Hair loss, Thinning Hair or Baldness, whether permanent or temporary, finally has a cure to a great extent. Treatments are now available to stop hair loss, thinning hair, make hair stronger from the roots, promote hair growth or hide hair loss.
For some types of Alopecia, hair may resume growth without any form of treatment. Hair loss resulting from Telogen Effluvium or drug side effects usually requires no treatment. Hair loss from poor nutrition or medical illnesses or infections usually stops with a healthy diet and treatment of the underlying medical condition.
However, the need for quality products, shampoos, conditioners, styling gels, serums and hair supplements should never be under-estimated for as sensitive a matter as hair health. It is only quality products that are pH balanced, gentle and containing balanced concentration of ingredients, fortified with the desired nutrition of hair root, that would ensure lasting health of this increasingly important part of human persona.
The Treatments presently available for stopping Hair loss and Thinning Hair can be classified into two categories –
1. Allopathic Drugs:
- The word ‘Drug’ itself is something all of us want to steer clear of and shudder at the very thought of their usage. In our daily routine, with fast paced life, many of us may pop a pill of any Over the Counter (OTC) medication for immediate relief without realizing the side-effects that may be accompanied. Side-effects with once a while intake of any medication may be negligible but with prolonged usage of any allopathic drug, side-effects and adverse reactions are imminent. Probably no allopathic medication may be an exception to this. And if the prolonged usage extends to a life-long usage, the associated hassles make the problems cumulative. And that’s exactly what the FDA approved topical application as a treatment of Androgenetic Alopecia for hair loss – Minoxidil is.
- ” Minoxidil , developed as a tablet for hypertension by a pharmaceutical company in the United States, Upjohn, today known as Pharmacia & Upjohn had a curious side effect whereby patients using Minoxidil tablets grew body hair. Upjohn, realizing the commercial aspect worked over it and within a few years, Minoxidil was approved by the FDA as the first treatment for hair loss. The mechanism of action of Minoxidil in it’s working in hair loss cases, however, remains unknown till date . Once the patent for Minoxidil expired, various companies started commercial production of Generic Minoxidil. Most companies produce the Minoxidil 2% concentration (for men and women) whilst some produce the Minoxidil 5% concentration (for men only). Generic Minoxidil also includes Minoxidil with additives like Azelaic Acid or Progesterone or Tretinoin or Finasteride or Nicotinate. Recently, a few companies have managed a mix of Minoxidil 12. 5% concentration. Available as a non-prescription drug, it is available under various trade names like Mintop, Tugaine, Rogaine/Regaine, Loniten, Ronoxidil, etc. “
- Minoxidil use is indicated for central ( vertex ) or top of head, balding only. It does not seem capable of reducing DHT or the enzyme, 5-alpha reductase responsible for its accumulation around the hair follicle, which is the main cause of male pattern baldness in genetically susceptible individuals. Therefore, when treatment is stopped, the DHT already accumulated around the follicle has its expected effect and the follicle usually shrinks again and eventually dies. Thus, Minoxidil needs a life-long application for sustained results and this reversible nature of the application is it’s biggest handicap . Like all drugs, the side-effects of Minoxidil are enormous. There always seems to be a case of suppression of data or a presentation of ambiguous facts when it comes to honest reporting of side-effects by the manufacturing pharma companies. Even medical practitioners have increasingly been found lacking in their commitment of informing consumers about the possible adverse reactions Minoxidil may have [In Britain, Minoxidil cannot be prescribed on the National Health Service]. The net is replete with such feedbacks and many go unreported [ Click here for more info on this ].
2. Common side effects of Minoxidil:
- Include burning or irritation of the eye; itching; redness or irritation at the treated area; unwanted hair growth elsewhere on the body. Severe allergic reactions (rash; hives; itching; difficulty breathing, especially when lying down; tightness in the chest; swelling of the mouth, face, lips, or tongue); chest pain; dizziness; fainting; fast heartbeat; sudden, unexplained weight gain; swollen hands or feet. Side effects of oral Minoxidil may include swelling of the stomach, face and extremities, rapid and irregular heartbeat, lightheadedness, cardiac lesions and focal necrosis of the papillary muscle and sub-endocardial areas of the left ventricle. Adverse reactions also include irritation of the skin, itching, contact dermatitis , and dryness of the scalp or flaking. There have been cases of allergic reactions to Minoxidil or the non-active ingredient propylene glycol , which is found in some forms of topical Rogaine. Pseudo-acromegaly, associated with insulin resistance, is another reported side effect of Minoxidil.
- Finasteride (marketed by Merck under the trademark names Proscar and Propecia , also available under several generic names) is a synthetic anti-androgen that acts by inhibiting Type II 5-alpha reductase , the enzyme that converts testosterone to dihydrotestosterone (DHT). Finasteride was initially approved by the USFDA in 1992 under the brand name Proscar, a treatment for benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH). In 1997, the FDA approved finasteride to treat male pattern baldness (MPB) under the brand name Propecia. Dutasteride is another brand.
- There is not sufficient evidence that Propecia works for receding hairlines at the temples. Finasteride / Propecia / Proscar / Dutasteride are for the treatment of male pattern hair loss in men only and should NOT be used by women or children. In an independent study conducted by dermatologists over a period of five years, it has been shown that Propecia has been effective only in 48% cases for hair regrowth and much lesser – 42% for stopping hair loss.
- In general use, the reported side effects of Finasteride have been: allergic reactions including rash, itching, hives, and swelling of the lips and face, problems with ejaculation, breast tenderness and enlargement and testicular pain. Other side effects that may occur include lump in the breast, nipple discharge, inability to urinate. A very serious allergic reaction to this drug is unlikely, but not ruled out. Symptoms of a serious allergic reaction may include rash, itching/swelling (especially of the face/tongue/throat), severe dizziness , trouble breathing. Finasteride [ Pregnancy Category X Drug ], in whatever form, is a treatment for males only, as it can have an effect on the sex organs of unborn male offspring if taken by females. In men, Finasteride can cause side effects, such as loss of sexual appetite or difficulty in obtaining an erection and a decreased volume of semen. Though it was believed earlier that the side-effects of Finasteride disappear after its intake is discontinued, there are recent reports that this may not exactly be true. And not to forget that like Minoxidil, results vanish in about 6 months after the therapy is discontinued.
- What effect an “FDA approved Drug” may cause on any human metabolism may be gauged from this extract reproduced from the official Propecia website:” Women must not use Propecia and should not handle crushed or broken Propecia tablets because the active ingredient may cause abnormalities of a male baby’s difficulty sex organs”[ More reading on the reported ill effects of Finasteride, please click here ]
- Whilst it has been claimed by manufacturing Pharma companies that side-effects reported in men who used Finasteride was limited to just 2%, one is never sure as to which user would fall in this 2%. With the low success percentage accompanied with frightening side-effects, it always remains a question whether irt’s worth taking a risk. Is hair more important than adulthood?
3. Complementary Medicine:
- ” Alternative Medicine ” is a broad domain of healing that does not fall within the realm of conventional medicine. It uses a holistic approach to complement the body’s natural healing process and includes Ayurveda, Acupuncture, Homeopathy, Unani, Siddha, Naturopathic Medicine, Tibetan Medicine and traditional Chinese Medicine. Due to a low level of emphasis on scientific research and clinical trials in Alternative Medicine, stemming from a low commercial interest and commercial funding by national governments worldwide, skepticism about their efficacy remains. However, combined with proven science, medical systems and practices, this takes the form of Complementary Medicine. It is a very different approach than the traditional Western medicine in which a heartless medication and technology are the only focus; Complementary Medicine encompasses science and technology with a humane touch and is now being referred to as Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM) . Although heterogeneous, the major CAM systems have many common characteristics, including a focus on individualizing treatments, treating the whole person and recognizing the nature of metabolism of each individual. In addition, many CAM systems have characteristics commonly found in mainstream health care, such as a focus on good nutrition and preventive practices. Unlike mainstream medicine, CAM often lacked and had only a limited experimental and clinical study; however, recently, scientific investigation of CAM is beginning to address this knowledge gap. Thus, boundaries between CAM and mainstream medicine, as well as among different CAM systems, are often blurred and are constantly changing.
- A lot of so called Herbal, Ayurvedic, Unani and Homeopathic remedies for hair/scalp problems have flooded the Indian market recently. This has left the gullible consumer confused and it is becoming increasingly difficult to distinguish genuinely effective products from the ones that make hyped claims. The only method left to distinguish this is to introduce a transparency and a background of scientific temper in the process. A good product must have distinguishable genuine strength stemming from its ingredients as it is only these that make a product stronger. Products intending to survive under the garb of rhetoric or glossy advertisements or heresay ‘secret formulas’ or before/after pictures must be shunned.
- The essence in CAM is to get a product that promotes TOTAL HAIR/SCALP WELLNESS , without drugs and harmful chemicals, is proven to be gentle for human application, has ample balanced fortification, has a fair degree of scientific research behind its formulation, has undergone a fair degree of clinical trials and stood the scrutiny of an acclaimed Certification process. A delivery mechanism that works in Preventive as well as Curative process without the fear of side-effects would be an ideal concept.
- The ingredients that have been distinguishably noted and researched to get the best results for hair loss are Saw Palmetto, Roobois Extract, Kelp, Fo-Ti, Stinging Nettle, Gingko Biloba, Burdock Root Extract, Aloe Vera, Jojoba Oil, Polysorbate 80, Birch Bark Extract, Sage Extract, Silica, Rosemary Extract, Chamomile Extract, Panthenol (Vitamin B5), Vitamin E, Inositol, Biotin, Niacin, Grapefruit Seed Extract, HempSeed Oil, Green Tea, Niacin, Capsicum & Willowherb extract, Hydrolysed Wheat Protein, CoQ enzyme and Horsetail extract. [ Detailed reading on these, please click here ]. Absence from harmful surfactants should be another aspect as these are one big cause of hair loss that work dastardly in conjunction with highly chlorinated / polluted water.
- A product range that gets the most or all of the above would be the perfect solution for hair loss, thinning hair and all other hair and scalp related problems. The ‘Segals Solutions Program’ stands tall and the undisputed leader amongst all the hair care, maintenance and treatment lines in the world. It is an OTC product, classified under the CAM category, based on the concept of high-class hair-root nutrition. No other product range except Segals Solutions has been successful as yet to get all the listed ingredients as part of one single formulation â€“ in a topical as well as oral form . All others remain either unsuccessful copies with only a fraction of the ingredients as goes in the making of Segals Solutions or are in various stages of infancy in developing the technique to generate the right recipe of success with a right mechanism of deriving the right actives from these ingredients. The best thing is that Segals Solutions delivers without side-effects. Further, results are comprehensive, long-lasting and there is no fear of any reversal even after discontinuation, as in the case of Minoxidil and Finasteride . Since it is a scientifically developed product range based on a wellness concept, it works for men and women, of all ages and in all stages of hair loss. Controlled studies show a better efficiency of the working of Segals Solutions via Propecia.
- Combine with your tailor made ‘Segals Solutions Program’ , a healthy, stress-free lifestyle and get a head full of strong hair, right from the roots for life. If as a discerning quality conscious person, you settle for nothing below the best and healthy hair with a clear, rejuvenated scalp is what you are aspiring for, even without any noticeable hair / scalp problems, Segals Solutions products should be your natural choice for being used as a complete regimen.