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Should You Blame Your Mom for Your Hair Loss?
by April Maguire
You’ve probably been told that the genetic cause for hair loss gets passed down through the mother's side of the family. On the surface, this little factoid seems just odd enough to be true. But is it? Well, yes and no.
In actuality, there are roughly 200 different genes that are responsible for hair growth, and you inherit these genes from both your mother and your father. So if you're dealing with hair loss, maybe the problem comes from the maternal side, maybe from the paternal side or, if you're really unlucky, both sides. These faulty genes are the cause of the vast majority of hair loss, creating problems for tens of millions of people around the world.
A Problem for Men and Women
Typically, people tend to think of hair loss as an issue for men. In fact, more than 60% of men experience some degree of thinning or loss by the time they reach 40 years old, and that number skyrockets to more than 80% once men reach their 60s. But women are in no way immune to hair loss. According to the most recent statistics, more than half of women start to see a noticeable amount of thinning by the time they reach 40, and that percentage increases with age.
While genetic hair loss is problematic for both men and women, the two sexes experience it differently. For men, hair loss occurs around the hairline above the forehead and around the crown of the head – a condition generally referred to as male-pattern baldness. Women, on the other hand, experience a more diffuse, globalized thinning around the entire head, resulting in patches of miniaturized follicles next to areas where the follicles are completely healthy and strong.
Genetic Tests for Hair Loss
In years past, people had no choice but to try out different hair loss remedies in the hopes that they would find a solution. Fortunately, however, we live in a brave new world where simple a genetic test can tell you how likely you are to start losing your hair and what the underlying cause will be. Moreover, these tests can also predict which type of treatment will work best for your specific type of hair loss, helping you to decide whether to use finasteride, minoxidil, or another medication entirely.
Just remember, however, that while heredity does play a major role in hair loss, it isn't the only cause. Other factors, such as stress, illness, medication and lifestyle choices can all contribute to hair loss in varying degrees. So before you go blaming your mom – or your dad – for your hair loss, take stock of your risk factors, and try to identify all the culprits that could be causing you to lose your hair.
If you or someone you know would like to learn more about hair loss and how to treat it, please feel free to schedule a consultation or contact one of our representatives today!