Hair Loss Explained – Part 1
What Causes Hair Loss?
A primer on hair loss for Bellevue Seattle
hair restoration patients of The Stern Center
What’s the old wives tale? If your mother’s father had a full head of hair you’ll never go bald? If only!
Unfortunately, you can inherit male patterned hair loss from your mother and father’s side of the family. In men, hair loss is typically caused by the hair follicles susceptibility to a chemical in the body called dihydrotestosterone, or DHT.
DHT, which is derived from the male hormone testosterone, causes hair follicles to shrink and eventually stop producing hair; leading to male pattern baldness (androgenetic alopecia). This hair loss may begin any time after puberty when blood levels of androgens rise.
Men often notice the onset of male pattern hair loss between the ages of 20 and 45. But it can begin much earlier and often progresses over the years.
Women are also Affected by Hair Loss
While most people think of pattern hair loss as a male problem, women are also susceptible to genetic hair loss. Hair loss in women can also be attributed to medical condidtions such as thyroid disease, iron deficiency or dermatalogic diseases of the scalp.
More information with hair loss
Typically the first signs of male pattern hair loss is recession in the temporal areas (receding hairline), which is seen in 96 percent of mature Caucasian males, including those men who may not show any further hair loss. In fact, it’s estimated that approximately 50 percent of men over 40 have some degree of male pattern hair loss.
In general, men who begin losing their hair in their 20’s often exhibit the most severe balding. Often, initial male-pattern hair loss may be delayed until the late 30’s or 40’s. It is generally recognized that men in their 20’s have a 20 percent incidence of male pattern baldness, in their 30’s a 30 percent incidence of male pattern baldness, in their 40’s a 40 percent incidence of male pattern baldness, etc. Using these numbers you can see that a 90 year old man has a 90 percent chance of having some degree of male pattern baldness.