If you’re worried about balding as you age, you’re not alone. Over 35 million men in the US are balding, so this is a common issue. Maybe that’s why there is so much misinformation surrounding male pattern baldness as people seek to understand it. So, what’s the truth behind all the male pattern baldness myths you’ve likely heard? Look at four of the most common myths and what makes them simply untrue.
It may be true that you’re more likely to start balding with age, as about 85% of men over 50 are balding, according to the American Hair Loss Association. But millions of men start balding far younger than that. For about 25% of the men who end up with male pattern baldness, it starts before age 21. Technically, you can start balding at any point after puberty, so this issue can affect men of nearly any age.
Don’t let male pattern baldness myths like this one stop you from wearing your favorite hat, because hats do not cause you to lose hair. This myth claims that you need to let your scalp breathe, and that wearing hats too often can deprive your hair follicles of oxygen, causing hair loss. But the simple fact is that your hair follicles get oxygen from your bloodstream, not the air around your head. Go ahead and wear that baseball cap, cowboy hat, or whatever head covering suits you best.
Maybe you’ve heard there are many reasons behind going bald. For about 95% of men, male pattern baldness is the cause of hair loss. Also known as androgenetic alopecia, male pattern baldness causes you to lose hair gradually because a specific hormone shortens the growth cycle of your hair. If this applies to you, you might notice a receding hairline or thinning crown, and you’ll slowly lose more hair over the years.
One of the most popular myths is that you should look at your maternal grandfather’s hairline to see if you’ll experience hair loss. According to the myth, if he’s balding, so will you. While it’s true that hair loss is hereditary, it’s not just about your mother’s father. The truth is that hair loss is a polygenic trait, which means you should look at the hairline of everyone in your family. The more balding men there are in your family, the more likely you are to go bald, as well. On the other hand, if your parents, siblings, uncles, and cousins all have full heads of hair, you might not end up dealing with hair loss after all.
These are just some of the most common myths about male pattern baldness. If you’ve ever heard them, now you know the truth, which is helpful if you’re trying to decide what to do about hair loss. If you have any questions about male pattern baldness or want to know how we can help, please contact us today.