Once you know how and why you are losing your hair, you may be able to stop or prevent it. In some cases, you have to treat an underlying medical condition or change your behaviour. In others, you just have to wait.
Two treatments are currently available: minoxidilâ„¢ (non-prescription) and finasterideâ„¢ (prescription). Both stimulate the regrowth of hair in some people and so increase the number of hairs (hair density), but they will not reverse hair loss and cannot regrow hair on a completely bald scalp. You must continue using the treatment to see an effect.
Minoxidilâ„¢ is a medication that you apply two times a day. It works by affecting the hairâ€™s life cycleâ€”by telling hair follicles to enter the growth stage. There are 2 formulations or strengths, 2% and 5%.
Finasterideâ„¢ is a pill that you swallow once a day. It reduces levels of the androgen DHT in the scalp by up to 70%. There is little evidence from clinical trials that finasteride is effective in women. You should not become pregnant while taking it. Possible side effects include weight gain, fatigue, and depression. Finasteride is well
tolerated and worth considering in post-menopausal and infertile women.
There have not been any studies if the combination of the minoxidilâ„¢
and finasterideâ„¢ is advantageous. One might expect an
added benefit effect.