair loss and restoration like those at The Griffin Center of Hair Restoration and Research to determine the cause of your hair loss. With a proper diagnosis, our providers can help you find the best methods of treatment for your situation.