Anybody in Singapore who suffers from hair loss in 2019 should know that there is a range of treatments you can explore today. To get you started at a good place, here’s a helpful brief on 5 hair loss treatments you might want to consider.
1. Hair Loss Medications
Hair loss medications are the first thing that comes to mind when addressing hair loss. After all, we initially seek pharmacological intervention when something’s off with our health.
If you’ve made efforts to address hair loss, then you most likely came across oral Finasteride and topical Minoxidil. These are established treatments for androgenetic alopecia (male pattern baldness), that prevent further hair loss and partially reverses baldness.
Here’s a quick overview of these two hair loss medications:
• A prescription medication that comes in a 1-mg tablet to be taken orally every day.
• It has a better response at the vertex of the scalp.
• It works best in younger men since there are more hairs at the early stage of miniaturisation, as opposed to older patients where cases are more advanced.
• Results are noticeable within 3-6 months of use, and peaks around the 12th month.
• It improves total and new hair counts with favourable effects on hair quality.
• It is linked to sexual side effects like erectile dysfunction (impotence), low ejaculatory volume, and abnormal ejaculation.
• An over-the-counter treatment that is sold as a foam or lotion formula.
• It comes in 2%, 3%, and 5% concentration.
• It has to be applied twice daily on the scalp and should be left on for at least 4 hours.
• Side effects include scalp itching, excessive hair growth on the hands and face, and increased dandruff formation or initial increase shedding.
What most people may consider a major drawback is the indefinite use of these medications to maintain the results. This is an important point of discussion with your physician, in view of their accompanying side effects.
Albeit a type of treatment riddled with untoward reactions, medications are generally safe to use. These remain to be necessary treatments to stop the progression of hair loss. In fact, they are prescribed even after hair transplant surgery.
As the first line of defence against hair loss, doctors make sure that you have tried medications first prior to any invasive treatment. Any concerns should be discussed with your prescribing physician for proper advice. This way, you can be monitored both for the intended action and side effects.
2. Low-Level Laser Therapy (LLLT)
LLLT is a complementary treatment to medications and hair transplant surgery that enhances the hair’s durability, health, and appearance. Several studies support its safety and effectiveness in producing these results, explaining why it is widely offered in clinics and aesthetic centres in Singapore.
LLLT and Hair Loss
LLLT has been shown to improve various medical indications like wound healing, joint pain relief, and nerve regeneration. It is also a proven treatment in the field of hair restoration with the red laser light’s positive effect on tissue repair and regeneration.
At specific wavelengths, it improves blood circulation and stimulates cellular activity on the scalp. The light absorbed strengthens the hair cells and other surrounding areas, creating a conducive environment for hair growth.
LLLT can also be a stand-alone treatment for hair loss. However, patients must fit into a certain classification based on the Ludwig-Savin Scale for women and the Norwood-Hamilton Classification for men. A consultation will determine the degree of hair loss and suitability for the treatment.
LLLT devices have received FDA approval and are available as:
• Hand-held devices (laser combs)
• Bonnet, head caps or headbands
• In-office hoods or overhead panels
Why Consider LLLT?
• It can stimulate hair growth along different areas of the head.
• It has no reported adverse effects.
• It is painless.
• It can be used on both men and women.
• Minimal time commitment.
• It boosts the effects of medications and the results of hair transplant surgery
• A well-tolerated treatment for androgenetic alopecia.
• Choosing to undergo LLLT to address hair loss requires regular treatments usually in a span of one year.
• Laser treatment should not be used together with medications or products that induce photosensitivity.
3. Nutritional and Hormonal Factors
Hair loss supplements are also popular alternatives when addressing hair loss. They come in different formulations to achieve either or all of the following outcomes:
• Promote hair growth
• Boost hair health
• Correct hormonal imbalance that may have caused hair loss
Hair loss supplements are created mainly to provide your body with the necessary nutrients that will promote hair growth and improve the quality of hair. This is evidenced among the wide range of ingredients brands used in their formulas – from exotic roots, caffeine, and even marine ingredients.
Are They Effective?
To label them collectively would do a lot of brands out there a disservice. While some products are no better than snake oil treatments, some have undergone extensive research and development. There are supplements that are able to deliver the desired results.
Among the hair loss supplements in the market, our clinic trusts Viviscal Pro. Not only is it a good addition to your daily health regimen, it is also a reliable complementary treatment to other hair loss procedures (e.g. LLLT, Hair Transplant surgery).
The product doesn’t contain any pharmacological ingredient and it is derived from sustainable marine products carefully picked out for its hair benefits. The supplement starts the change from within by nourishing the hair and scalp to allay any inflammatory processes that can be a precursor to hair loss.
The Real Score
A major concern about supplements is that the process of finding the right one can be a series of hits and misses. What may work for one person may not necessarily be effective for the next simply because of how our body reacts to it.
Like hair loss medications, you also have to take it regularly and indefinitely to maintain the results. To this regard, it would be wise to seek medical advice to ensure that these will be safe for you in the long run.
Just because something is labeled natural, doesn’t mean it is 100% safe. The ingredients found in supplements may have the potential to create untoward reactions. As a matter of fact, you even have to disclose any use if you aim to proceed with hair transplant surgery later on.
Supplements are convenient options and a lot of it are effective too. However, always make an effort to find a good one and remember to take these products with caution.
4. Regenera Activa
Regenera Activa is a recent addition to the list of hair loss solutions in Singapore today. It uses tissue specimens from your own scalp, making it a natural and safe treatment.
The 3-Step Process
• Under local anaesthesia, 4 tissue specimens bearing hair that are 2mm in diameter are taken from the back of the head (usually behind the ear).
• The collected specimens are placed in a device to extract growth factors and other cells that contain regenerative abilities.
• The suspension is gathered and injected into balding areas of the scalp to jumpstart the growth process.
The results start with a reduction in hair loss followed by improved hair density and thickness. It also regenerates inactive hair follicles to grow healthy hair. These transformations can be expected to take shape around a month or two after treatment. To maintain results, you must come back for another treatment in a year or two.
5. Hair Transplant
Hair transplant is gradually gaining attention in Singapore today thanks, in part, to the increasing awareness about hair loss disorders. People are veering away from traditional myths about hair restoration to evidence-based medical therapies.
Hair Transplant in Singapore
The process of migrating healthy hair to bald areas of the scalp is a procedure that should only be carried out at a licensed medical clinic. It must only be done by a trained doctor who is required to meet certain criteria. In Singapore, hair transplant doctors are required to follow guidelines set by the Singapore Aesthetics Practice Oversight Committee. This means that strict safeguards are in place to ensure that safe and good quality service is delivered.
Not Everyone Can Be a Candidate
A good surgeon would not recommend hair transplant just to anybody with the resolve to do it. Proper patient selection is necessary to achieve the desired long-term results. For example, patients in their early 20s are advised against surgical hair restoration as hair loss tends to progress at this age.
If carried out too early, it is highly likely that there will be insufficient donor hairs, resulting in more hair transplant sessions in the future. If it is also done at a young age, the hairline created may be too low, which will look unnatural later in life.
Getting By with a Little Help
Ideally, hair transplants should be seen as a last resort for hair restoration. Results can be improved further when paired with complementary treatments.
To boost the outcome of your hair transplant surgery you can:
• Continue with hair loss medications to prevent hair loss progression.
• Use laser treatments to improve healing and hair growth.
When considering a treatment for your hair loss, your choice should be tailored towards:
• The type of hair loss
• The severity of your hair loss
• The progression
• Your budget
Your hair loss could potentially progress from here and it’s good that you’re making an effort to do something about it now. To get you on track, it pays to seek professional help at the earliest possible time.
For any questions, you can ask Dr. Tyng Tan today. Book your appointment whenever you’re ready, and we’ll walk that journey with you.