Male-pattern baldness is a common ailment affecting as much as 50 percent of all men by the time they reach 50 years of age, according to ScienceDaily.com. Many men find baldness to be an embarrassing and uncomfortable experience and seek remedies to cover up the loss of hair. These fixes include wearing hats more frequently, using comb-overs to hide bald spots and wearing wigs or toupees to completely obscure any hair loss. But new treatment methods have made it possible to men to actually regrow their natural hair.
Two types of medications have been made to stop hair loss and encourage the development of new hair follicles. One of them, minoxidil, is to be applied topically every day and can yield new hair growth within 12 weeks, although the new hair may be thinner than the original hair and may not grow to the same lengths. The medication is applied as a liquid foam and applied to the scalp twice daily, much like a shampoo. Finasteride is an oral medication that is taken daily as a pill. Several months may pass before results develop. It works by inhibiting the conversion of testosterone into a hormone that constricts hair follicles and prevents hair growth. Like minoxidil, finasteride’s effect wears off quickly after its use is discontinued. While other medications are currently in development, none of them are available for public use as of 2010.
Some individuals choose to transplant hair from another part of the body onto the patches of the scalp where hair growth has diminished. This process requires hair plugs from the sides and back of your scalp and can be a permanent solution, although there are potential side effects associated with transplants. Most notable of these is the new hair’s inability to blend evenly with the surrounding hair—because it is from a different part of your head, it may have a different look or texture that will make the new hair stand out and appear unappealing. You may also require several hair transplants over time as your hair line recedes and requires new hair to be transplanted.
Scalp reductions are minor surgical procedures that cause the surface area of your scalp that fails to produce hairs to be reduced. Initially, this can result in very taut skin on the head, as it is stretched over a large area. But the skin will stretch to accommodate the reduced skin surface area and eventually fit your head as it previously did. Scalp reduction surgeries are sometimes used in conjunction with hair transplants to treat large sections of balding scalp.