There are many things about our appearance we may take for granted and, for most us, a full head of hair can fall into that category. As we age or as dictated by our genetics, our hair can thin or we can lose it completely. If specialized shampoos aren’t doing the job, it’s time to talk to a professional about getting real results. Call Advanced Regenerative Therapy in Savannah, GA to talk about PRP for hair regrowth.
What Causes Hair Loss?
To understand the solution, let’s tackle the problem. A certain amount of hair shedding is normal. Most of us lose upwards of 100 hairs a day. There are several factors that can combine or be solely responsible for thinning hair and hair loss.
Medications and Treatments
There are certain medications or physical treatments, like chemotherapy, that can cause hair to fall out. Talk to your doctor about potential side-effects and call them if you feel your hair loss is significantly worse than expected.
Certain medications can have a hair thinning effect on some people, so it’s important to understand potential side effects and be on the lookout for changes in your body when starting new prescriptions. Some meds that may cause hair loss are:
- Birth control pills
- Certain blood thinners
- Some cholesterol-lowering medications
Talk to your doctor about alternative medicines or supplemental treatments that may be offered to counteract this side effect.
Stress and Other Life Events
We’ve all heard the saying “she was pulling her hair out” in reference to stress. There’s more to this concept than just rhetoric. It’s a condition called telogen effluvium, and it’s when your hair stays in a constant telogen or shedding phase of the growth cycle. People can literally pull their hair out by the handfuls.
Severe stress can be the root cause of this kind of hair loss. Other lifestyle situations that can cause this condition are:
- Thyroid problems
- Certain medications
- Rapid weight loss
Visit your doctor. This tends to be a temporary condition but still needs your doc’s input.
Here it is, the number one reason people lose their hair. Androgenetic alopecia, another name for male or female pattern baldness, is responsible for over 50 million American men and 30 million America women dealing with thinning hair. This condition causes hair follicles to shrink and eventually stop producing new hair.
This condition affects more men than women and men can see hair loss around their temples and the crown of their heads. Men can experience this as early as their teens and 20s. Women tend to experience this hair thinning all over their heads, and it becomes noticeable in their 40s or past menopause.
While many people still turn to shampoos designed to combat this type of hair loss, PRP hair regrowth treatment has been proven to work on this type of hair loss.
Our hair is made of protein and each strand has a life span between 2 and 7 years. Each time a hair falls out, another grows in its place. As we age, our hair strands become smaller and thinner, so what once looked like a full head of hair can look sparse.
For most of us, many of our hair follicles will eventually stop producing new hair. What once was a head of full, coarse and healthy hair can turn into sporadically growing, thin, fine hair. Couple that with the light or graying color many of us get and the effect is amplified.
PRP therapy can help with this age-related hair thinning.
What Is PRP Hair Regrowth Treatment?
PRP hair regrowth treatment is an innovative way to use your own body’s healing process to trigger hair growth. Hair growth can also be maintained with the right follow-up treatments so that blood flow to the hair follicle is increased and the hair shaft enlarged.
What Is PRP?
To understand this therapy, we have to understand the role PRP plays in the body. PRP stands for platelet rich plasma and is derived from a sample of your blood during your treatment. Platelets, along with red and white blood cells, make up your blood. Consider platelets your body’s first responders to injury.
When you have a cut, platelets are sent to the site to stop the bleeding and begin the healing process. Platelet rich plasma has been used in surgery for decades to promote healing at injury sites because it contains growth factors and proteins that speed tissue repair and regeneration.
How Does PRP Work?
When injected into specific sites, the platelets go to work on damaged tissue, including damaged hair follicles, treating them like they’re injured and regenerating new cells. This stimulation of the healing process leads to hair regrowth, increased diameter of the hair shaft and greater density of growth.
Platelets regulate mechanisms fundamental in the healing process, including cellular migration and proliferation. These growth factors help our cells rapidly regenerate when those processes have naturally slowed down in our bodies.
This innovative treatment is comprised of three steps, all of which can be done during one appointment. It is non-surgical and minimally invasive with no downtime.
The first step is to take a sample of your blood. This happens at the beginning of the appointment. Blood is generally drawn from the arm. Once extracted, that sample is placed into a medical-grade centrifuge: a machine that rapidly spins to separate fluids into different densities.
After ten minutes in the centrifuge, your blood will have successfully separated. There will be three levels of fluid:
- Red blood cells
- Platelet poor plasma
- Platelet rich plasma
The platelet rich plasma is then extracted from the sample and is ready for injection.
Your doctor will have determined the areas of your scalp that are the cause for your thinning hair and will target those sites for injection. Small injections of your platelet rich plasma will be made under your scalp to kick-start the healing hair growth process.
What to Expect
It’s important you and your doctor have a consultation so they can get a better idea of when your hair thinning started and ensure they understand the root cause. A health history will be taken, and they will physically examine your scalp. This is also the time to talk through your areas of concern and get an understanding of what results can look like for you.
If you both decide this is the right course of treatment for you, there is no preparation. Because this is minimally invasive, you can walk into the office and be ready for treatment.
During Your Appointment
Your blood will be drawn at the beginning of the appointment so they can put it in the centrifuge to start the separation process. Your doctor may apply a topical anesthetic to the treatment site to maximize your comfort during your session.
Once the PRP is separated and in a syringe, your doctor will make small, meticulous injections across the scalp over the area of thinning hair. Sessions take between 30-60 minutes, depending on the area to be treated.
Once the treatment is complete, you can walk out of the office and back to work if you’d like. There is no downtime associated with this treatment. The only aftercare instructions you may be given is to take warm—not hot—showers to increase blood flow without injuring the injection sites.
You’ll also be asked to forgo your normal hairstyling routines of blow-drying, flat ironing, etc. and avoid direct application of products at the injection sites for a day or two.
How Many Treatments Will I Need?
Because this treatment is all about stimulating your body’s natural growth response, results aren’t immediate, and consistency will be the key to your success. Your doctor will make the appropriate treatment schedule specific to your hair loss progression and desired results.
Most clients will need three to four sessions, spaced one month apart, to achieve the kinds of results they’re hoping for. Once your hair is growing at a rate you’re happy with, it’s recommended that you get maintenance treatments every three to six months after that. All of this depends on your response to treatment and the kind of results you’re looking for.
Timeline of Results
As the PRP starts your body’s healing process and goes to work on your hair follicles, the first results most people notice are a decrease in hair shedding. It may be as simple as not having as many hairs left on the brush or bathroom floor, but you should see that number decreasing. This can happen as quickly as one month from initial treatment.
Two to three sessions in, you’ll notice new growth where there hadn’t been before. After the third session, and in the third month, hair should be longer and thicker. If you’ve not reached your results and your doctor thinks you’re responding well to treatment, you can opt for one or two more sessions to optimize your outcome.
Once you’ve reached your ideal level of results, follow your doctor’s recommendation for maintenance sessions so you can enjoy continuous results and keep the growth factors associated with PRP stimulated.
Who Is a Good Candidate?
Because this treatment uses the client’s own blood, this is a very well-tolerated therapy. If you’re an adult man or woman concerned with hair loss associated with male or female patterned baldness or the thinning that can come with age, you could be a great candidate for this treatment.
There are a few situations where another treatment option may need to be discussed because you may not be a good candidate for PRP treatment. If you have an underlying disease like lupus or a thyroid disorder, this may not be effective for your type of hair loss. Blood thinners may decrease the effectiveness of this therapy.
Only your doctor can decide if this is the right treatment to address your areas of concern. Your doctor may want you to have a multi-faceted treatment plan to address your hair loss. They may prescribe a topical medication to help stimulate hair growth or recommend effective over-the-counter minoxidil treatments as a complement to PRP hair regrowth therapy.
Choosing the Right Provider
Losing your hair can negatively affect your self-confidence and shake your once positive self-image. When you’re ready to discuss your options, you want to choose a professional who will treat you with compassion and respect as you deal with this sensitive subject.
Call the office of Advanced Regenerative Therapy in Savannah, GA to schedule a consultation. We believe everyone has the right to look and feel their best, so we take great care to listen to our clients and partner with them to create their personalized treatment plan. We’re committed to helping you reach all of your aesthetic goals.