Your hair has been thinning for a while now, and let's be frank - you're angry about it. As you should be. Learning that you're losing your hair is worse than finding out your mother was at the Capitol building on January 6th. Pretty bad, we know.
But what's the root cause of the issue? Why did you go from a beautiful head of hair and weekly barbershop trips to having the largest hat collection this side of the Mason Dixon line? We've done our research on the topic and now we're sharing it with you. So buckle up – let's get to the bottom of this.
The best place to start here is with DHT (dihydrotestosterone). If you're anything like us, you've heard of DHT because you've done your fair share of research trying to relive your glory days. DHT is an androgen (a male sex hormone) that causes male patterned baldness commonly referred to as androgenetic alopecia by your physician friends. DHT is a byproduct of testosterone. So ironically the same hormones that plays a major role in the body changes that come along with puberty (deep voice, body hair, pubic hair, etc.) also cause hair loss. So while early in your life DHT propels your transition from boy to man, it tends to come back around like a thief in the night and steal all of your joy. As a matter of fact, the statistics report that 2/3 of all American Men experience some kind of hair loss by the age of 35.
Our conclusion: DHT is your friend and your foe.
DHT essentially declares war on your hair follicles by shrinking them over time, resulting in thinner and smaller hair shafts. This doesn't happen to all though, there is a genetic pre-disposition that causes your hair follicles to be severely affected by DHT while others may have no issues. So that friend of yours that still has a head full of hair, it's not him, it's the genes. The last thing we'll mention is the myth that male pattern baldness lives on your maternal side. Too many men have given their mothers nasty looks blaming her for their hair loss. Word of advice, don't blame your mom, because if it wasn’t for her you would have never had that hair in the first place #perspective.
The Androgen Receptor gene is the gene that dictates how your hair follicles react to DHT. This specific gene lives on the X chromosome. Therefore if your grandfather on your mother's side also had male pattern baldness there is a much higher chance that you will also. So word from the wise, don't blame your mother, blame your grandpa. Now there isn't conclusive evidence to say that your father's genes didn't play a role in your balding and the latest scientific research says he is probably at fault as well. So let's just call this a family affair.
Interested in learning more about DHT and Male Pattern Baldness? Our friends over at HIMS discuss it here.