Testosterone Replacement Therapy (TRT) is commonly used to treat men with low testosterone levels. This procedure can result in several side effects, such as acne, weight gain, and mood swings. However, one of the most common side effects is hair loss.
While this side effect is common, it doesn’t mean you have to suffer. But a few people have reported experiencing either male-pattern baldness or female-pattern hair loss from having low testosterone levels and taking testosterone therapy.
If you are worried about losing your hair while on testosterone therapy, keep reading to learn more tips on preventing it.
What is Testosterone?
Before we learn how to prevent the loss of hair while taking testosterone, let’s first go over what testosterone is.
Testosterone is a dominant male sex hormone that’s responsible for the development of male sexual characteristics. It also plays a vital role in a man’s health, affecting bone density and red blood cell count.
Furthermore, there are different types of testosterone, free testosterone and DHT, a testosterone derivative.
Testosterone levels typically peak in a man’s early 20s and then gradually decline as he gets older. By the time a man reaches his 40s, his testosterone levels may be half what they were in his 20s. This natural decrease in testosterone levels is called andropause.
Moreover, low testosterone levels can cause various symptoms, such as fatigue, low sex drive, and erectile dysfunction. These symptoms explain why men with low testosterone levels may opt for testosterone replacement therapy, which is a treatment that aims to restore testosterone levels to their normal range.
Testosterone replacement therapy comes in many forms, such as gels, creams, patches, and injections. This type of therapy is also available for women who want to treat low testosterone levels, although it’s not as expected.
Now that you know more about testosterone let’s go over how to prevent hair loss while taking this hormone therapy.
How to Prevent Hair Loss While Taking Testosterone Replacement Therapy
Here are some products you can use to stimulate the hair growth cycle while maintaining your testosterone levels:
Minoxidil is a popular hair treatment found in products like Rogaine. It’s a topical solution applied to the scalp and helps by widening blood vessels and increasing blood flow to the scalp. Topical Minoxidil is available over the counter and doesn’t require a prescription.
Additionally, many say that minoxidil is a DHT blocker that treats hair loss and has proven effective in clinical studies. It also helps stimulates the hair follicle and increase the size of the hair shaft.
You may consider using finasteride if you want a treatment that can improve hair density and help with hasteride. It is a prescription medication taken orally to treat male pattern baldness.
Finasteride works by blocking and binding five alpha-reductases, an enzyme responsible for converting testosterone to DHT. By blocking this enzyme, finasteride can reduce the amount of DHT in the scalp.
According to a study, Finasteride has an 87% success rate in treating hair loss and supporting the growth of hair in some men.
Biotin is another popular treatment that can stimulate hair growth and is available over the counter. It is a water-soluble vitamin part of the vitamin B complex and can be found in many foods like eggs, nuts, and beans.
This vitamin B-derived product helps by improving the strength of the keratin in hair follicles. In addition, Biotin helps with cell proliferation.
4. Vitamin B
Vitamin B is intensely involved in human hair growth. This vitamin is essential for cell growth, DNA replication, and the production of amino acids, which are the building blocks of protein.
You can find Vitamin B in many foods like meat, poultry, eggs, and leafy green vegetables. Vitamin B complex supplements are also available and help with hair loss and keep your scalp hair healthy.
Additionally, Vitamin B enhances the blood flow to your hair follicles, which could support hair growth.
5. Essential Oils
Essential oils have become famous for their many benefits, including hair growth. These products have anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties that can benefit the scalp.
Some essential oils that help with hair loss are rosemary, peppermint, and lavender oil. Additionally, they can help improve circulation and promote hair growth.
6. Diet and Exercise
Eating a healthy diet and regularly exercising can also help with hair loss. Eating foods rich in vitamins and minerals, like fruits, vegetables, and protein, keeps your hair healthy. Regular exercise can also increase circulation, promote cell growth, and reduce stress levels.
7. Stress Management
Stress is one of the leading causes of hair loss. When stressed, your body goes into survival mode and diverts all its resources to vital functions like heart rate and breathing. As a result, it leads to a decrease in non-essential functions like hair growth.
You can manage stress by doing mindful activities such as exercise, meditation, and yoga.
8. Scalp Massage
Another popular home remedy for hair loss is scalp massage, which increases circulation and promotes cell growth. You can either use your fingers or a scalp massager. Start massaging your scalp massager in a circular motion for five minutes. You can do this once or twice a day for the best results.
9. Aloe Vera
You can find aloe vera in many hair products like conditioners and shampoos. However, this succulent plant offers many benefits, including treating burns and promoting hair growth. This plant improves circulation and provides nutrients to the scalp.
To use this for hair loss, massage the gel from an aloe vera leaf into your scalp once or twice a day.
10. Coconut Oil
Coconut oil is a popular home remedy for many conditions, including hair loss. Coconut oil helps with hair loss by preventing protein loss and keeping your scalp healthy.
To use this for hair loss, massage it into your scalp and let it sit for 30 minutes before washing it. You can do this once or twice a week for the best results. Many home remedies can help with hair loss. These remedies are usually safe and effective, but be sure to speak with your doctor before trying them.
Does Having Higher Testosterone Cause Hair Loss?
Yes, higher testosterone levels can cause hair thinning. Taking steps to prevent hair loss is essential while taking TRT. However, some reported cases in which testosterone may increase facial and body hair growth while causing hair loss on the scalp.
Higher testosterone can increase the amount of DHT or dihydrotestosterone in the scalp. DHT is a byproduct of testosterone produced when testosterone comes into contact with the enzyme 5-alpha reductase. Additionally, it is one of the main culprits interfering with the growth of hair and attacking your hair follicles, both in men and women.
Moreover, it could increase the chance of androgenic alopecia or hair loss caused by your hormones. Also called male androgenetic alopecia, this is known as male pattern hair loss.
Frequently Asked Questions
Does testosterone make hair thicker?
No, testosterone does not make your hair any thicker and might contribute to the loss of hair. However, this only applies to those with high testosterone levels who undergo testosterone therapy.
Is hair loss from testosterone reversible?
According to studies, the loss of hair from testosterone is not reversible. But some treatments can help slow down or stop the progression of it, such as taking medicines or products that promote hair growth.
What hormone makes your hair grow?
Several hormones, such as testosterone, estrogen, and progesterone, make your hair grow. However, the most crucial hormone for the growth of hair is androgen, which stimulates the growth of hair follicles.
Does more testosterone mean more DHT?
You need to know that when testosterone is present, it will be converted into DHT. So, if you have more testosterone, you will also have more DHT. More DHT means you are more likely to experience the loss of hair since this hormone shrinks hair follicles.
You can prevent hair loss while taking testosterone, such as treatments or products promoting hair growth. You can also try home remedies like a scalp massage and coconut oil.
Some may work for you, and some may not. That’s why you must experiment with what works best for you. Remember to speak with your doctor before trying any of these treatments.
If you found this article helpful, check other fitness-related articles on ExpertFitness.org.
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Nathan Lloyd, MSc
LICENSED PERSONAL TRAINER
I’m a personal trainer, based in Boulder, Colorado.
I service clients physically in the Boulder area, mainly in the ONE Boulder Fitness Gym, but am also available for online consulting and coaching.
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