Many people think that the benefits of hair transplantation surgery are all about appearances. They think that thousands of individuals are driven to get a hair transplant simply so that they can look good. As regular readers of this blog will know, that’s not a viewpoint we share. Nor is it an opinion shared by the many researchers who have published studies outlining the significant psychological benefits of hair transplant surgery.
This article is going to revisit some of these benefits. We’ll start by looking at one of the latest studies to focus on the psychosocial benefits of hair transplant surgery. Keep reading to find out more!
Published in October 2022 by Iranian researchers, the latest study focused on a group of thirty-five men with androgenetic alopecia (AGA) who underwent hair transplant surgery at a clinic in Tehran. The group ranged in age from twenty-five to seventy, with the average being just under forty. The research took the form of a follow-up survey one year after their surgery.
The researchers used two respected academic tools as part of their study. Loneliness was measured using the University of California-Los Angeles (UCLA)’s Loneliness Scale, while the level of anxiety and depression in the participants was assessed using the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS). Each individual completed a questionnaire before they entered the clinic for their hair transplant. Twelve months later, they answered the same set of questions, and the results were compared.
Researchers found that there was a marked difference in the scores for anxiety, loneliness and depression between the ‘before and after’ questionnaire responses. Following their transplants, single participants showed a reduction of nearly seven points when asked about feelings of loneliness. Married participants showed a lower reduction of just over two points. The disparity between the two sets of statistics is probably explained to some degree by the marital status of the respondents; single people are, typically, more vulnerable to loneliness in the first place, so a bigger fall in that group is not entirely unexpected.
The researchers made it clear that their study backs up what has been uncovered in other work, specifically, that hair transplantation in cases of AGA has a measurable beneficial impact on a person’s state of mind. They did acknowledge, however, that their study was based on a small sample with no corresponding control group, and that it was limited to males with AGA. On its own, therefore, the Tehran study could be dismissed as of limited value. It is the fact that it confirms previous studies and builds on the findings of these that makes it so interesting.
It is particularly relevant, for example, in light of a piece of research published in 2018 in which Chinese academics measured the impact of a hair transplant on a group of males with AGA. This was a larger study than the Tehran work, involving approximately one thousand participants. It, too, concluded that the surgery raised the self-esteem of the participants.
A 2005 study produced by the University of Barcelona demonstrated that men with AGA often suffer from lower self-esteem than their peers, a situation that frequently results in bouts of depression. Four years later, a University of Westminster study highlighted the negative thoughts and feelings associated with alopecia and concluded that these could harm an individual’s ability to enjoy life to the full.
The reason these conclusions matter is because there’s still a gap between those who could benefit from hair restoration treatment and the numbers coming forward to avail of it. There are many factors behind that but one of them is undoubtedly the stigma that still attaches to any form of hair treatment. So long as getting a hair transplant is viewed as being all about appearances, as a vanity project in other words, people will be deterred from getting treatment. When it is seen for what it actually is, a surgical procedure with real psychological benefits for the individual, attitudes may change.
Fretting about hair loss without doing something about it is just so much wasted energy and time. It could be that you’re not experiencing hair loss at all, that what you’re seeing is the regular shedding that forms part of the hair growth cycle. If you do have a hair loss problem, isn’t it better to have it checked sooner rather than later?
Vinci Hair Clinic can help you with this. We are one of the largest hair restoration outfits in the world, and we offer a free, no-obligation consultation to all our new clients. You can choose to come into one of our clinics for an in-person meeting or you can send us photographs via WhatsApp. Whatever you decide, get in touch with us today and make that appointment!