Balding is a fact of life for all men, and it can really drain your confidence.
To be exact, 62% of men in a Spanish study reported that balding deflated their self-esteem. This isn’t a silly modern-day superficiality phenomenon either; according to Albert Mannes, Ph.D., “Thick hair has always been associated with youth and masculinity. Hair loss signals aging.”
Because of the importance of thick hair in our social spheres, scientists (who may be balding themselves!) have been turning their research towards ways to help prevent and treat different kinds of balding.
- Source of Balding
There are two different kinds of balding that can generally be diagnosed through sight alone. The first one is if your “hair is only on the sides and middle top of your head, the bare areas form the letter M (as in male-pattern baldness). But thinning that spreads across your scalp and not your crown or temples often indicates an underlying health issue.” Some of these underlying health issues can include nutritional or hormonal deficiencies, such as low iron, low protein, or thyroid problems.
- Science of Balding
There are really only two drugs that have been approved by the FDA to treat balding safely, and those are finasteride (Propecia) and minoxidil (Rogaine). One warning though – Propecia works by “blocking the conversion of testosterone to DHT, but there’s a major side effect to consider: It could mess with nerve-signaling pathways to your penis, resulting in ED and a loused-up libido”.
- Shampoo to Blame?
Many shampoos claim they can make your hair thicker, but only one ingredient has been proven to truly thicken your mane, and that is Ketoconazole, which is actually an antifungal that is often used to battle dandruff. Give Nizarol A-D a try – it is the only nonprescription shampoo that has ketoconazole in it.
- Diet to Blame?
Reducing fried foods in your diet can decrease the activity of your oil-glands, and skipping dessert can prevent an insulin surge, both of which would otherwise cause a spike in DHT, which contributes to balding. So put down that fried chicken and Twinkie…
- Light Therapy
In the 1960’s, scientists zapped the bare skin of mice that had been shaved with lasers to see if the light caused any cancers. Although the lights didn’t spark cancer, they did have an unexpected outcome: hair. This discovery was the start of what is now called ‘low-level light therapy’, a treatment that is FDA approved for male-pattern baldness. A doctor can administer the treatment, or a light-therapy helmet called a LaserCap can be purchased for a whopping $3000. This LaserCap can be used at home, and is actually less expensive than three years of Propecia.
- Accept It
A German study found that men generally cope with their balding in three different ways: 1. Focus on fashion and/or fitness, avoid mirrors altogether, or simply accept their newfound baldness in all its shiny glory. The key is to re-orient how to perceive your baldness – instead of viewing it as a sign of aging, think of it as a sign of maturity, wisdom, and experience instead.
- Channel Your Inner Vin Diesel
Skip the comb over. It is never a good look. Ever. “Nine times out of ten, a shaved head is a vast improvement.”
Want some more statistical encouragement that bald is better?
“People estimated that they could bench-press about 13 percent more weight.”
“Men with shaved heads were deemed more attractive than those with thinning hair.”
So, embrace your age, love what you are working with, and *most importantly* never sport the comb-over…
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