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Myths E-mail

Myth 1: Genes for hair loss come only from the mother's side of the family.

Although the inheritance from the mother's side is slightly stronger, androgenetic hair loss (common baldness) can be inherited from the mother's side of the family, the father's side - or both.

Myth 2: Men who are bald have high levels of testosterone.

This myth falls into the same category as the "size of a man's hands or feet..."  Hair loss is caused by a greater sensitivity of hair follicles in some parts of the scalp to DHT (dihydrotestosterone), rather than to increased levels of testosterone per se.  DHT causes the hair follicles to shrink (miniaturize) and eventually disappear.  If elevated levels of testosterone were the problem, then "all" of ones body hair should be expected to fall out as well. 

Myth 3: A sign of genetic baldness is seeing large amounts of hair fall out.

In contrast to popular belief, going bald is not due to massive amounts of hair falling out, but rather by normal thickness hair gradually being replaced by finer, thinner hairs - a process called "miniaturization." If large patches of hair start suddenly falling out, it is time to see your doctor.

Myth 4: Hair loss is caused by decreased blood flow to the scalp.

When your hair is growing, it does require a significant amount of blood flow.  Once you lose your hair, not as much blood is needed and the blood flow to the scalp decreases.  Therefore, a decreased blood flow to the scalp is not the cause of hair loss but a result of it.

Myth 5: Wearing hats makes you go bald.   

People who accuse their hats as being the cause of their hair loss think that wearing hats all the time prevents the scalp from breathing. Actually, hair follicles get oxygen from the blood stream, rather than from the air.  

Myth 6: Hair loss stops when you get older.

Once hair loss begins, it tends to progress over a person's lifetime and never completely stops.  However, the rate at which hair will continue to fall out is hard to guess. The younger you are when you start to lose your hair, the more likely you are to become very bald.
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