Botox is a neurotoxin produced from Botulinum toxin. The toxin comes from the bacterium Clostridium botulinum, and is used in treatments of muscle disorders, such as spasm. In fact, it’s also useful for paralyzing muscles.
Another way that Botox is helpful, is in the treatment of tension headaches such as migraine.
Botox is also popular for cosmetic use. They inject it to improve the appearance of wrinkles on facial skin, such as around the lips, eyes, or neck, or even for face-lifting.
Does Baldness Only Affect Men?
Alopecia (baldness) is not only common to men, but also in women. Though, the way it manifests itself can be different between the genders.
Men’s baldness is seen by the presence of a receding hairline. Or, it shows itself as loss of hair from the front of the head to the temple. With women, it’s characterized by thinning hair.
What Causes Baldness?
The prominent cause of alopecia is Dihydrotestosterone (DHT). This is an endogenous androgen hormone. Recent research shows that DHT may not be the only reason for alopecia. Scalp tension may be another.
According to a study, there’s a muscle connected to the top layer of skin. It’s connected by a subcutaneous fibrous and rigid layer called the galea muscle. It plays a prominent role in male-pattern balding. Physical stress can also affect the galea muscle.
Do Botox Injections Work For Baldness?
A study from 2010 showed Botox injected into the scalp, stimulates hair growth in Androgenetic Alopecia, known as male-pattern baldness.
The study into the use of Botox for hair loss treatment began after a Canadian physician observed his hair began to regrow after injecting his scalp with Botox. He’d actually been using the Botox to help treat a migraine.
He started a study into the use of Botox to treat alopecia in men, together with other researchers. For the study, he recruited fifty male patients with different stages of hair loss, and tested for sixty weeks, with two twenty-four-week treatment periods.
Hair loss was significantly reduced by thirty-nine percent. They also found the men had an eighteen percent hair boost in hair growth.
Another study carried out in 2017, performed treatment on ten male subjects for a treatment period of twenty-four weeks. Again, the result of the experiment showed a significant improvement in the hair of the subjects.
Out of the ten subjects, eight subjects showed a range of response from good to excellent. One showed fair and manageable improvement, while only one showed poor response upon assessment. They compared two pictures taken before and after the treatment plan.
The two studies combined showed Botox as a safe and effective treatment plan for hair loss in men.
How does this work? Botox stimulates the muscles into relaxing, particularly the galea muscle. It also increases blood flow to an already balding scalp.
Finasteride and Minoxidil are marketed and approved by the FDA as a cure and solution to hair loss.
Minoxidil is a topical treatment, originally marketed for the treatment of hypertension, but it also stimulates hair growth. Apply the formula by massaging it into the bald scalp. This increases blood flow. Even with similarities of increased blood flow, Botox is considered the better treatment. It treats the root cause of the problem–scalp tension.
Finasteride, an oral product, acts by inhibiting 5-alpha-reductase. This is an enzyme that acts alongside testosterone to produce DHT, a hormone associated with male-pattern baldness.
More prefer Botox to Finasteride. That’s usually because of the side effects of Finasteride. One of the biggest issues is the negative impact on male sexual performance. Another disadvantage is that it increases the sensitivity of hair follicles to DHT. Also, if the patient stops taking it, the hair will shed a lot.
Advantages of Botox Treatment
The advantage of Botox injections as a treatment for alopecia is that it deals directly with the underlying cause of hair loss. With scalp tension, the administration of Botox is enough to address the issue and may be given along with FDA approved drugs.
Another advantage of Botox injections is that they only have to do it three to four times a year. You’ll notice a positive effect in about five to six days. The results can last as long as three to six months.
Another advantage is in treating an oily scalp. The overproduction of sebaceous oils causes oily scalp. When the hair root clogs, it can lead to dandruff or excessive loss of hair.
The only set back that can be associated with the use of Botox injections at this time, is the cost. It’s more expensive than other plans, but equally effective and without side effects.
Also, the mode of administration is different. The inject the scalp intramuscularly. No worries, the injection shouldn’t be painful.
After the administration of Botox, for it to be effective, one has to relax for at least one hour. This allows it to adequately absorb into the muscles. It also is good to avoid exposing the injection site to heat for at least three days after administration.
Although the use of Botox as a treatment for hair loss is not mainstream at this time, it is effective and safe.
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