Male Pattern Baldness – Dr. Acky Friedman
Facts and myths about this issue
Male hair loss is a process with a heavy genetic element (sometimes while skipping a generation or two). There is no possibility of predicting what will be the speed of male hair loss and what will be that level of baldness at the end of the process. It can vary between men from the same family even though there may be similar genetic traits. The process of hair loss among men may start at a young age. In recent years, we see the beginning of this process already at the end of the second decade of life. This gradual process begins with the creation of deepening bays along with a bald ring on top. These areas get closer to one to the other, and at the end of the process, in situations of full baldness, it would look like what Ben-Gurion had. There are a few myths that relate to male baldness and its possible treatments, and we have a few examples:
1. Maintaining adequate nutrition will prevent baldness.
Nutrition relates more to hair loss processes (where hair loss can be reversible) and not about the natural balding process when hair loss isn’t reversible.
2. Bad blood flow in the scalp causes balding.
Balding is caused by and probably due to the existence of high levels of specific hormone in the scalp or by increased sensitivity of hair follicle to this hormone. There is no scientific evidence of the issue of blood flow. However, we may say that one of the common local treatments (gel or spray) is using a substance that is a medication for high blood pressure. The assumption is that when smearing this substance on the scalp, it improves local blood flow and slows down the balding process. Relating to the same issue, standing on the head for a long period of time (to improve blood flow and thereby slow down the balding pace) – doesn’t help either (Ben Gurion used to do headstands; this did not improve his balding).
3. Oily scalp hastens the process of balding.
An oily scalp and its dandruff won’t rush either the balding or the hair loss process.
4. Shaving scalp hair grows stronger hair.
There is no connection between shaving to a growth pace or hair loss pace. In the same logic, men who shave would have thicker bristles every year.
5. Balding is evidence for high intelligence.
Where does this position Albert Einstein?
6. The balding man is more “manly”.
The hormone that causes balding is in fact a derivative of testosterone (men hormone) but the balding is usually caused by genetic factors and the impacts of testosterone on the body.