Q:

What are some solutions for thinning hair?

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Quick Answer

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved two treatments for hair that is thinning due to genetics or aging: minoxidil and finasteride. Occasionally, some doctors use laser treatments or hair transplants for people who have bald patches.

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What are some solutions for thinning hair?
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Full Answer

Minoxidil, often known by its brand name Rogaine, comes in 2 and 5 percent formulas that are purchased over the counter. It stops thinning hair and often aids in hair growth when it is applied topically twice a day. Finasteride is the generic name for the medication in the brand name oral medications Propecia and Proscar. Its main function is reducing the production of androgen. These medications are only prescribed to women who are postmenopausal, as they can affect hormone production and cause birth defects in pregnancy.

Treatments take time to work; during this time, hair can be styled in such a way as to minimize the look of thinning during that time. Hair kept above the shoulders avoids looking stringy, and the ends that are blunt cut give the illusion of thickness. If thinning is happening at the crown, a stylist can cut bangs into the hair for fullness. Products that can add volume to hair include dry shampoo and keratin fiber powders. If thinning is extreme, wigs and extensions are an option as long as the scalp can still breathe and the extensions don't pull on fragile hair.

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