As we age, our hair begins to thin and female-pattern or male-pattern baldness can occur. This can cause feelings of insecurity which affect your mental health. At Nourished MedSpa and Wellness Center in Sherman, TX, we believe everyone deserves to be happy, healthy and confident. That’s why today we are dispelling the myths and revealing the truth about PRP hair restoration.
What Causes Hair Loss?
Any number of things can cause hair loss. Common culprits include anemia and hypothyroidism. But if standard diagnostic tests come back negative, you may suffer from mild androgenetic alopecia, known as female pattern hair loss or male pattern hair loss.
These conditions describe shrinking hair follicles, which results in your hair falling out faster while growing back finer and shorter. This condition may also be called “miniaturization”. Unfortunately, this condition can occur just as easily in your 20s as it does in your 60s.
What Is PRP Therapy?
PRP, or platelet-rich plasma, therapy is a technique that has been used for dozens of applications since the 1970s. Primarily, PRP therapy has been used to treat sports injuries without the need for surgery. In recent years, PRP therapy has become much more commonplace for achieving aesthetic goals.
What Is the PRP Hair Restoration Process?
PRP hair restoration involves a three-part process. To achieve your desired results, you may need two or three treatments spaced roughly four to six weeks apart. You may also find you need maintenance treatments every four to six months. Here is what is involved in PRP therapy for hair restoration:
The First Step
First, you will have your blood drawn. Typically, your arm is used as the donor site of the blood. Then, your blood is put into a centrifuge. A centrifuge is a highly advanced machine that rapidly spins to separate fluids of different densities.
The Second Step
After the centrifuge spins for about 10 minutes, your blood will be separated into three distinct components. The first component is platelet-poor plasma. This component is not helpful in PRP hair restoration.
The second component is platelet-rich plasma, which is what will be used to restore your hair. The third and final component of your blood which is separated in the centrifuge is your red blood cells.
The Third Step
Using a syringe, we will draw the platelet-rich plasma up. Then, we will inject it into the areas of your scalp that require increased hair growth. After two to three months, you will start to notice an improvement in hair volume.
Within six months to a year, you should be fully satisfied with the results of PRP therapy. Just remember that you will need to come in for follow-up treatments to maintain your luscious, luxurious locks.
Why Does PRP Therapy Work for Hair Restoration?
Put simply, when you inject platelet-rich plasma into the scalp, the stem cells in your hair root are awoken. PRP therapy results in hair restoration by stimulating the growth of new hair from previously dormant follicles, strengthening and thickening your existing hairs. When the volume of your hairs is increased, they take up more surface area, covering more of your scalp.
If your hair loss is caused by a localized injury, injected platelets migrate to the site of the injury and stop any bleeding. Moreover, they release granules of growth factors that eliminate inflammation and heal the injured area.
What About Nutritional Deficiencies?
Sometimes, hair loss is caused by nutritional deficiencies. Plasma is very high in vitamins, nutrients and various types of proteins. That’s one of the reasons why it is so commonly used to treat musculoskeletal injuries.
Researchers have known for decades that injecting nutrient-rich plasma into sports injuries, such as knee inflammation or Achilles tears, speeds along the recovery process. Excitingly, research is currently being done to prove the safety and efficacy of PRP therapy for hair restoration.
Am I a Good Candidate for PRP Therapy?
Because PRP therapy is non-invasive, nearly everyone is a good candidate for this hair restoration treatment. During your initial consultation, we will help you determine if this treatment is a good fit for you. Be sure to bring in a list of all medications you are taking as well as any supplements and herbs.
A different hair restoration method may be right for you if you are on blood thinners, smoke heavily or have a history of alcohol misuse. You should also let us know if any of the following apply to you:
- Low platelet count
- Systemic disorder
- Thyroid disease
- Hemodynamic instability
- Chronic liver disease
- Chronic skin disease
- Acute or chronic infections
- Metabolic disorder
- Platelet dysfunction syndromes
Should I Seek PRP Therapy for Hair Restoration?
There is a huge misconception that male-pattern and female-pattern baldness result from a gene that can only be passed down maternally. Unfortunately, this is not true.
The genes for gender-pattern hair loss can be passed on paternally as well as maternally. If you have a family history of gender-pattern baldness, whether it comes from your mom’s side or your dad’s side, PRP therapy for hair restoration is right for you.
Genetics plays a major role in hair loss. Epigenetics is the second most significant contributing factor in pattern baldness. Epigenetics is basically a fancy word that describes the effect your environment (stress) has on your body.
You may have graduated college with a full head of thick hair. Within a couple years, however, your landlord has raised the rent 22%, your past five applications for more affordable apartments have been denied, your girlfriend is pregnant, you just lost your job and you don’t have a down payment for a condo. All of these stressors result in your body releasing extra cortisol.
What Is Cortisol?
Cortisol is a hormone commonly known as the “stress hormone”. Your body produces more cortisol the more stressed you are. Depending on your genes, your body may turn cortisol into testosterone. Any hormonal imbalance, but particularly excess testosterone, can lead to hair loss. In other words, stress really can make your hair fall out.
Most of our clients seek PRP therapy for hair restoration when they are in their 30s or 40s. However, if you are in your mid- to late-20s and noticing your hair thinning, you should absolutely schedule an initial consultation. This way you can get ahead of the situation and enjoy long-lasting results.
PRP therapy for hair restoration is perfect for people who aren’t quite experiencing pattern baldness yet and want to improve the health and thickness of their hair before their hair loss becomes noticeable to coworkers.
The growth factors in platelet-rich plasma do more than stimulate the growth of hair. They also stimulate existing collagen and promote the growth of new, healthy collagen. Collagen is another important factor in keeping your scalp healthy and full of hair. But the older you get, the less collagen your body produces. Ask us during your initial consultation if you could benefit from the stimulation of collagen growth.
What Can I Expect During Treatment?
Depending on the extent of your hair loss, we will remove 25cc of blood from your arm. This equates to only two vials. After your blood has spun in the centrifuge for five to 10 minutes, we will use tiny syringes to inject the growth factor-rich plasma into the affected areas of your scalp. Each injection takes under 15 seconds.
If you’re worried about the injections hurting, take Tylenol as directed on the bottle 60 minutes before your treatment. You will not feel any pain. Just make sure you’re not taking an NSAID as this type of medication thins your blood and can affect the outcome of your treatment.
What Can I Expect After Treatment?
After treatment, you must wait 24 hours before washing your hair. You should also do your best to leave your head alone for 48 hours after treatment. After 48 hours have passed, you are free to return to your normal daily activities.
You can also expect to see initial results immediately after treatment. It takes a while for PRP to work its magic fully. While your hair won’t look thicker as soon as you walk out of our office, it will look shinier, stronger and healthier immediately. Your hair cells are immediately rejuvenated once the platelet-rich plasma is injected into the treatment site.
What Are the Best Things I Can Do for My Hair?
Avoid Hormone Supplements
Remember, excess testosterone can lead to hair loss. Do not take testosterone supplements unless directed by your doctor. Even corticosteroid injections for joint pain relief can lead to androgenetic alopecia. Among the hormone supplements most likely to cause hair loss are Winstrol, Masteron, Primobolan, Trenbolone, Anavar, Dianabol and Anadrol.
Watch What You Eat
To keep your hair healthy, you must consume a healthy diet. Consume natural foods filled with iron and vitamins by shopping on the outer edges of the grocery store. You should also avoid food loaded with sugar and simple carbohydrates and eat other types of carbs in moderation. Too many carbs can lead to insulin resistance, which can lead to hair loss.
However, even though you should limit unhealthy foods, you should not consume a “restrictive diet”. Make sure you’re getting all the vitamins and minerals you need to keep your hair healthy. A quick rule of thumb is to get your recommended daily allowance (RDA) of all the nutrients you need to stay healthy. If you’re having trouble hitting this mark through diet alone, seek help from a licensed nutritionist or take a dietary supplement.
It sounds cliche, but smoking is terrible for your health, including the health of your hair. Luckily, if you’re young, the hair-thinning effects of smoking can be reversed. If you’ve been smoking regularly for the past several decades, it’s not too late to stop. PRP therapy can thicken your hair, and the absence of tobacco and its byproducts will stop any more of your hair from thinning, even while you’re not receiving PRP hair loss treatment.
Use the Right Shampoo
Taking biotin supplements or trying to get more biotin in your diet may not be enough to keep your hair healthy. Look for shampoo that is infused with biotin. This ensures the essential nutrient is being delivered to your scalp. You should also look into shampoo containing ketoconazole, an antifungal which helps to reduce testosterone production in your hair follicles.
Schedule Your Initial Consultation Today
To learn more about the amazing potential of PRP hair restoration, contact the dedicated health and wellness experts at Nourished MedSpa and Wellness Center in Sherman, TX today to schedule your initial consultation. We will help you find the best hair restoration technique for your unique aesthetic needs.