FUE Hair Transplants Plus 9 Other Ways to Combat Baldness
FUE hair transplants and other hair restoration options may suddenly be on your radar if you deal with thinning hair, shedding, a receding hairline, or bald spots. In your teens and 20s, you may not have imagined that you’d be researching and purchasing products to combat hair fallout or baldness down the road. The problem of progressive pattern baldness is prevalent among men and even up to half of all women.
It’s crucial to know that not everyone experiencing hair thinning needs FUE (follicular unit extraction) hair transplant to surgically restore the hair. There are numerous causes of hair loss, and it progresses at different rates for everyone. The solutions are varied too, and thankfully, a variety of treatments and combination therapies exist. Dr. Cory Torgerson offers hair restoration and a suite of services for men and women experiencing hair loss.
Let’s take a closer look at the leading hair transplant method in Toronto – FUE – and the other top choices for non-surgical hair restoration.
When is FUE hair transplant the optimal choice?
As soon as the first signs of a retreating hairline appear, you may rush to look up hair transplant before and after photos online, learn all about FUE hair transplants, and start saving for your procedure.
Before you dive in, you’ll benefit from expert, in-person analysis with a hair restoration specialist. The Toronto Hair Transplant Clinic offers a range of treatments to halt the fallout, promote scalp and follicle health, and surgically restore hair. FUE hair transplant in Toronto may be an option for you, but only if you’re a qualified candidate. There are a few criteria your surgeon will look for:
- You’ll need enough densely growing donor hair follicles. Typically, at the back and sides of the head, hair loss isn’t as pronounced. That is where follicle grafts will be harvested from during an FUE hair transplant. If your balding is severe, you may not have enough hair to redistribute.You should have progressive, genetic hair loss, not a temporary, health-related form of hair thinning. Your in-depth consultation will help determine why you’re losing hair. Most of the clients we treat at the THTC have androgenic alopecia, the common hereditary pattern hair loss known as male pattern baldness. (Women can also struggle with androgenic alopecia.)
- If a pattern of hair thinning or baldness runs in your family, you’ll likely know where yours is headed. Depending on the rate and stage of thinning, you may qualify for an FUE hair transplant treatment.
- To get the most from an FUE hair transplant, Dr. Torgerson’s patients must have realistic expectations. The surgical restoration of hair doesn’t create or add new hair to your head. Instead, it artfully, meticulously redistributes the density you have from one region to another. It can be beneficial for creating the illusion of fuller, denser hair, but it will not turn back the clock and return the abundant locks of your youth.
Is your hair thinning caused by genetic androgenic alopecia or not?
Though this is a common condition, there are other reasons you may be seeing more strands in the shower and on your pillow. Hairs fall out as part of the normal renewal cycle at a rate of roughly 100 per day. Your lifestyle, nutritional health, stress levels, scalp condition, and other factors might temporarily affect those numbers.
The reasons for follicle damage and shedding include:
- Colouring, perming, relaxing, and heat-styling the hair.
- Tight hairstyles like braids, dreadlocks, and ponytails can pull on the scalp so much that the follicles become damaged and bald spots appear. This is known as traction alopecia and is sometimes reversible.
- Deficiencies in vitamins and minerals such as iron are linked to hair loss. If you suddenly note a severe loss of hair, one of the first things your doctor will check for is anemia or other nutritional deficits.
- Uncontrolled severe and prolonged stress affects your hormone levels and, in turn, your hair. Temporarily, your hair growth and development of new strands can slow if you’re battling anxiety.
- One of the unavoidable factors that influence everyone is age-related cellular change. Many people experience gradual thinning and weakening of their hair when they pass the age of 50.
- Pregnancy and menopause are major factors for female hair loss. It’s not uncommon to lose a substantial number of strands after giving birth, and again during menopause. The management of nutrition, hormones, and stress at these times can help get things back to normal.
- Deprivation/crash dieting is a culprit in hair fallout. Depriving yourself of calories and nutrients will lead to weight loss in most cases, but inevitably change hair and skin for the worse.
- Certain medications are linked to hair loss. Your doctor can discuss the expected side effects of your prescriptions with you.
- Less common reasons for shedding include illness or surgery.
After you’ve had a chance to share your unique situation and your scalp has been examined, your surgeon will offer feedback and make some recommendations. The Toronto Hair Transplant Clinic provides FUE hair transplants in many cases when the hair loss is permanent and if sufficient donor supply exists.
The follicular unit extraction method will allow the surgeon to excise tiny micro-grafts one by one and transplant them to the thinning regions. The openings created by the hand-held rotary punch tool are so small that they close within just a few days. Scarring from an FUE hair transplant is typically so minimal that it can’t easily be seen and blends well into the remaining hair. Patients love this option, because it can deliver a “scar-free” look and natural, permanent results.
After a hair transplant, you can wash, cut, and style your hair without any fuss or maintenance concerns. An FUE hair transplant can be done several times, if needed. The traditional “strip method” transplants of the past came with a longer recovery time and left a long scalp scar. Follicular unit extraction usually has patients back to work within a week. The full results require patience and will take 8 months to 1 year.
Platelet-rich plasma therapy (PRP) uses your blood platelets and the many growth factors that they contain to stimulate hair growth and decrease inflammation. A fast, non-surgical treatment in the comfort of your hair specialist’s office can be done in conjunction with an FUE hair transplant or on its own.
PRP injected to the scalp has been shown to promote hair growth where follicles are present. The hair is nourished, and new blood supply stimulated, which shows denser growth and thicker hair shafts after treatment. PRP is typically performed in a series of 3 or 4 sessions, so PRP clients will usually see results after a few months and can maintain them with 1 or 2 treatments per year.
Hair-thinning shampoos are available over the counter, and you may see a few varieties stocked at the local pharmacy. It’s crucial to talk with your hair specialist about the ingredients that may (or may not) benefit you. Plenty of labels claim to “grow thicker hair”. They may contain amino acids, vitamins, and essential oils. They may contain medications or ingredients that function as DHT blockers (DHT is the hormone responsible for male pattern baldness). While they will not grow hair where there are no active follicles, hair loss shampoos can help improve thin or thinning hair.
Healthy hair depends on good health. Most people who eat a balanced diet won’t experience malnutrition to the degree that their hair falls out. However, in cases of iron anemia, restrictive diets, or deficiencies, it is possible for hair, skin, and nails to suffer. You need protein, iron, zinc, folic acid, and more to see healthy, shiny hair. Talk to your primary care physician about your health and nutrition. They may order blood tests to determine your needs and rule out other issues. Vitamins and herbal supplements have a reputation for being “natural” and “healthy,” yet they can be harmful in the wrong formulations or doses. Talk to your doctor before proceeding with supplements to boost your hair growth.
If you are planning to have an FUE hair transplant, being in excellent health can help you heal fast without any complications.
Omega-3 and omega-6 are essential fatty acids. They can’t be manufactured by your body, so they must be consumed in whole foods that contain healthy fats. Omega-3 is linked to reduced inflammation, and inflammation is linked to premature hair loss in some people. Omega-6 is connected to overall skin health. Most people can take a quality fish oil supplement to improve their hair, skin, and nails. Ask your doctor if supplementing could be right for you.
Commonly known as Rogaine, this hair loss treatment is a topical product applied to the scalp. Available as liquid or foam, men and women can use Minoxidil to thicken hair and halt fallout. This product is meant to be applied to the scalp twice per day, and it may take 2 to 6 months for the full effects to be seen. Minor side effects like scalp irritation and itching do occur. While many people report slowed hair loss with the use of this product, the results disappear once they are discontinued, and it won’t grow hair back where you are bald. Ask your doctor for a full list of pros and cons related to Rogaine.
Finasteride is also known as Propecia. This is a prescription hair loss medication for men only. Taken in pill form daily, finasteride’s effects are similar to Minoxidil in that it’s known to slow or stop hair loss as long as the patient is using it. There are some unpleasant side effects associated with its use that you will need to discuss with your doctor before starting treatment.
Low-level laser therapy has now been cleared by Health Canada and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for use at home. Usually available in the form of combing devices and caps, these futuristic-looking LLLT tools are designed to stimulate blood flow and target the DHT that damages follicles. They need to be used only briefly a few times per week. The results take several months due to the natural growth cycles, but this is a completely painless, non-invasive treatment with minimal risk, which makes it appealing to many people. FUE hair transplants are often complimented with PRP and LLLT for rapid results.
Known as SMP or hair tattoos, micropigmentation uses tiny tools to place pigment just under the scalp skin. The pattern and direction of your hair growth along with careful colour matching leads to a hyper-realistic look. Patients can have longer “strands” marked on the scalp to create the illusion of thicker hair.
For people who are bald or don’t want to undergo FUE for any other reason, tattooing is a low-maintenance and stylish alternative. SMP can deposit tiny “stubble-like” hairs across the scalp to create the impression of a freshly shaved head. Clients who opt for SMP find that the aesthetic works well in the corporate world or the casual world. The results fade after roughly 5 years and will need to be touched up.
What’s Next? Schedule Your Consultation
If you’re losing your hair and are looking for solutions, you need to see the hair experts in person. Planning your customized treatment begins with a no-obligation consultation at the THTC. Whether selecting an FUE hair transplant to permanently, dramatically transform your look or one of many popular alternatives, there’s likely a solution to regain your hair and confidence. Contact the Toronto Hair Transplant Clinic and let us walk you through the next steps. We look forward to meeting you.