‘What is this? Baldness?’ – It’s a worrying question that no man ever wants to ask himself, but it can be a significant one. If you spot the telltale signs early on, you can start taking steps to keep those luscious locks firmly rooted to your head.
So, what are the signs to look out for?
This is perhaps the most common type of hair loss, but as it happens gradually until baldness really sets in. It can be a little tricky to spot. Thankfully, living in the digital age, most of us have a handy tool here: old photographs! Have a dig through those pictures on your phone or Facebook, and use them to compare the shape of your hairline of yesteryear compared to today. Has it thinned out or receded at the temples? Or do you now appear to have developed a V-shaped widow’s peak that wasn’t there before? If so, you may be in the early stages of a receding hairline.
Although our hair does naturally get thinner as we get older, a sudden loss of density can indicate that you’re beginning to lose your hair. A good time to spot thinning is when you’re styling or grooming your hair. When you apply a product or run it through with a brush, are there any areas on your head where your scalp has become more visible or baldness appears? Or are there areas that feel or look thinner than the rest of your hair? If so, there’s a good chance your hair is planning a disappearing act.
Another common sign of pattern baldness is a bald or thinning patch on the back of your head, generally around your crown. Use a mirror or snap a photo of your crown – if it’s starting to resemble Zinedine Zidane in 1998, then it may be time to take action.
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Your hair grows back slowly
One final symptom of hair loss can be slowing hair growth – if you’re noticing that your barnet is taking an increasingly extended trip between haircuts, it might be a very early manifestation of pattern baldness. You should also keep an eye out for changes to the structure of your hair, mainly if it’s growing back weaker or wispier.
So there you have it – if any of these symptoms ring true with you, don’t worry! Male pattern baldness is very common and can set in at any age. Luckily there are options available, that is proven to slow down and in some case, regrow hair loss
The trick is spotting the problem and embracing it before it’s too late – you can then decide the best solution for your baldness – whether that’s opting for a treatment, or merely taking up a buzz cut!
Scott McDougall (MPharm) is a clinical pharmacist and in addition to being Cornerstone’s senior in-house pharmacist, is the co-founder of The Independent Pharmacy, one of the UK’s leading independent online pharmacies.