Baby, it’s cold outside. And while all that heat your furnace is pumping out might keep you nice and toasty, it can also leave you with dry, itchy skin and scalp, not to mention static-plagued hair. What can you do to combat these common cold weather hair problems? Read on to find out.

Dry, Itchy Scalp

Your scalp is just as susceptible to dryness from low humidity and cold just as your skin. However, unlike your skin, you can’t simply slather on the lotion to get relief from the itching and flaking. Here’s what you can do instead:

  • Shampoo less often to maintain as much natural oil on your scalp as possible. Thick, coarse hair can wait a week between washes while thinner, fine hair can stretch to two or three days If it’s difficult to go that long, try rinsing your hair with lukewarm water and apply a conditioner to the mid-shafts and ends of hair for that just-washed feeling without the drying effects.
  • Soothe and hydrate the scalp with a weekly scalp mask. Shampoo after applying the mask and message it with your fingertips to loosen dead skin and allow the ingredients in the mask to penetrate.

Dry and Brittle Hair

The combination of cold air outside and dry indoor air depletes your hair and skin of its natural moisture. If you enjoy hot, steamy showers, that only makes matters worse, as does using cleansing and styling products containing sulfates and other harsh ingredients that strip your hair of moisture and can cause it to become brittle. To help reduce the damage, follow these tips:

  • Check product labels to avoid sulfates, parabens, harsh detergents, alcohol, and other ingredients that can dry out your hair. Choose products that are moisturizing and hydrating and formulated for your hair type.
  • Once again, stretch the time between washes to lock in natural oils that keep hair hydrated. Use a dry shampoo formulated with clean ingredients to refresh your roots between washes.
  • When washing your hair, turn down the water temp down to lukewarm or slightly above. This will help keep your skin moist, too.

Static and Fly-Aways

Exposing hair to dry, cold air can create an electrical charge. You’ve witnessed the effect when taking off your hat indoors.

  • Hydrated hair is heavier and more difficult to lift, so using a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner can help reduce static and fly-aways.
  • Swap out your regular comb and hairbrush for a metal comb to combat static.
  • Add a heat protecting product before heat styling. Better yet, apply a leave-in conditioner and let hair dry naturally, then style gently with a wand or flat iron on the lowest hat setting.
  • For on the go fixes, rub a small drop of face or hand lotion between your palms and gently pat down fly-away strands being sure to avoid the roots. Or use a spritz of hairspray or run an anti-frizz hair sheet over the hair’s top layer to tame static.

Who know it would take this much work and attention to detail to wash away the winter blues? But hey, at least you still have all your hair…or do you? If things are thinning out a little or you have plain-to-see bald spots, join the many people in the same boat and contact DiStefano Hair Restoration Center. We have multiple ways to restore your head of hair to its natural glory, and we’re eager to tell you all about them.

So, you’re considering a hair transplant. Or you’ve already scheduled a consultation. Great news – you’re one step closer to enjoying a fuller head of hair and looking like the best version of you!

With that in mind, post-transplant care is the best way to ensure the success of the surgery and minimize the risk of infection. Read on to learn some things you’ll want to avoid once you come home.

Driving – If your surgery was performed under strong sedation, avoid driving for the next 24 hours or as recommended by your surgeon. Plan to get a ride to and from your appointment.

Sleeping Flat – Sleep with your head elevated for the first 5 to 7 days after surgery to reduce the risk of swelling.

Ignoring Medication Labels – Whether prescription or over-the-counter, take all medications exactly as prescribed to mitigate infection risk and ensure accurate dosages. Follow precautions such as taking medication with food or not operating heavy machinery.

Forgetting RICE – We’re all familiar with the RICE technique (rest, ice, compression, elevate) to treat swelling and inflammation. When applying ice, do so for 15 to 20 minutes just above the eyebrows a few times a day until swelling and discomfort subside.

Washing Your Hair – Do not wash your hair for the first 48 hours post-transplant. You may gently wash your hair on the third day but do not stream water directly onto the scalp.

Dyeing Your Hair – The chemicals in hair dye can compromise the success of your procedure, so forego that experience for the first four weeks after your hair transplant. If you color your hair regularly, consider having it done shortly before surgery instead.

Sleeping on Your Stomach – Avoid rubbing your new hairline against a pillow for the first week after surgery. If you toss and turn in your sleep, try a weighted blanket or sleep on a recliner.

Getting Some Sun – Do not expose your scalp to direct sunlight for the first two weeks following a hair transplant, especially between the hours of 10AM and 2PM when the sun’s rays are strongest.

Exercising – Avoid rigorous exercise or any form of exertion that makes you sweat and increases heart rate in the days immediately following surgery. Keep your heart rate and blood pressure in a normal, safe range.

Drinking and Smoking – Alcohol is a diuretic, which means it dehydrates you. It can also elevate your blood pressure. Smoking also elevates blood pressure. Avoid both after surgery, and if possible, quit smoking at lease 30 days before.

Ignoring Diet – Nutrition is key in growing thick, healthy hair – transplant or not. Eat foods containing calcium, magnesium, protein, iron, biotin, protein, and more. Avoid soda, greasy food, baked goods, and food high in sugar.

Yes, there’s a lot to keep in mind both before and after hair transplant surgery, but the good and experienced folks at DiStefano Hair Restoration are here to guide you every step of the way. Take the next bold step and call today to schedule a FREE consultation.

 

A new year marks an opportunity to start fresh, set reasonable goals, and invest more in yourself – and that includes your hair. Whether you’re the “wash ‘n go” type, have been sporting the same cut and style for decades, or are noticing changes like thinning or balding, now’s a great time to some hair resolutions for healthier, better-looking locks.

Stick with a cleansing system formulated for your hair. Mixing and matching can be fun, but when it comes to your hair, stick with products from the same hair system as they are likely formulated to be used together. By picking a shampoo from one line, conditioner from another, and a deep conditioning mask from yet another, you might not realize the best results.

Turn down the water temperature. A steaming hot shower can feel luxurious, especially during these cold winter months, but scorching hot water can strip your hair of its natural moisture. Dial it down to as close to lukewarm as you can manage.

Exfoliate your scalp. Healthy hair starts with a healthy scalp. If you find that your hair feels and looks weighed down, a scalp scrub might be the answer to remove product build-up. Then, closely examine your hair care products – are they filled with ingredients that don’t wash away clean? If so, ditch them.

Reduce tension. This is sage advice for your life and hair alike. Tight ponytails, buns, and braids can put stress on your hair and cause breakage. Instead, choose loose, low ponytails and buns and use scrunchies over elastics if you must pull your hair back away from your face.

Go au natural. Heat-styling is one of the worst offenders for hair damage. Air dry as often as possible and if you must use a blow dryer, flat iron, or other heat-producing product, first apply a heat protectant to your hair first and select the lowest heat setting.

Give temporary color a try. Regular permanent coloring can damage your hair over time, leading to split ends, dryness, and breakage. Try a temporary dye that washes out in a few shampoos. Bonus: you can play with color without the commitment or consequences!

Don’t over-wash. Frequent washing strips your hair of its natural oils and can lead to dryness. Try washing just 2 to 3 times a week and use a high-quality dry shampoo in between washes. Keep in mind it might take your hair a few days to adjust to this new routine.

Add in a deep conditioning treatment. If your hair is dry or you color or heat-style frequently, give it some love with a deep conditioning treatment. Make sure the product you choose is free of harmful chemicals and is formulated for your hair type.

Make hair care a priority. Whether it’s getting regular trims, giving yourself a relaxing scalp massage, or finally seeing someone about that receding hairline or thinning, make your hair a part of your self-care routine.

Man or woman, we hope you’re not experiencing hair loss to any significant degree. If you are, don’t despair. Instead, pick up the phone and call DiStefano Hair Restoration Center for a free consultation. It could prove to be your best move of the New Year.

 

Thick or fine, straight or curly, healthy or dry – when we think of hair, we often think of its texture, length, and appearance. Yet it’s the follicle, a small pocket-like hole in the skin, that determines your hair type and is responsible for its growth.

Today we’re exploring the life of a hair follicle – what it is and how it grows hair. Of course, if you have concerns about your hair growth or the health of your scalp, consult your primary care physician or dermatologist.

What is a Hair Follicle?

Hair follicles are small tunnel-like holes in the outer layer of our skin that grow hair. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, the average person has approximately 100,000 follicles on the scalp alone. The root of a single hair is made up of protein cells and nourished by blood from blood vessels. As more protein cells are created, the hair begins to grow through the skin, reaching the surface. Sebaceous glands located near hair follicles produce oil naturally that nourishes the skin and hair.

The Life of a Hair Follicle

The average person’s hair grows about half an inch each month. Factors such as age, overall health, and hair type affect the rate at which one’s hair grows. In addition to being responsible for growth, the shape of hair follicles also determines how curly your hair is; oval follicles produce curly hair while circular follicles produce straight hair.

What’s more, hair follicles help determine color. Just like your skin color, hair color gets its pigment from one of two types of melanin: pheomelanin or eumelanin. This melanin is stored in hair follicle cells. Which one you have and how much pigment is determined by your genetics. Pheomelanin makes hair black. On the other hand, an abundance of eumelanin produces black hair, a moderate amount produces brown, while very little will result in blonde hair. As you age, follicles lose their ability to produce melanin resulting in gray or white hair.

Hair Growth Cycle

There are three distinct phases of the hair growth cycle. The Anagen phase is the growth phase where hair begins to grow from the root. This phase lasts between three and seven years. The Catagen phase is when the rate of growth slows down, and the follicles shrink. This transitional phase lasts between two and four months. And finally, the telogen phase is the resting phase. Old hair falls out and is replaced with new growth from the same follicle. This resting phase lasts between three and four months.

When a hair is pulled out of the follicle, it usually regrows. However, a damaged follicle can stop producing hair. While it’s not yet possible to restimulate a damaged follicle, there are a variety of options available to those experiencing hair loss and balding. If you’re among that group, there’s no better time to schedule a FREE consultation with the DiStefano Hair Restoration Center medical team. We’ll analyze the cause of your hair loss, explain your options, and recommend the right course of action just as we do for all our patients.

Anyone’s hair can feel dry at some point. Perhaps you’ve been relying too much on heat styling or are using the wrong hair care products. But if left untreated, dry hair can become brittle, causing it to fray or break easily. In most cases, the condition can be treated with the consistent right care and a few simple lifestyle changes.

So, if you notice your hair isn’t as soft and healthy as it once was, here’s how to reverse the damage and, at the same time, prevent hair loss.

Dry Hair Defined

Healthy hair consists of two layers. Natural oils in the outer layer protect the inner layer, also reflecting light giving it a shiny appearance. But when hair doesn’t retain or get enough moisture, the outer layer breaks down causing hair to appear frizzy and dull. Dry hair can affect anyone but you’re more likely to develop it as you age.

Causes

Several factors can lead to dry hair, including:

  • Hair care products and habits – washing hair too often, frequent heat-styling, dying or chemical treatments, use of harsh products
  • Environmental conditions – hot and dry climate, a lot of time in the sun or on windy day, and frequent swimming in salty or chlorinated water
  • Physical health – malnutrition, hypoparathyroidism, hypothyroidism, Menkes syndrome, among others.

If your hair is severely dry and does not improve with changes to your hair care routine, consult your primary care doctor or dermatologist to pinpoint the underlying cause.

Treatment 

In many cases, dry hair can be treated with lifestyle and hair care adjustments, including the following:

  • Don’t wash your hair daily but do condition it with a hydrating condition every time you wash.
  • Use a moisturizing shampoo, conditioner, and other hair products formulated for you hair type.
  • Avoid chemical hair treatments and take breaks between hair coloring.
  • Do keep up with regular cuts and trims to help keep split ends away.
  • Avoid frequent heat styling.
  • Protect your hair from heat and sun exposure
  • Wear a bathing cap when swimming in chlorinated or salty water.

On the plus side, your hair can’t be dry if you don’t have any. And yet, on the flip side, consistently dry hair can lead to hair loss. So yes, do take care to treat your hair with TLC. But if yours already is damaged and thinning, don’t wait another day before contacting DiStefano Hair Restoration Center for a free restoration so we can explore one or more paths to replace what’s missing.

 

Whether recreational or medicinal, there is vast scientific and anecdotal evidence suggesting that marijuana has anti-anxiety, anti-psychotic, and anti-cancer properties. Cannabis (in various forms) can also be used to provide relief to adults suffering from chronic pain, seizures, muscle spasms, and glaucoma.

As for the impact on hair, some regular smokers claim that it thickens their hair while others report no significant changes, positive or negative. On the other hand, one can find evidence to suggest that marijuana use sometimes triggers hair loss. The truth is, people have vastly different physiological and emotional responses to marijuana, including how hair follicles respond to it.

Physiological Effects  

Marijuana contains over one hundred chemicals called cannabinoids, with the two best known being THC and CBD. They are similar to a class of chemicals the human body naturally produces called endocannabinoids that attach to receptors in various organs, including hair follicles. The THC in marijuana attaches to these receptors in a similar fashion and, in doing so, can inhibit the growth of the human hair follicle, according to a 2007 study conducted by the University of Debrecen. This means that cannabinoids can inhibit proper development and growth of the hair shaft, thus inducing hair loss.

Lifestyle Effects 

Cortisol, a hormone produced naturally within the human body during periods of stress, is known to affect the function and cyclic regulation of the hair follicle. Contrary to popular belief, THC can increase cortisol levels in the body. This can trigger telogen effluvium, an acute form of hair loss that occurs when hair follicles enter the telogen phase of the cycle prematurely.

Frequent cannabis use also can lead to poor nutritional choices. A diet lacking in essential vitamins and minerals can lead to poor hair health, including dryness, breakage, and even thinning or loss.

What You Can Do

If you suspect that marijuana is having a negative impact on your hair, here are some steps you can take.

  • Decrease your usage. Stopping entirely may be a sound option for some, but if you are using cannabis to treat a medical condition, try reducing usage low enough to erase any negative impact on hair quality but not at risk of worsening your medical symptoms.
  • Consume it differently. Most of the negative effects caused by cannabis are believed to be related to the harmful chemicals released during combustion. Consider edibles or oils instead but be careful not to overdo it.
  • Consume more foods rich in vitamins A, B, C, and D, iron, niacin, calcium, magnesium, and more. Doing so can help curb junk food cravings commonly associated with marijuana use.
  • Find the root cause of hair thinning or loss. While marijuana can contribute to hair loss in some, it is often not the main factor. Speak to your health care professional to identify the type of hair loss you are experiencing, determine the cause, and discuss treatment options.

Whatever may be causing your hair to thin or fall out, DiStefano Hair Restoration Center is here to help. We offer numerous treatment options, where one or more can quite possibly work for you. How to find out? Contact us today for a free consultation with our expert and experienced medical team.

For many, hair is more than just something to wash, dry, and brush.  It’s an important part of our physical appearance – one that can impact not only how we feel about ourselves but how others see and treat us.

Hair can look, feel, and behave differently depending on the season, weather, and our age.  In short, hair is a complex characteristic that, try as we might, is not always easy to understand or manage.

But that doesn’t mean we stop trying. Follow along as we answer some of the most common hair questions.

Can My Hair Fall Out from Over-Styling?

Hair that is treated poorly, regularly exposed to harsh chemical-based products and styling methods, or consistently heat-styled can become dry, brittle, and damaged.  As such, take frequent breaks from such methods and invest in hair care products that nourish your hair and scalp.  At the same time, consume foods that contain essential nutrients like omega-3 fatty acids, protein, biotin, zinc, and iron.  In most cases, hair damaged by over-styling can be healthy and beautiful once again.

Am I Shedding Too Much Hair?

The average person sheds 50 to 100 strands of hair per day, most of which you don’t even notice.  This shedding is a normal and healthy part of the hair growth cycle. However, if you notice a sudden increase in shedding, are losing clumps of hair, or notice thinning or bald spots, it could be caused by stress, a nutrient deficiency or disorder, medicinal interference, or some other condition.  Consult your doctor to determine the cause and, if so advised, explore treatment options.

What Can Make Hair Grow Faster?

Perhaps you’re tired of the pixie cut and wish you had your long, flowing locks back. Is there anything you can do to speed up the growing process? The short answer is no. However, you can take steps to encourage hair growth by eating plenty of nutritious foods, drinking enough water, and getting quality sleep. You also can try using hair products formulated with zinc and biotin.  Avoid harsh chemicals and styling techniques which can damage hair and cause it to break. And while it may seem counter-productive, keep up with regular trims to ward off split ends and keep your hair healthy.

Can I Prevent Male Pattern Baldness?

You’ve seen the adds on TV and in magazines – products promising to reduce your risk of a receding hairline with some even claiming to regrow hair.  The bad news is that male pattern baldness, or androgenetic alopecia, is a hereditary condition that makes some individuals predisposed to balding. In some instances, male pattern baldness can be caused by a hormonal imbalance.  Once again, maintaining a healthy lifestyle is crucial to hair health, but there’s no guarantee that strategy will bear fruit.  So what’s the good news?  There are a variety of treatment options to help you maintain the hair you have and prevent further loss. Speak with a trusted hair loss professional to learn what treatment or therapy might be right for you.

Speaking of trusted hair loss professionals, welcome to DiStefano Hair Restoration Center. We’ve helped thousands of patients throughout Southern New England regain the full head of natural looking hair, and now we can do the same for you.  The same goes for beards and eyebrows. To learn more, contact us today for a free consultation.

When you look in the mirror, do you like that you see?  Sure, maybe you’d like to do something about those crow’s feet or sunspots.  Or perhaps you wish you’d like to stretch yourself another inch or two in height.  But overall, you’re pleased with the person looking back at you.

Yet for those suffering for hair loss, seeing a receding hair line, bald spot, or overall loss of volume can have negative effects on their self-esteem, and inserting a downer into their social and professional lives.

If you’re dreading mirror time even a little, and thinning hair is at least part of the reason, then you’ll want to move forward a step at a time.  Step one? Finding that one medical team you trust completely and feel most comfortable with.

Choosing the Right Hair Transplant Surgeon

Did you know that just about any licensed physician can perform a hair transplant?  But being able doesn’t always mean “should do.” So, when choosing a hair transplant surgeon, look for one who has gone through rigorous training, passed board exams, and held at least one recognized medical residency.  To avoid the hair-plugged look from decades past, your doctor should be up to date and experienced in the latest hair restoration treatments and techniques a doctor who can explain all treatment options and recommend one that will deliver the best possible results for your specific situation.

Are You an Ideal Candidate?

An experienced hair transplant doctor will thoroughly assess your scalp to determine whether you are a candidate for surgery in one of two ways.

  • Determine whether you have enough hair on your scalp to use as donor hair. Your surgeon will need to harvest enough hair from an area on your scalp, usually the back, to naturally fill in the area where you’re experiencing hair thinning or loss. You also need to be able to successfully grow hair in the area that will receive the harvested follicles.  A qualified surgeon can determine whether you meet these criteria.
  • Investigate the cause of your hair loss. Hair transplant surgery may not work on individuals who have certain medical conditions.  Your doctor will want to discuss your medical history and may want to order blood work to determine if surgery is a viable option.

Recovery and Results

When performed properly and by an experienced surgeon, hair transplants are virtually pain-free.  While they take several hours to complete perform and require an incredible amount of knowledge and skill, these out-patient procedures require very little down time.  Your doctor should also provide you with detailed instructions to help you recover as quickly and pain-free as possible.  Don’t be afraid to ask for and check education and certifications, and always request to see before and after photos.

Comfort is Key

Discussing hair loss can be uncomfortable, but you need to have an open dialogue with your transplant physician about the process, your concerns, and the results you can realistically expect.  If you feel rushed, judged, or otherwise uncomfortable with the doctor or support staff during your initial consultation, they’re probably not the right practice for you.

Then again, DiStefano probably is – the right hair transplant medical practice, that is.  Job number one for us is making you not just feel comfortable, but fully confident that you’re in highly capable and experienced hands.  And yes, we will answer all your questions and give you all the input you need to make a wise and satisfying decision.  So, take that important next step and contact us today for a free consultation.

If you’ve found your way to this blog, you might be experiencing hair thinning or loss and wondering if hair transplant surgery is right for you.

Well, you’re in the right place to get at least some of the answers you seek. Because here we discuss some factors that must be present to proceed or, on the other hand, might prevent you from moving forward with a hair transplant – at least temporarily.

The first thing worth mentioning is that there are a variety of reasons an individual might consider hair restoration, including bald spots, receding hairlines, thinning mustaches, beards, and eyebrows, and even facial or scalp scars. It’s best to consult a trusted surgeon to see what options are available for your specific hair need.

Age

While there is no age limit on hair transplants, the ideal candidate is between 25 and 65 years old. Those younger than 25 experiencing hair loss might be dealing with other health-related issues that can be resolved with medication or lifestyle changes. Patients over 65, on the other hand, tend to have significantly thinner hair and may not have enough to transplant.

Type of Hair Loss

Not all types of hair loss or thinning are the same. Those suffering from alopecia, for example, may not have hair follicles healthy enough for a successful transplant. The most suitable candidates are those experiencing pattern baldness, a condition that only affect parts of the scalp, leaving plenty of healthy donor hair for extraction.

Hair Loss Classification

There are two main factors to consider when assessing hair loss – severity and quality/quantity of donor hair available. If there is not a sufficient supply of healthy hair follicles or the amount of loss exceeds the amount of available donor hair, the transplant will likely not be successful.

Your Overall Health

Pre-surgery good health is essential to reducing the risk of complications and will help you heal more quickly. As such, patients with long-term health conditions or complications should consult their doctor before undergoing this or any other surgical procedure. Keep in mind that certain medications, such as blood thinners, may also interfere with the results and recovery time.

Expectations and Post-Procedure Care

It’s important to set realistic expectations. For example, depending on the extent of your hair loss, one procedure may not be enough. Additionally, while a hair transplant is an outpatient procedure that takes only a few hours to perform, you may not start seeing results for several months. Additionally, you must be able to commit to following your physician’s aftercare instructions to minimize discomfort, reduce the risk of infection, and reduce overall recovery time.

Are you thinking “So far, so good”? If so, then the next logical step is to contact DiStefano Hair Restoration Center to schedule a free consultation. We’ll provide plenty of information while answering all your questions – both of which are essential to make the right decision.

 

As you age, hair loss becomes more probable and common.  One of its more common causes is genetics – if your father and your father’s father experienced hair loss, chances are you will, too. But genetics paints only a partial picture. For many, hair loss is caused by dihydrotestosterone (or DHT), a hormone that plays a role in puberty and helps men develop their adult male characteristics. Too much or too little of this hormone can lead to issues, including hair loss.

What Is DHT?

Dihydrotestosterone is a hormone made from testosterone and is present in both men and women, though men carry it in larger quantities. It’s responsible for masculine characteristics such as increased muscle mass, a deeper voice, and facial hair. While going through puberty, DHT is one of the primary forces between changes in men’s bodies. In adulthood the hormone can aid in maintaining fitness and sexual activity.

If one has too much DHT, however, it could contribute to an increased risk of prostate cancer and heart disease.

Hormone Imbalance and Hair Loss

While male pattern baldness is genetic, those who don’t have enough DHT are likely to suffer greater hair loss – even complete. Hair on the body grows from follicles tucked beneath the skin. An excess of DHT causes the follicles to shrink, making hair more prone to breakage, and increases the time it takes for hair to grow back.

DHT and Hair Loss in Women

Women typically have lower levels of DHT than men, but there is still a link between the hormone and female hair loss. Those with high levels can develop hair that is brittle, thin, and sheds easily. Though they may not develop bald spots, a woman’s head of hair can become thin, dry, and overall unhealthy in women.

Treating DHT-Related Hair Loss

There are several treatment options for DHT-related hair loss. For example, inhibitors can reduce the body’s production of DHT, allowing the shrunken follicles to widen and the hair to grow healthier at a more regular pace. Blockers are another form of treatment that, as the name implies, block DHT from binding to the receptors that cause follicles to shrink. Speak with your doctor to discuss possible treatment options and related side effects.

And, if you’re ready to discuss a hair transplant, regardless of the causes of your partial baldness, contact DiStefano Hair Restoration Center today to schedule a free consultation. We’re here to help you understand your options and answer all your questions.