More than 50 million men and millions of women suffer from hair loss, and more specifically, male pattern baldness. In recent years there has been a surge of information regarding this condition and many treatments are now available as a result. But, what causes this condition, and how is it treated?
What Is DHT?
Hair loss, alopecia, or more commonly known as male pattern baldness, is due to a higher than normal level of a hormone known as DHT. Dihydrotestosterone or DHT is an androgen or sex hormone produced by the body. Testosterone is converted to DHT and is responsible for the development of male characteristics, such as a deeper voice, body and facial hair, and muscle tone common among men as they reach puberty and grow and develop.
DHT, like all hormones is found in women but in substantially lower levels, thus explaining why some women can develop hair loss. While DHT is responsible for things like hair growth it is also responsible for hair loss. So, the question then is how can this hormone be the cause of both?
How DHT Works
There are four phases of hair growth and these phases are affected by the level of DHT found in the body. Too little DHT can delay puberty and the other effects on the body. Too much DHT causes the hair follicles to shrink resulting in the loss of hair that many experience. High DHT levels shorten the growth phases and eventually the follicles shrink, producing no hair.
Why Are Some People More Susceptible?
There appears to be a genetic link in individuals that develop male pattern baldness. These people have something known as an androgen receptor gene that effects how many receptors there are to attract DHT. So, people with the genetic markers are more susceptible to developing hair loss than those without.
There are products available on the market called DHT blockers. They block DHT’s ability to bind to these receptors resulting in hair growth. Products are available without a prescription are less effective. DHT blockers, when used right, will restore hair growth, and help you look your best again.
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