The main hair restoration options today
The two main options for restoring lost hair are reversing hair loss naturally by partial or complete regrowth and surgical/cosmetic hair restoration. Regrowing lost hair, though a dream of millions of hair loss sufferers, is very difficult to achieve and full regrowth is usually only possible in some types of baldness such as alopecia areata, telogen effluvium or hair loss caused by chemotherapy treatment. Majority of people, however, suffer from hereditary form of baldness which is caused by gradual decay of hair follicles under the negative influence of dihydrotestosterone. In such patients it is only possible to regrow hair lost in the past two years. Hair lost ages ago is gone for ever. The only remaining options for them are hair surgery (if they can afford it financially and if they have enough donor hair at the back of their head) and cosmetic hair replacement using wigs and other hair systems as well as hair thickeners and hair loss concealers. It goes without saying that in order to achieve best results a combination of several approaches must be used. Thus, a patient who had his hair transplanted can be using hair thickeners to make his hair appear fuller and at the same time use some hair loss treatment such as Propecia in order to prevent further loss of hair.
Researches from the Yale University have found out recently that fat cells in the skin can initiate hair regrowth by interacting with dormant stem cells in the hair follicles of the bald scalp. Bald people still have stem cells in the roots of their hair follicles that normally grow hair but they are for some reason unable to regenerate hair so that they went to sleep.
Although this research, mainly conducted by the US medical device firm Follica is yet in the initial stage of development there are already some, scientifically non-proven devices such as scalproller that base their effectiveness on this approach. Similar devices to the scalproller, called dermarollers, have been used to treat acne scars and wrinkles for some time, and to increase the penetration of skincare products. Scalproller uses tiny needles that penetrate into the scalp’s upper skin layers causing light damages that are said to induce new hair growth.
The only hair loss therapy that does not sound too uncomfortable to the patient is the hair loss shampoo since we are required to use shampoos to wash our hair for our entire life anyway. Hair loss shampoos often contain the same ingredients as some herbal or natural hair loss treatments but they are only applied to your hair for about five minutes while you wash your hair, which you have to do anyway. So, they are supposed to treat your hair loss at practically no additional effort needed.
Hair multiplication, also known as hair cloning, is amongst the most promising future treatments for hair loss that are being currently examined. The main focus of this method is to overcome the shortage of donor hair, which happens to be the main weakness of hair transplantation. The number of donor hair and so the amount of hair that can be used is limited as hair transplantation simply consists in moving hair from the back and from the sides of one’s scalp to the balding area. The
aim of hair multiplication is to grow new hair follicles in vitro and then inject these newly grown cells into the balding area where they would induce new hair growth.
The human hair grows at a speed of 1mm in about three days, which is around 1cm a month. In some people it can be a bit more but no more than 1.2cm a month. So, when you realize that the average hair growth cycle lasts about three to six years it does not seem possible to grow hair to become two meters long. Now, let’s assume six years is the maximum length of a hair growth cycle and you have not cut your hair in the past six years and your hair is not breaking. During the whole period your hair was growing at the maximum rate of 1.2cm a month.