Why does your hair fall out? It’s a question millions of men have been asking themselves for years. No man likes to look in the mirror or on his pillow and see hair coming out. He wants a thick, sexy head of hair women can run their fingers through. On this page, we’ll discuss male hair loss and its various causes (including some that will surprise you) and give you some practical tips to deal with it so you can regain your hair and confidence!
What is Hair Loss?
Hair loss is defined by the sudden or chronic loss of hair anywhere on the body or head. The medical term for hair loss is alopecia and men most commonly notice hair loss in a few different ways: Uniform thinning, baldness at the top of the head or the “Widow’s peak”, where hair disappears from the temples.
The Life Cycle of Hair
In order to answer the question, “Why does your hair fall out”, it helps to understand the natural life cycle of hair. The life cycle of hair is divided into three phases:
- Anagen – This is the active cycle of hair growth and lasts anywhere from 6 months to 2 years.
- Catagen – This is the transitional cycle of hair growth and lasts from two to three weeks.
- Telogen – This is the resting phase of the hair cycle. This resting period can last two to three months. At the end of the resting phase, old hair is shed and a new growth cycle begins.
One of the most common types of hair loss is telogen effluvium (TE). TE happens when the number of hair follicles producing hair drops dramatically during the resting phase. This results in a significant amount of hair shedding during the resting phase with not as much new hair to take its place.
Common Types of Hair Loss in Men
- Involutional Alopecia
This is the type of hair loss that is most commonly referred to as “male pattern baldness”. This happens because of a change in the life cycle of the hair, which causes gradual thinning first noticed at the temples and back of the head. Involutional alopecia is thought to be caused by genetics. So if your grandfather had it and your dad had it, more than likely you’re going to develop it yourself.
- Androgenic Alopecia
Androgenic (meaning “dual-gender”) alopecia occurs in both men and women and is a common cause of male hair loss. Men with this type of hair loss may notice its development as early as their 20s. The cause of androgenic alopecia seems to be a combination of hormones and genetics.
- Telogen Effluvium
As described above, telogen effluvium or TE, occurs when there is a type of disruption in the normal resting life cycle of hair growth. Hair loss is usually sudden and acute, with hair shedding rapidly over the course of a few weeks or months. TE is called a “reactive” type of hair loss because it usually occurs as a result of medications, hormonal stress or other physical conditions. Recovery from TE is just as spontaneous; hair can regenerate in as little as 6 months.
Common Reasons for Male Hair Loss
When your hair is coming out, you want to understand what could be causing it and what you can do about it. Let’s take a look at the primary causes of male hair loss:
Alopecia Areata – Alopecia areata occurs when the immune system attacks the hair follicles as if they are an invading substance. Hair loss is often noticed in small, coin-sized patches. Light therapy, topical medications and drug therapy is often recommended for autoimmune-related hair loss.
Drug Side Effects – Why does your hair fall out? It could be the prescription medication you’re taking. If your doctor has prescribed medication for gout, depression, arthritis, heart problems or high blood pressure, it could be causing your hair loss. Stopping your hair loss may be as simple as switching to a new medication.
Thyroid Disease – Men who notice hair coming out may suffer from undiagnosed thyroid disease. According to renowned health expert, Dr. Joseph Mercola, men with undiagnosed thyroid disease may notice falling hair, high cholesterol, low libido, infertility, fatigue, and inability to lose weight.
Stress – Men who are genetically predisposed to androgenic alopecia may notice sudden hair loss for up to 3 months after a particularly stressful even in their lives. Often, this type of hair loss corrects itself after the body and mind have had a chance to readjust. However, chronic stress not only leads to permanent hair loss, it can lead to problems with high blood pressure.
Iron Deficiency – According to research conducted at the Cleveland Clinic, there is a definite connection between hair loss and iron deficiency. Don’t just buy a bottle of iron pills and start popping them, though. Have your doctor test your blood to be sure iron deficiency is causing your hair loss since too much iron in the blood can result in toxic overload.
Vitamin D Deficiency – There is a connection between vitamin D and hair loss. Vitamin D deficiency is one of the most common vitamin deficiencies facing Americans. Unless you’re a construction worker or landscaper, you probably don’t get a lot of sun. Not only can severe vitamin deficiency cause hair loss, it has also been shown to lead to depression, anxiety, autoimmune disease, ADD, and infertility.
Gluten Intolerance – You may have never heard the word “gluten” before but it’s a protein found in wheat, barley, rye, and some oats and may be the reason you’re losing your hair. Why does your hair fall out because of this protein? Men with undiagnosed gluten intolerance often experience abdominal pain, gas, bloating, diarrhea, brain fog, hair loss, and infertility. The reason gluten intolerance causes hair loss is because the body cannot digest the protein, leading to chronic intestinal inflammation and malnutrition. When the body is malnourished, it can result in hair loss.
Hair Loss Treatments for Men
For men living with hair loss, there are plenty of hair loss treatments to consider, both conventional and natural. Let’s take a look at them:
Propecia was first developed to treat men with enlarged prostate. Men taking the drug (then called “Finasteride”) had an unexpected side effect: Hair regrowth! Doctors often prescribe Propecia to men experiencing androgenic alopecia in 1mg per day doses with good results. Propecia works by lowering androgen dihydrotestosterone (DHT). DHT is the hormone responsible for shrinking the hair follicle and causing male pattern baldness.
Profollica Hair Recovery System for Men
Profollica Hair Recovery System for Men is a newly formulated supplement that reduces hair loss and encourages growth. It has a two-step hair loss treatment to ensure you maintain healthy and voluminous hair. Profollica prevents premature graying, reduces bald patches, and restores your hair’s natural color. The formula activates inactive follicles, which enhances the growth of new hair. It ensures the new hair grows stronger, fuller, thicker, and healthier. Profollica promotes new hair growth for both men and women of all ages. It contains clinically proven ingredients that inhibit hair loss. Each treatment in the system provides benefits that improve your look.
Rogaine is a top-selling topical hair restoration product millions of men just like you have used successfully for over 20 years. Rogaine works to stimulate the scalp and invigorate shrunken hair follicles, which can encourage the regrowth of hair.
Hair Restoration Surgery
Dominant Hair Transplant
One of the most common types of hair replacement surgery, dominant hair transplant surgery takes hair from the sides and back of the head and transplants it to the balding areas in the front and top.
Scalp Reduction Surgery
This hair restoration surgery involves removal of the bald part of the scalp and stretching of the covered portion of the scalp, which returns an even hair pattern to the head.
If you dine primarily on processed and fast food, you’re setting yourself up for serious health problems down the road. You’re also contributing to your balding head. Eating a diet rich in organic protein, fruits, vegetables and healthy oils such as olive and coconut oil can help nourish your body from the inside out, resulting in a thicker head of hair.
Get Tested for Vitamin Deficiencies
Undiagnosed vitamin deficiencies can be an underlying cause of your thinning hair. Having your blood tested for iron or vitamin D deficiency can help you take steps to re-grow your hair naturally.
Try Vitamin E
Massaging vitamin E oil into your scalp is another natural way to thicken and nourish hair. This stimulates circulation and provides essential nutrients for your scalp. For best results, leave vitamin E oil on overnight while wearing a cap and wash the oil off in the morning.
Test Yourself for Food Allergies
A common cause of malnutrition that can lead to hair loss is gluten intolerance. If, in addition to falling hair, you’re living with a lot of gastrointestinal problems, cut all traces of gluten from your diet for a period of one month then reintroduce it to test for a reaction. If you stop feeling sick when you’re not eating gluten and start feeling sick again when you do, you’ve found the primary cause of your hair loss.
Commercially advertised shampoos often contain a lot of harsh ingredients and unnatural chemicals that may make balding worse. Switch to a natural, paraben-free shampoo that’s lighter and easier on your head.
If you notice hair coming out, you’re not alone. The best way to correct hair loss is to find out what’s causing it and get to the root (pun intended) of the problem. You now have plenty of options to choose from when it comes to re-growing your hair. All you have to do is make the decision to take back your confidence and your life.