There’s no denying that we put a lot of value in the way that we look. That’s not to say that men are inherently vain, but most of us are quite attached to our hair. Not only does a good head of hair perfectly accent our face, but it’s also closely associated with youth. This is why many men mistakenly associate hair loss with middle adulthood, ignoring the fact that it can happen to anyone regardless of how young or old they are.
Few phrases are the source of as much stress and anxiety in men as these three words: male pattern baldness. It’s something that affects the majority of us at some point in our lives, and it’s something that nine out of ten men are concerned with. So, why does male pattern baldness go untreated with so many men? Especially, when you consider how treatment programs are generally effective and affordable? Mostly because of a lack of knowledge. After all, there is a lot of misinformation out there regarding hair loss.
Another reason why male pattern baldness goes unchecked with so many men is because they don’t recognize the warning signs – not until it’s too late, that is. What you need to remember about reversing the effects of hair loss is the best approach is a proactive one. The sooner you discover that you’re losing your hair and take action, the better your odds are of stopping your hair from thinning further. Alternatively, if you wait until the majority of your hair is gone to take action, you’re going to have a difficult time growing your hair back.
Fortunately, there’s a way for you to keep track of your hair loss so that you don’t wake up one day only to find that half your hair has fallen out. It’s called the Norwood scale, and was developed by doctors James Hamilton and O’Tar Norwood. Here are its stages:
Stages I and II: the first two stages of the Norwood scale cover light hair loss. This is where the hairline starts to recede slightly without any major changes to the crown. Stage I is marked by thinning around the temples and a slight recession that often goes unnoticed or ignored. By the time we get to Stage II, the balding near the temples has moved further inward, creating the common M-shaped hairline that is common in a lot of men.
Stage III: the baldness becomes more visible. The temple recession continues to grow to the point that there’s little or no hair in the temporal regions. This is the stage where the hair on top of the head becomes noticeably thinner, and is usually when balding spots begin to develop. This is when it becomes harder to conceal your hair loss.
Stage IV: by the time you reach Stage IV, it’s evident that you’re experiencing male pattern baldness. This is where you’ll develop noticeable bald spots. The hair on your crown will begin to thin out and you may start losing large patches of hair in the back of your head at the vertex, or in the front of your head.
Stage V: this is when we start to see the early signs of the horseshoe-shaped hairline. This is when hair loss is entering a severe stage where it becomes more difficult to treat.
Stage VI: if you make it to this stage of male pattern baldness, you’ve managed to lose a large portion of your hair. Your hairline has crept up to the top of your head, and what little hair remains on your crown is thin and provides minimal coverage of your scalp.
Stage VII: consider this stage to be full-blown baldness. This is the classic horseshoe or cul-de-sac pattern which leaves the top of the head completely bald. Unfortunately, if you make it all the way to Stage VII without taking any form of action, your chances of recovering your hair are slim.
If you want to keep the same head of hair throughout your adult life, you’re going to need to take action as soon as you catch the first signs of male pattern baldness. Ideally, you’ll want to start a treatment program within the first three stages to get the best results. But even in the later stages, all the way to Stage VI, you still have a chance to stop further hair from falling out – you might even regrow some hair as well!