Male pattern baldness affects over 50 per cent of the male population who are over the age of 50. However, it can also afflict younger men at some stage in their lives. Hair replacement advertisements are now a common sight in society.
In past years, men seemed to accept baldness with a resigned inevitability. However, in more recent times, men have acknowledged that it is not only women who should take care of their appearances. The shelves of chemists now also contain several hair products for men.
Men do not have to accept losing their hair as just one of those things. Young celebrities like Wayne Rooney have made it fashionable and acceptable to restore their receding hairline with the help of hair transplant surgery.
There are many causes of male pattern baldness which are triggered by male hormones. Hair is generated in hair follicles which appear as small pouches under the skin’s surface. In men with healthy hair, a hair grows from each follicle for approximately three years whereupon it is lost, and a new hair emerges. This pattern continues for life but for balding men, something else occurs.
The thinking behind male baldness centres on the follicles becoming more sensitive to dihydrotestosterone, which leads to the shrinking of hair follicles. It is unclear as to why various hair follicles are affected at various times resulting in the balding process being gradual. Hair transplant surgery is often the only solution to the onset of male baldness; particularly if medications such as finasteride (trade name Propecia) and minoxidil (trade name Regaine) have yielded unsatisfactory results.
Wigs are another form of hair replacement but men are increasingly opting for hair transplant surgery as the more permanent and comfortable solution which allows them to continue with their daily routine.