Author: Sachin Parikh, MD
As we age and experience hormonal shifts, hair thinning happens to almost everyone. It’s often unnoticeable at first, but gradually hair around the temples or crown begins to fall out. Sometimes the center part gets wider and wider or hair all over begins to shed leaving lush locks suddenly thin and brittle. At Lieberman & Parikh Center for Hair Restoration, we often see patients who are looking for nonsurgical hair replacement therapies.
While there’s no way to completely stop hair thinning, there are thinning hair treatments that have been either FDA-approved or undergone rigorous clinical trials. In our practice, we’ve found the best nonsurgical treatment for hair loss is a combination of multiple nonsurgical treatments, carefully customized for each patient. We’ve outlined some of the nonsurgical but effective treatments we use for a multi-pronged approach to hair thinning:
Platelet-Rich Plasma (PRP) therapies have been used in medical settings such as orthopedics and dentistry for decades, but in the last several years, it has become one of the best treatments for hair loss. PRP, which is made-up of your own blood, is injected into your scalp to stimulate the hair follicles. The high concentration of growth factors in your PRP can naturally reactivate underperforming hair follicles to grow.
Topical Solutions Like Minoxidil
Minoxidil, a topical solution and foam is applied directly to the scalp and can help slow hair loss as well as regrow hair. The foam and 2% Minoxidil solution usually effective for women with thinning hair, and while Minoxidil may be used to help men with MPB, it is usually only recommended for men after Finasteride has been used without seeing results.
Oral Medications Like Finasteride and Antiandrogens
Navigating the field of oral medications used to treat hair loss can be tricky because the drugs are designed to alter the hormonal balance in your body, which will have different results for different people.
For men, an oral medication like Finasteride, sold under the brand-names Proscar and Propecia, is often the first line of defense against hair loss. Finasteride has been shown to slow hair loss and provide approximately a 30% improvement after six months of treatment. However the effectiveness of Finasteride stops as soon as you stop taking the drug, and Finasteride has not been proven effective for women.
For women with androgenetic alopecia (FPB), antiandrogens like spironolactone and oral contraceptives can be used to treat hair loss by slowing down the production of androgens in the adrenal glands and ovaries, which then slow down the rate of hair loss. However, if these medications are taken by someone without high levels of androgens, they may actually encourage hair loss and therefore should be avoided.
Low-Level Laser (Light) Therapy – LLLT
Low-level laser treatments are relatively new in the field of hair restoration, but it has long been known that red or near-infrared laser light promotes tissue repair and low-intensity light, also called low-level laser therapy (LLLT) stimulates cellular growth.
There are several different types of headwear that send light into the scalp which reduces the inflammation in follicles that inhibit regeneration. LLLT also increased blood flow which helps increase the delivery of nutrients and oxygen to the hair follicles. In addition, the light prevents the buildup of DHT (Dihydrotestosterone, an androgen sex hormone produced from testosterone) in the follicles.
Pharmaceutical-Grade Nutraceuticals & Shampoos
Pharmaceutical-grade hair supplements like Viviscal and HairMedica are full of the minerals known to encourage healthy hair growth – Biotin, Niacin (Vitamin B3), Vitamin C, Zinc and Iron. They provide a concentrated source of biologically active ingredients and are formulated in dosages higher than naturally found in foods. Taking these nutraceuticals and eating foods rich in these vitamins – oysters, sweet potatoes, eggs and spinach – are easy ways to encourage hair growth.
There are also shampoos, conditioners and serums made by the same companies who make Viviscal and HairMedica that have been clinically-proven to combat hair loss. By rubbing the product into your scalp, the nutrients not only cleanse and exfoliate dead cells, but encourage the production of new skin cells and eliminate the presence of DHT.
What’s The Best Hair Loss Treatment For You?
Knowing which hair loss treatment is right for you can be complicated to figure out because hair loss is often the result of imbalances in the body. The best advice we can give is to consult a board-certified, hair restoration specialist who can thoroughly look at what is causing your type of hair loss and which modality will be most effective. Most likely, your hair loss treatment plan will be a multi-pronged approach using some of the treatments mentioned in this article.
Disclaimer: The content within this site is not intended to provide diagnosis, treatment or specific medical advice. The products and claims made about specific products and treatments through this article have not been evaluated by the United States Food and Drug Administration and are not approved to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent disease. Please consult with a NeoGraft Certified Physician or other healthcare professionals regarding any medical or health related diagnosis.
Lieberman & Parikh Biography:
Regarded as the leading hair loss treatment center in the Bay Area, The Lieberman and Parikh Center for Hair Restoration offers patients exceptional, natural-looking results with a quality, patient-care experience Drs. David M. Lieberman and Sachin S. Parikh are dual-board certified facial plastic surgeons and hair restoration experts with a particular passion for helping patients regain a healthy, youthful look.
Using the minimally invasive and innovative NeoGraft® technology, Drs. Lieberman and Parikh are able to transform a person’s outward appearance with minimal downtime and scarring. They personally consult with all potential patients but also provide an exceptionally experienced medical team to guide patients through every step of the hair restoration process. The Lieberman and Parikh Center for Hair Restoration provides it all – thorough patient education, honest advice, state-of-the-art technology, long-term patient care and most importantly, impressive, natural-looking results. For more information or to schedule an in-office consultation with Drs. Lieberman and Parikh, call (650) 327-3232.