If your father, uncle or brother sport a balding pate and you’re worried about the future of your own crowning glory, you need to know about DHT. Read on to discover what DHT is, how it causes hair loss and what you can do to beat it.
What is DHT?
DHT (dihydrotestosterone) is a male sex hormone which is a by-product of an interaction between testosterone and the enzyme 5-alpha reductase. It plays an important role in the development of male characteristics in the prenatal period and during puberty. Although DHT is essential at certain times in a man’s life, it is also to blame for a condition that most would prefer to avoid – hair loss.
How does DHT cause hair loss?
DHT is one of the main causes of androgenetic alopecia (male pattern baldness). The condition is inherited from your parents and causes genetic sensitivity to DHT. The hormone attaches to the hair follicles and prevents them from getting an adequate supply of the proteins, vitamins and minerals needed for healthy growth. This results in a process called miniaturisation. The hair follicle itself shrinks, the hair growth stage shortens and the resting stage becomes longer. Men who have androgenetic alopecia might notice their hair getting thinner and bald patches emerging, especially around the hairline and crown, as the follicles stop producing hair.
Are there any treatments to prevent the effects of DHT?
Vinci Hair Clinic offer a range of clinically-proven treatments for androgenetic alopecia. Many men prefer to start by trying one of the two medicines that block the effects of DHT. Finasteride and minoxidil can stop hair loss as well as stimulating hair growth and are effective for the majority of men. These medicines can be used in combination with other hair restoration treatments such as PRP and LLLT. Another popular option is natural DHT-blockers such as saw palmetto and pygeum africanum, both of which are ingredients in Vinci’s Vitruvian Line vitamin and mineral complex. For men who prefer a permanent solution to male pattern baldness, the answer is hair transplants. For FUT and FUE hair transplant surgeries, hair which is not genetically-sensitive to DHT is harvested from the sides and back of the patient’s head. The resulting grafts are used to rebuild and fill out balding areas, allowing the patient to regrow their own hair.