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What different types of hair loss are there and what are the best treatment options?

Hair loss has many causes and can be divided into different types. Each type requires a specific treatment to achieve the best results. Read on to find out exactly what types there are and how they should be treated.

Hereditary hair loss (androgenetic alopecia)

Androgenetic alopecia mainly affects men, though increasing numbers of women suffer from it too. In men, it’s an inherited hypersensitivity to a hormone produced by the body called DHT. It is made by a specific enzyme from testosterone, which is responsible for beard growth, muscle building, deep voice and body hair. In women, it can primarily – due to a hormonal imbalance in childbearing age – lead to thinning hair along the hairline. In such cases, however, it’s generally not referred to as hereditary hair loss. This type of hair loss is caused by increased testosterone levels.

In this particular case, treatment is much easier for women than for men, as women can usually resort to natural measures. Even if there is the option to gently influence the hormonal balance with herbal remedies in men, in most cases doctors will prescribe another treatment – for example, medication.

For successful treatment, the dermatologist must clarify any possible causes in advance. First, they ask questions about how long the patient has been losing hair, whether it’s noticeable in certain areas or whether it’s evenly distributed over the head. The dermatologist can then use a plucking test to find out how easily the hair comes off. They can also examine the hair under a microscope. In addition, laboratory results reveal whether hormone concentrations are in balance. Last but not least, an individually tailored treatment is carried out, which – after the cause has been eliminated – leads to regrowth. Specialised hairdressers, who can determine the causes using special cameras or trichology training, are able to recommend suitable treatments – or, more generally, a doctor.

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