Hair loss or thinning for both women and men, impacts how confident the individual feels about their appearance. The aesthetic standard for both genders and the goal, is to have healthy, thick hair that compliments other aspects of our appearance. Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) treatments can help.
There are many reasons that men and women begin to lose their hair, and clinical conditions including androgenetic alopecia, or ‘pattern hair loss’ which has hereditary features. While many people believe that thinning hair is ‘passed down’ on the mother’s side of the family, clinicians know that the condition is prevalent when either side of the family has a history of baldness, or significant thinning hair with age.
The causes of hair loss for men and women can be linked to other factors, including lifestyle, stress and chronic health conditions. In this article we’ll discuss why hair thinning occurs and explain a new advanced therapy (PRP) that utilizes your own white blood cells to stimulate hair regrowth.
The Warning Signs of Hair Loss
Both men and women can experience temporary, or situational hair loss that may or may not require treatment. The early signs can include more frequent hair loss in the shower (while shampooing hair), while brushing or styling your hair, or loss overnight (you may start to notice more hair on your pillow case).
Not all signs of hair loss indicate a clinical problem. The amount of hair follicles that are produced on the scalp depends on your overall health, a balance of hormones, and hair loss can be triggered by temporarily high levels of stress, change in prescription medications, and sometimes dramatic dietary changes.
There are three different cycles of hair growth:
Up to 90% of the hair on your head is anagen, or in the growth phase. This is the active cycle when the cells in the root of the hair follicle are their most active, and they divide at a rapid rate that provides noticeable hair growth of on average, about .39 inches per month. A healthy individual can stay in this active growth phase from two to seven years on average. When someone has more difficulty growing their hair past a certain length, they have a shorter anagen phase than other people, who are able to grow their hair longer.
The second part of the lifecycle of hair growth, during the Catagen phase the hair follicles begin to undergo structural changes consistent with age and maturation. The growth phase ends, and the root of the follicle detaches itself from the blood supply in the scalp and moves slowly to the surface of the scalp area, as the follicle shrinks in size. This is a natural shedding process where the loose follicle can now fall out, during normal activities such as washing, hair styling or brushing.
This is the resting stage of the hair growth cycle, where the root becomes dead and keratinized, with a club shaped root. From 50 to 100 hairs in the Telogen stage are naturally lost every day. When an individual is experiencing significant or prolonged symptoms of emotional stress or illness, where the body’s immune system is compromised, as much as 70% of total hair follicles can prematurely enter into the Telogen phase, increasing hair loss (a condition called Telogen Effluvium).
These three natural phases of hair growth can be disrupted by many lifestyle, dietary and nutrition, and other personal health factors, as well as hereditary causes of pattern hair loss, or thinning. A dietary and nutritional approach, combined with minimally invasive hair restoration procedures, can help restore healthy growth and balance the natural phases of hair growth.
Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) Therapies for Hair Restoration
The ‘vampire facial’ has been a widely used method for using platelet rich plasma (PRP) to stimulate white blood cell production and rejuvenate facial skin, as part of anti-aging treatments. In recent years, the procedure has shown results for patients with hair thinning and hair loss, and it is a minimally invasive method of stimulating new hair growth.
The plasma of the blood is very rich in growth factors, that actively stimulate tissue regeneration. Growth factors help signal hair follicles to slow the progression during the Catagen phase (to retain the lifespan of the root) and can help reboot or recharge the Anagen phase below the surface of the scalp, to stimulate new hair growth in areas that have matured, which may not be producing new hair follicles at a rate the retains the thickness and volume of hair.
How Does PRP Work?
A small amount of blood is drawn from the patient’s arm, and then the sample is placed into a centrifuge, a medical device that spins the blood to separate the plasma from the red blood cells. The separated plasma (which contains the patients natural growth factors) are then injected directly into the scalp at the depth level of the hair follicles (or roots).
Injections are placed approximately every ½ inch across the treatment area, where hair is thinning. Patients begin to notice less shedding of hair within a week of treatment, and hair regrowth.
Treatments are generally planned at a once-per-month interval for about three to six months, depending on the extent of hair loss in the treatment area. Ongoing treatments are recommended to retain results and prevent further hair thinning or loss. Schedule a free consultation to learn more about this clinical procedure at La Font D’Medspa.