Living With Alopecia

At Dermatology Associates of the Lowcountry — with offices in Hilton Head, Okatie, or Beaufort, South Carolina — Dr. Oswald L

Is your hair thinning or falling out? You may have one of two types of alopecia, one rare and the other common. Either way, losing your hair on your scalp, face, or other parts of your body can be difficult to live with.

The way alopecia affects each person varies, and the condition can range from mild to severe. In some cases, your hair grows back. Others find themselves completely hairless. Regardless of severity, many people experience similar emotions, including fear, anxiety, embarrassment, loss of self-esteem, and anguish. 

Fortunately, there are treatment options to halt hair loss and even help you grow back hair. At Dermatology Associates of the Lowcountry — with offices in Hilton Head, Okatie, or Beaufort, South Carolina — Dr. Oswald L. Mikell offers his expertise in treating all types of alopecia. The first step is a thorough exam to determine the nature and severity of your condition.

The two types of alopecia

While most people think of hair loss as a male problem, both types of alopecia can affect men and women of any age. Hair loss can come in patches or can affect your entire scalp and even your eyebrows. Here’s what you need to know about the two forms of alopecia.

Androgenetic alopecia

This type of alopecia is the most common form. In men, it’s often called male-pattern baldness; in women, female-pattern baldness. This condition can start as early as your late teens or early 20s for men and usually late 40s for women, commonly after menopause.

In men, the pattern of hair loss or thinning usually starts at the temples and crown of hair. For women, it results in a general all-over thinning, with a concentration on the crown. About 50 million men and 30 million women in the United States experience this type of hair loss. 

Alopecia areata

This type of hair loss affects far fewer people than androgenetic alopecia. Only about 2.5 million people in the US experience this condition, with men and women affected in equal numbers. Alopecia areata usually begins in childhood, with 60% of people affected having their first episode of hair loss before age 20.

Some people with alopecia areata lose a patch of hair, some lose all the hair on their head, and others lose all of the hair on their body. In some cases, the hair grows back, but it’s most likely to fall out again.

Treatment options for alopecia

You don’t have to live with embarrassing bald spots, patches or thinning hair. Dr. Mikell offers a variety of treatment options that can help slow down thinning hair and hair loss. If you’re interested in hair transplants to regrow hair, he can help you explore that option as well.

Taking into account your condition and hair goals, Dr. Mikell works with you understand all of your treatment options and can recommend the best one for you. If you’re beginning to lose your hair or you’ve already lost it, call Dermatology Associates of the Lowcountry. You can also make an appointment online through this website.

Our team provides convenient and compassionate care for all of your dermatological concerns. In next month’s blog, learn about skin tags and cysts and when you should be concerned about them.

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