If you’re experiencing hair loss, chances are that you have already heard of minoxidil. Minoxidil, developed originally as an oral medication for blood pressure, is a topical serum that promotes hair growth, thickness, and strength.
If you’re wondering whether minoxidil may be an effective solution for your hair loss, read on.
What Is Minoxidil?
As mentioned above, minoxidil is a topical treatment for hair growth. It’s approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to treat male and female pattern baldness and sold over the counter as a liquid or foam and is available in different strengths.
How it Works
The ways in which minoxidil works to promote hair growth are not yet fully understood but researchers believe its anti-inflammatory, vasodilating, and anti-androgenic effects might contribute. Some experts believe that minoxidil works by partially enlarging hair follicles and extending the anagen phase (or growth phase) of hair, while other data suggests that it causes increased blood flow to the hair by dilating the blood vessels in the scalp.
Regardless of exactly how it works, one thing is for certain – it can greatly benefit those with hair thinning or loss, but it doesn’t work for all causes of hair loss, all hair types, and only delivers results with continued use. Also, it’s most effective for people who start using it at the first indications of hair loss and isn’t likely to help those who’ve already gone completely bald.
Benefits of Minoxidil
- When used regularly and according to product instructions, it stimulates new hair growth in those experiencing hair loss.
- Increases hair thickness and density so that strands grow back fuller and healthier.
- Shown to be effective in promoting hair regrowth and density in patients with Androgenetic alopecia and female pattern hair loss.
Who Should Not Use Minoxidil
Always talk with a doctor before starting any over the counter medication or treatment. You should avoid using minoxidil if you have
- Sudden or unexplained hair loss, including hair falling out in patches
- Hair loss after giving birth, are pregnant, or chest feeding
- A discolored, itchy, infected, or painful scalp
- Used hair products, chemicals, or hair grooming methods that cause hair loss
- A condition that may cause hair loss, like thyroid disease or alopecia areata, nutritional deficiencies, chemotherapy, scarring of the scalp, or take medications that may cause hair loss
Side Effects of Minoxidil
When you first start using minoxidil, you might notice an increase in hair shedding for the first couple of weeks as your hair follicles push old hair out to make room for new growth. This is completely normal and you should not be alarmed. You may also experience redness or a little itching; see a dermatologist if irritation doesn’t improve. Some also experience hair growth in adjacent areas, like the forehead, and changes in hair texture and color.
DiStefano Hair Restoration Center has a number of non-surgical hair restoration methods, like minoxidil, that can provide fantastic results without invasive measures. If you’re seeing signs of hair thinning or loss, don’t wait. Call us today to schedule your free consultation and start your journey to thicker, fuller, healthier hair.