Many factors can cause hair loss. To get proper treatment, it is important to know what is causing your hair loss. Dermatologists are skilled at diagnosing hair loss and advising their patients on what can help them grow their hair.
How do dematologists diagnose alopecia areata?
Your dermatologist will evaluate the location (s) and hair loss carefully and check your nails. Your dermatologist will also ask some questions. This may be enough to test you. Because there are so many causes of hair loss, testing is sometimes required to make sure that alopecia areata is the cause of your hair loss.
If you have alopecia areata, your dermatologist will talk to you about how the disease is affecting your life and whether treatment is recommended.
How do dermatologists treat alopecia areata?
If you have recently received your diagnosis and have had alopecia areata for less than a year, your dermatologist may recommend a wait-and-see approach. Your hair may grow back on its own, making treatment less effective. If treatment is needed, your dermatologist will consider a number of factors, including:
- Your age
- The amount of hair you have
- Where you lose hair
It is important to know that no medicine works for everyone. To find another benefit, you may want to try a few different treatments or medications. Here’s what your dermatologist can recommend.
Children ten years and under
Alopecia areata usually begins in childhood. If your child is having difficulty coping with hair loss, treatment can help to regain hair growth.
Treatment options for children under 10 years of age are:
Corticosteroid you use for bald spots: prescription-strength corticosteroids can help grow hair. You use this medicine once or twice a day. For children, this alone may be the solution.
Minoxidil: also known by the brand name rogaine®, minoxidil can help maintain growth after you stop using corticosteroid. It has a limited effect, so it is considered a good choice for children. For children over 10 years of age, treatment options are based on the amount of hair loss.
Patchy alopecia areata
If you are older than 10 years and have fewer patches of alopecia areata, your dermatologist may recommend one or more of the following treatments:
Corticosteroids injections: to help your hair grow, your dermatologist injects the product into the affected areas. These injections are usually given every four to eight weeks as needed, so you will need to return to your dermatologist’s office for treatment.
This is considered to be the best treatment for people with small patches of hair loss. In one study of 127 patients with hair loss, more than 80% of those who were treated with these vaccines had half their hair growth within 12 weeks.
Minoxidil: also known by the generic can help you maintain the hair growth serum recommended by another treatment. You will need to use it 2 to 3 times a day. It is useful for the scalp, beard, and eyebrows.
Corticosteroids you take: you use this medication for baldness once or twice a day as prescribed by your dermatologist. This remedy usually does less work for adults than for children to grow hair.
Anthralin: you apply this remedy to baldness, let it stay on the skin for as long as your dermatologist says, and wash it off. It will cause some skin irritation. To get the best results, you will also use minoxidil.
Loss of eyelashes
Our eyelashes protect our eyes. If you lose some (or all) of your eyelashes, your dermatologist may include one or more of the following in your treatment plan to help protect your eyes:
- False eyelashes
- Glasses: wearing glasses helps to protect your eyes and prevent hair loss.
Bimatoprost (or similar drug): this is a approved drug for the treatment of glaucoma and cataracts. The us food and drug administration (fda) has also approved it to help eyelashes grow longer.
Intralesional corticosteroids: a dermatologist may prescribe this medication to help the eyelids begin to grow again. If the injections work, using minoxidil as a prescription can help keep you growing again.
Hair loss is more common (or faster).
When alopecia areata causes widespread hair loss, total hair loss (alopecia totalis), or total hair loss (alopecia universalis), few people regain their hair without help. Bata immunotherapy: also called topical immunotherapy, the purpose of this treatment is to transform your immune system from invading your hair follicles. Dermatologists have:
He has used this treatment for over 30 years to treat widespread alopecia areata
They found that about 60% to 70% of patients have some hair regrowth it is important that you keep track of the time allotted. Missing appointments can cause these treatments to stop working, causing the newly grown hair to fall out.
The treatment itself involves your dermatologist (or nurse) applying chemicals on your scalp. The first time you receive this treatment, it will be less likely to trigger a chemical reaction in your body.
Once you have made the procedure, the chemical will be applied weekly to your baldness and left for 48 hours. During this time, you should keep the treated skin covered and should not cause swelling, full of redness, swelling, and itch. The eruption takes about 36 hours.
What results from a person with alopecia areata?
Sometimes, hair grows on its own without treatment. This usually occurs when a person has small patches of alopecia areata, which have been present for less than 1 year.