Hair Loss Treatments

Treatment for hair loss is categorised by non-surgical (non-invasive) and surgical (invasive) methods, and there are a number of options available in each. Surgical hair transplantation tends to be mainly suitable for men, leaving women with limited options in terms of surgical methods. In 2016, 86% of men diagnosed were treated with this method compared to just 14% of women. This is because hair loss presentation and progression differs between the sexes. Women are unfortunately often not eligible for the procedure and must find an alternative solution.

To understand hair loss better visit our understanding hair loss page.

Below, you can learn more about the different hair loss treatment options.

Non-surgical hair loss solutions

These solutions are most people’s first choice before they opt for surgery. They can help disguise the condition, slow down hair loss progression and stimulate growth. There are three types of treatments in this category: natural treatments, cosmetic treatments and prescription treatments.

Natural cure

Massage with natural ingredients
Massaging the scalp can increase circulation to hair follicles and assist with the absorption of nutrients needed for hair to grow. There is an extensive list of ingredients thought to have a positive effect on hair loss, including aloe vera, Indian gooseberry and coconut milk, among others.

Nutrition and Natural supplements
The body relies on good nutrition to maintain healthy hair. Diet is important for preventing hair loss and promoting healthy growth. Adequate protein from foods like fish, eggs and beans is essential, as is maintaining the right levels of iron, zinc and vitamins A, B, C, and folic acid.

To compensate for a lack of nutrient deficiencies, natural supplements can help. Once-a-day multivitamins rich in vitamins A, C and B-complex vitamins, as well as omega-3 fatty acids may be beneficial if your hair loss is the result of a deficiency.

Hair care
A good hair care regimen will also help keep hair healthy. Use mild shampoos and conditioners containing biotin and make sure the water is lukewarm, as hot water can dry hair and make it brittle. Towel dry or let it dry naturally and limit the use of hair dryers if you can.

Cosmetic treatments

Shampoos
Shampoos formulated to treat hear loss are readily available. They often contain natural ingredients, vitamins, antioxidants, amino acids and other substances thought to promote healthy hair. While currently none will halt or reverse hair loss, they may improve general hair health and assist with hair retention.

Hair pieces, wigs and hair extensions
Wigs and toupees are an age-old solution to cover balding – and particularly extensive hair loss. They can be constructed from a range of materials, including human hair, animal hair and synthetic fibres, and shaped into any hairstyle. Hair pieces is another option for covering bald spots or undertaken to add volume to thinning hair. Piece of hair are attached to a small base to cover a larger area where the hair on the head is sparse.

Hair extensions are made from human hair or artificial fibres. The process involves attaching clusters of around 250 strands of hair or fibre to other sections of your natural hair. They can be attached to your hair in a number of ways close to the scalp. Affixing methods include metal clips, knots or by a process known as welding, which fixes the extensions to natural hair just above scalp level.

While results are immediate, hair extensions do not come without risks. The attachment areas are lumpy and can make sleep uncomfortable. Pressure from rubbing on pillows can also stress your natural hair and necessitate removal of growing hair shafts. This can result in hair follicles being unable to regenerate.

Hair concealers
Applied to either the scalp or hair itself, hair concealers make thinning hair appear fuller. Hair concealers are ideal for people who are in the early stages of receding and hair thinning, and also for those with bald patches. Concealers come in creams and powders, the latter being the most commonly used.

Scalp micropigmentation or hair tattooing
This form of treatment is permanent and is used to give the illusion of a closely shaved head of thick hair. It can also be used to conceal hair transplantation scars. Suitable for both sexes, it generally takes two to three sessions to complete.

Hair implantation
This treatment focuses on implanting prosthetic hair into the scalp to cover bold or diffuse areas. Unlike most other options, hair implantation offers instant results. Your physician will determine your alopecia grade and implant the right amount of fibres to cover the area. Hair implantation is an excellent alternative for women who are diagnosed not suitable for hair transplantation.

Hairstetics hair implants feature the latest technology, directly inspired by the natural anatomy of your hair. This new, safe and minimally-invasive procedure involves implanting prosthetic hair, with pre-filled cartridges, into the scalp to cover bald or diffuse areas. In less than an hour, you’ll leave with your new hair implants in place and return to your daily activities. The natural-looking Hairstetics hair implants will immediately blend with your own hair, allowing you to regain your old sense of style.

Hair regrowth stimulation methods

These treatment options are usually combined with other and not used as stand-alone treatments. There is very little clinical evidence supporting the effectiveness regrowth stimulation methods as a hair restoration options.

Mesotherapy

This is used to encourage natural hair regeneration. Microinjections are made just beneath the epidermis to stimulate the mesoderm layer. It is a dual-action process involving both chemical and mechanical stimulation. The injected solution contains chemicals, minerals, amino acids, vitamins, nucleic acids and coenzymes tailored to suit your specific needs. There is as yet little clinical evidence to demonstrate mesotherapy’s effectiveness as a hair restoration option.

Platelet-rich plasma therapy (PRP)

PRP involves injecting your own blood into affected areas. Blood is centrifuged before injection. This method is said to encourage the release of growth factors that increase the production of reparative cells. PRP treatment are undertaken once a month for up three to four months and then every three to six months. There is little scientific evidence to demonstrate how well it works.

Laser treatment: Low-level laser therapy (LLLT)

LLLT is known under a few names, including red light therapy, cold laser therapy and soft laser. This type of light therapy is in combination with other treatments to treat pattern baldness. The light is used to increase blood flow to the scalp to encourage resting or dormant follicles to go into anagen. It can also prevent production of DHT Dihydrotestosterone that harms follicles.

Prescription treatments

Prescription treatments

A number of medications can be prescribed to reduce hair loss. The most common ones are described below.

Minoxidil (Rogaine)
This solution is available in liquid and foam forms that is rubbed into the scalp and suitable for both men and women. It offers moderate results which range from regrowth to a reduced rate of hair loss or both. Regrowth tends to be weaker than existing hair and side effects can include irritation, hair growth in unwanted areas and rapid heart rate. It must be applied continually to retain results and is not suitable for all forms of pattern baldness.

Finasteride (Propecia)
In many countries this is a prescription-only medication for men. Most of those who take the once-daily pill report a slowing of hair loss, and some experience regrowth. The drug must be taken continuously and is not suitable for all forms of pattern baldness. Side effects are rare but can include lower sex drive and an increased risk of prostate cancer.

Surgical hair loss treatments

Surgical hair loss treatments

As well as non-surgical hair loss treatments, there are surgical alternatives. Not all people are candidates. A qualified physician will be able to assess your suitability. Read more about these treatments below.

Hair transplantation
Hair transplantation is a surgical procedure that involves transplanting hair follicles from areas genetically resistant to balding, such as the back of the head, to a balding area (recipient site). A very common procedure, suitable for men with male pattern baldness. There are two different hair transplantation techniques: FUT and FUE. Click here to learn more about hair transplantation.

Scalp reduction
This procedure is rarely ever performed today. It involves excising areas of scalp affected by hair loss and stretching and repositioning healthy skin over to cover the gap. Currently, it accounts for just 0.2% of procedures carried out today1.

1 International Society of Hair Restoration Surgery: 2017 Practice Census Results.

What does this now mean for you?

There is no one-treatment-suits-all solution to hair loss and what works for one person may not be suitable for another. Medications like Minodixil and Finasteride cannot offer permanent cures and if eligible, surgical procedures are often a last result for women.

A good alternative to unsatisfactory treatments and surgical procedures are the new generation of hair implants. This safe and effective treatment can offer outstanding natural looking results immediately.

However, before you undertake any treatment, it is very important that you consult a physician to establish the cause of your hair loss and ask for treatment recommendations suitable for your condition.