As you age, gradually losing your hair can be quite depressing for men and women both. Fortunately, due to the advancements in science and especially medical science, ways have been created to slow down or even put a stop to hair loss.
One definitive way is to get hair transplant or hair plug surgery, which’ll even allow you to grow some of your hair back. But before you do that, don’t forget to learn the difference between hair plugs and hair transplants
With that said, the big 3 have maintained their place as the best hair loss treatments throughout the innovations and advancements in science over the years.
So, make sure to join us as we discuss each of the big 3 in detail:
1. Minoxidil (Rogaine)
Strangely enough, minoxidil didn’t start out as a hair loss treatment drug, but an exclusive oral drug for patients with high blood pressure.
It was only later that doctors started to discover its side effects like reversing male pattern baldness and promoting hair growth.
After learning that, the first tropical solution containing 2% minoxidil was produced in the 1980s with the aim to reduce hair loss.
To this day, doctors have been unable to figure out how minoxidil stimulates hair growth, but after arduous research the general consensus is that it dilates the blood vessels around the hair follicles which in turn increases their nutrient supply and promotes hair growth.
Men who complain about hair loss are given a solution which contains about 5% concentrated minoxidil, whereas women are usually given a 2% solution.
The trick you all should know with using minoxidil is to use it as early as you can in your hair loss because it’s most effective when your hair has just started thinning.
However, you should be aware that the use of minoxidil is like a double-edged sword because if you stop using the drug after prolonged use then the hair fall will become even more rapid.
2. Finasteride (Propecia)
The drug better known as Propecia is a type II 5-alpha reductase inhibiting antiandrogen. Unlike minoxidil, finasteride has been used to treat hair loss for a long time and is one of the most popular hair loss medications.
For those of you who want a scientific explanation to how Finasteride works, we’ll first have to tell you what the type II 5-alpha reductase enzyme does.
Its job is to convert testosterone to dihydrotestosterone which is the main cause for baldness and hair loss in men. Finasteride blocks this enzyme which allows your hair to return to its normal hair growth cycle and also inhibits the conversion of testosterone to dihydrotestosterone.
The return to their normal growth cycle will allow your hair to grow back quickly and stop hair loss.
Lastly, if you decide to use finasteride then make sure to use it daily and continuously for 3-6 months because discontinuing its use will result in the effects of the drug reversing in 6-13 months.
3. Ketoconazole (Nizoral)
This isn’t as widely used as the other two in the list. Ketoconazole which is sold under the brand name of Nizoral is an antifungal medicine used to treat predominantly fungal infections.
However, when Ketoconazole shampoo is used with Finasteride as a scalp microflora inhibitor it can reduce follicular and scalp inflammation which is the main reason for alopecia.
A few clinical studies have proven that Ketoconazole shampoo used alone can also be an effective hair loss medication, but medical experts have recommended to use the shampoo in combination with other treatments.
Just like all the other medications in the list, this will also have a number of side effects that you should fully research and discuss with your doctor before proceeding.
We should also inform you that doctors highly discourage taking the drug orally unless it’s for severe infections.
Even though it is a slightly more expensive option, we would recommend getting a hair transplant rather than using any of these medications if you’re suffering from severe hair loss.
But if you’ve just started noticing your hair loss then these medications can work wonders for you. Just remember that once again there will be some side effects and that the results will not be instant, but you will notice a gradual increase in hair as time progresses.
So, you must exercise patience and hopefully you’ll start seeing the results in a few months.