Although a thinning of the hair is a natural part of the aging process, many men experience hair loss prematurely. According to Medical News Today, 50 percent of men suffer from a type of hair loss called androgenetic alopecia, or male pattern baldness. If you are a young man and suffering from thinning hair, it is very likely that you have inherited this type of permanent hair loss. However, there are other possible causes.
According to Medical News Today, DHT, or dihydrotestosterone, is an adrogen, which is a product of the male hormone testosterone and the root cause of 95 percent of hair loss in male pattern baldness. Men have more DHT present in the body than women, explaining why they suffer more from hair loss. DHT kills the hair follicles by blocking them from receiving the nutrients they need to survive.
Alopecia areata is the name given to hair loss when it appears in patches, and it can be another possible cause of hair loss in young, healthy males. An autoimmune disease, alopecia areata is the result of an overactive immune system attacking its own cells. Medical News Today says that it is largely hereditary and can be triggered by stress or viral infections. Alopecia areata can go into remission for short or long periods, sometimes never returning.
MayoClinic.com notes that hair loss can be caused by poor nutrition, medications, hormonal changes, overly tight hairstyles, scarring and inflammation. Hair loss can also be caused by emotional or physical shock; this is known as telogen effluvium hair loss. In most cases these forms are often temporary.
According to MayoClinic.com, by massaging Minoxidil, an over-the-counter topical foam or liquid, into your scalp twice a day, you can prevent or slow further hair loss. Some people can also see evidence of regrowth. Similarly, the prescription pills Propecia, whose medical name is Finasteride, can produce the same results after daily usage. Propecia works by preventing the conversion of testosterone into DHT.
Although rare, side effects of Propecia can include sexual dysfunction such as reduced libido. Medical News Today notes that one in 50 men may be affected by this. Minoxidil can cause over-drying of the skin and some irritation. They are suitable treatments only for androgenetic hair loss and areata alopecia. For information on how to treat other forms of hair loss, consult your doctor for diagnosis and advice.