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Androgenetic Alopecia: A Detailed Walkthrough

Androgenetic alopecia is a genetic abnormal condition in which there is a specific pattern of hair loss. It can occur both in men as well as in women. In men, it can cause complete baldness.

Androgenetic alopecia causes baldness mostly in the front and in the crown regions. In males, androgenetic alopecia is also known as male pattern baldness.

In the case of women, it causes overall thinning of hair and is also known as female pattern baldness.

Androgenetic alopecia is a very common condition and can start at a very early age. It is more common in men than in women and its risk increases with aging.

Many medical conditions can cause androgenetic alopecia including prostate cancer, diabetes type 2 in men, and PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome) in females.

This article will tell you all about male and female pattern baldness so read it out.

Male Pattern Baldness

Male pattern baldness refers to the specific pattern of hair loss in men. It can begin at any age and starts from the thinning of hairs in the hairline. Hair loss occurs mainly in the temporal regions of the hairline giving the hairline the appearance of “M”. Thereafter hair starts thinning in the crown region of the head. The hairs on the side of the head are the last ones to be lost in the male pattern baldness. Male pattern baldness can cause complete baldness in men.

Female Pattern Baldness

In female’s hair growth slows down markedly, hair follicles reduce, hair loss increases. Women with female pattern baldness experience overall thinning and easy breakage of hair. There is no specific pattern of hair loss as seen in men. Female pattern baldness doesn’t cause complete baldness of the scalp in women.

What are the Causes of Androgenetic Alopecia?

Androgenetic alopecia is mainly causing by a complex relationship between genes and hormones. The hormone that is involved in androgenetic alopecia is “dihydrotestosterone” which is the active form of testosterone. Greater amounts of this hormone are present in males as compared to females which explains the early beginning of baldness in males. This hormone causes the scalp hair to grow slowly, break more and shrink hair follicles.

    • Age plays an important role in male and female pattern baldness. With increasing age, you are more likely to become bald because of the increasing levels of dihydrotestosterone in both males and females.
    • Genes are also a cause of male pattern baldness. People with a family history of baldness may experience male pattern baldness in their twenties and thirties. Oppositely individuals which do not have a family history may experience it in their 50s or 70s. Obesity, diabetes type 2, prostate cancer, etc. can also cause male pattern baldness.

Female pattern baldness before menopause can be caused by an abnormal condition that causes androgens i.e., dihydrotestosterone to increase. These conditions include an androgen-secreting tumor, PCOS, and many others.

But female pattern baldness after menopause is a common condition among women. Hormonal imbalances cause this menopause hair loss. So, women mainly experience female pattern baldness in their 50s or 60s.

Is Androgenetic Alopecia Permanent?

 Androgenetic alopecia causes permanent hair loss and baldness because it damages the hair follicles in the scalp. Hair follicles are responsible for the growth, maintenance, and nutrition of hairs. But treating androgenetic alopecia in the early stages can decrease hair loss and prevent baldness.

Treatment of Androgenetic Alopecia

Many different pills and medications are available for both males and females that can decrease the symptoms of androgenetic alopecia. Your physician will suggest various drugs. Some increase hair growth and some decrease hair loss.

    • An enzyme “5 alpha-reductase” in the cells converts the inactive testosterone to dihydrotestosterone. By blocking this enzyme, we can decrease the activity of the hormone that causes androgenetic alopecia resulting in a decrease in hair fall and baldness. Finasteride, dutasteride, and much more similar drugs are prescribed to treat androgenetic alopecia in this way.
    • Drugs that promote hair growth can decrease the severity of symptoms of male and female pattern baldness. Minoxidil is the most given drug to promote hair growth although its action is unclear.
    • Agents that block the receptor for androgens so that they can’t attach to cells make the cell incapable to respond to the hormone. So, hormones can’t cause its effect to cause make and female pattern hair loss. Spironolactone includes this category of drug.
    • Other treatments of androgenetic alopecia include Low-level Laser Therapy in which light or a specific wavelength is given to the scalp which causes hair growth. A hair transplant is the last option to treat me and female pattern baldness.

How to Treat Male and Female Pattern Baldness Naturally?

Treating male and female pattern baldness naturally in the early stages can save you from a lot of difficulties and problems. Having a balanced diet is one of the natural ways to stop hair fall and it has proved to decrease the risk of male and female pattern baldness. All the vitamins and minerals needed for hair growth and nutrition must include our diet. 

Having vegetables like carrot, pumpkin, red clover, etc. in the diet can boost hair growth and reduce hair fall. Carrots especially contain beta carotene which is very helpful for hair growth.

We should include all the foods that contain vitamin D and selenium which are important for hair growth. Fatty fishes for example salmon and tuna are rich in vitamin D and selenium. Zinc requires healthy hair and foodstuffs like oysters are important in our diet. Other vitamins like biotin, B12, and folic acid promote hair growth. 

Platelet-rich Plasma Therapy (PRP) is a technique in which the doctor injects your plasma back into your scalp. This treatment promotes hair growth tremendously so it is included in natural ways to treat male and female pattern baldness.

A Few Takeaways

Androgenetic alopecia is also known as male and female pattern baldness. It is caused mainly by abnormal interaction between genes and hormones. Many factors can increase the risk of androgenetic alopecia like blood pressure, diabetes, prostate cancer in males.

Menopause is the most common cause of female pattern baldness. Although it is a form of permanent hair loss, it is treatable in its early stages. It is treated in many ways including using drugs, different surgical procedures, and various natural ways as well.

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