Will Testosterone Increase Hair Growth
Written by Ben Bunting: BA, PGCert. Sport & Exercise Nutrition, L2 Strength and Conditioning Coach.
Something that a lot of men, women and everyone in between may have to deal with at some point in their life comes in the form of hair loss and the eternal search to grow your hair.
It could be to help grow the hair on their scalp, face, or anywhere else on the body.
For example, one factor that can play its part comes with you getting your essential nutrients to give your body the best chance.
The reason that you may be losing some natural hair is due to a decline in testosterone, which may also lead to a , also known as DHT, which will be covered later on throughout this article.
This article will cover the following topics to help answer your questions:
- What Is Testosterone?
- The Hormone Behind Male Pattern Hair Loss
- Testosterone and Hair Growth in Females
- How To Help Yourself Naturally
By the end of the article, you should be more informed on hair loss and if testosterone can help to increase hair growth. After all, testosterone is good for a lot more things in your body than youd think.
Can Testosterone Cause Female Hair Loss
In a word, yes. Just like men, a womans hair can also be affected by testosterone. However, female hair loss can often look a little different than male pattern hair loss. Hair loss in women is often accompanied by increased shedding of hair, loss of density, loss of volume, and loss of coveragesometimes even receding in the temples and hairline. The good news is that at Bauman Medical, we have over 25 years of experience helping women with hair loss maintain, enhance and restore their own living and growing hair. Since there are many causes of hair loss and many new options for treatment, Dr. Bauman always recommends a complete diagnostic medical hair loss consultation to get to the root of your hair loss problem and measure your baseline hair growth status before starting any hair growth therapy.
Female Hair Loss Causes Is It Testosterone
While this is surprising to many people, pattern baldness doesnt only occur in men we see cases of female hair loss, the causes of which are, most commonly, hormone related.
For many women, having a full head of healthy hair is associated with youth and beauty two qualities that, as a woman, you would probably like to keep for as long as possible.
Womens hair loss due to hormones can be damaging to your self-image and how you perceive your quality of life.
While it receives much less attention than the male version, female pattern hair loss is a real problem for some women.
Rather than try to manage that problem at the surface level, its much more important to look at the root causes.
In fact, it is often the case that female hair loss is due to a hormonal imbalance.
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How Testosterone Affects Hair
The hair loss due to testosterone usually happens due to the excessive amount of this active component. When DHT is accumulated on the hair follicles, it inhibits the flow of essential nutrients and proteins. At first, it results in testosterone thinning hair as the follicles are not able to get the required nutrients. In the long run, it disrupts the hair regrowth cycle. The resting phase of the cycle is increased and the new hair strands become thinner.
In the end, it leads to bald patches and the permanent loss of hair. This phenomenon is also known as DHT testosterone hair loss. Since DHT is found in females as well, it can even cause a peculiar female pattern baldness as well.
How Much Is Prescribed
For hair loss, your doctor will likely prescribe a daily dose of 100 to 200 milligrams. However, they might recommend you start with 25 milligrams a day and slowly increase your dose to reduce your risk for side effects.
Spironolactone sometimes causes drowsiness, so its best to take at night. You can take it with or without food.
If you havent gone through menopause, your doctor might also prescribe birth control pills to take with spironolactone. They might also prescribe minoxidil to take with spironolactone, regardless of your age.
The exact dosage and combination of medication that your doctor suggests will depend on how severe your hair loss is and whether you take other medications for hair loss or other conditions.
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What Are The Treatments For High And Low Testosterone
If you and your doctor determine that your testosterone levels really are out of balance , you could try testosterone therapy. In guys with low testosterone, that means taking a treatment that contains the hormone to make up for what your bodys not producing.
Testosterone is available in many forms, including injections, gels, and patches, but they usually require a prescription. Youll also need to get your levels checked on a regular basis to make sure youre not overcorrecting and ending up with abnormally high testosterone. And be sure to keep your expectations realistichormone therapy can be unpredictable, and theres no guarantee that improving your T levels will make specific symptoms go away.
Not every guy is a good candidate for testosterone therapy. If youve had health issues involving your prostate, kidney, liver, or heart, be sure to bring that up with your doctor before starting testosterone.
On the other hand, if your testosterone is too high, that could be a sign of a problem with your pituitary glands or your testes. Treating these issues will be more complicated than applying a weekly gel, so you might want to consult with a local endocrinologist if youre on the high end of the testosterone spectrum.
What Is Testosterone Therapy
Over the past few years, the FDA has approved many various kinds of testosterone therapies. The ones most commonly used come in the form of hormones that are injected directly into the muscle. There are also ones that can be applied to the skin using a cream or even released slowly via a small pellet thats put inside the body, usually in the soft tissue of the hip.
Many men claim to see results almost immediately. Energy levels shoot through the roof, concentration becomes sharper, and libido returns to that of their younger selves. After a month or so weight loss and muscle improvement are easier to maintain as well.
There are plenty of studies that show the benefits of these types of treatments, but like most things, there are always some consequences to what we put into our bodies.
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Can Testosterone Therapy Cause Hair Loss
Testosterone replacement therapy is commonly used by men who have low levels of testosterone, but it is also used in women who may be lacking this important hormone. Injected testosterone is also used by transgender men as a form of gender-affirming therapy. But can it cause hair loss?
If a person takes testosterone therapy, there will always be a chance it will cause hair loss, explained Dr. Williams. Any increase in androgens or androgen precursors can have a downstream effect and make more of the potent androgen DHT, he added.
As covered so far, its not a matter of more testosterone causing hair loss. But, if you have a family history of AGA or high levels of 5-reductase, testosterone injections or hormone replacement therapy can lead to higher DHT levels, which could then, in turn, lead to increased hair loss symptoms.
Testosterone therapy might even help with hair growth for some people. Ironically, there is a study that showed that androgen deficient women receiving testosterone supplementation actually demonstrated increased hair growth, said Dr. Ilyas.
Is Dihydrotestosterone Unavoidable During Testosterone Replacement Therapy
While the majority of prescribing physicians and similar medical professionals do not normally prescribe dihydrotestosterone blockers in tandem with testosterone replacement therapy, it is entirely possible for a patient to request such a drug be added to their endocrinological regimen if hair loss is a significant risk factor for them.
However, without the presence of dihydrotestosterone blockers alongside testosterone replacement therapy, it will be entirely up to the individuals genetics and lifestyle whether they develop any sort of hair loss or not, making the choice of undergoing testosterone replacement therapy one entirely of personal preference.
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Treating Androgenetic Alopecia In Women
Obtaining an accurate diagnosis is critical if you are going to achieve results with any hair regrowth regimen, and this is especially true in treating female hair loss. Once an accurate diagnosis is obtained and baseline measurements obtained, a therapeutic regimen can be started that addresses both the intrinsic and extrinsic influences on your hair follicles. If you are on a hormone optimization regimen that includes testosterone, its important to consider reducing your testosterone replacement, adding anti-androgen therapies , and using medical hair loss treatments to enhance the function of your existing follicles to make them perform better and become more resilient to negative influences.
If you or someone you know has hair loss, hair thinning, baldness, or eyebrow / eyelash concerns, click to start either a long-distance virtual consultation OR an in-person, in-office consultation with Dr. Bauman. You can also Ask Dr. Bauman a Question or simply call Bauman Medical Group toll-free or
Testosterone Usage And Hair Loss
Over the past few years there have been an increasing number of men undergoing testosterone treatments for no valid medical reason other than a lifestyle trend referred to as male menopause. They view these treatments as the fountain of youth and can experience many benefits ranging from increased libido, preventing muscle mass loss, and improved energy levels.
But with those benefits can also come some negative side effects. One of the side effects of testosterone use can be hair loss, which, if youre looking for a way to appear and feel younger, maybe not be route you want to take.
The idea of Male Menopause is a relatively new theory being treated by Testosterone therapy. And while doctors have been using Testosterone therapy for legitimate medical reasons for years, this new trend may be causing other issues that men may want to think twice about when considering these forms of therapy.
Lets take a look at what testosterone is, what testosterone therapy is used for and how testosterone therapy may be related to hair loss in some individuals, and what you can do to help prevent it.
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Can Testosterone Injections Cause Hair Loss
Medically reviewed by Jill Johnson, FNP
As men age, testosterone can become a scarce commodity. Age can make just about all of your bodys processes less efficient, which can lead to wrinklier skin, slower healing from injuries and a reduction in your bone density.
It can also potentially contribute to lower production of certain essential hormones, including the male sex hormone testosterone.
For many men, this gradual decline in testosterone production that occurs with age can lead to low testosterone, or low-T — a condition that can affect everything from your bone density and muscle mass to your sex drive and risk of erectile dysfunction.
Low testosterone is a treatable condition, and one of the most common treatment options is the use of injectable testosterone to bring your serum testosterone levels back up to normal. This is often referred to as testosterone replacement therapy, or TRT.
Testosterone replacement therapy can deliver real benefits, but it can also accelerate the effects of male pattern baldness.
Below, weve discussed why pattern hair loss can occur in men, as well as the indirect role that testosterone can play in the process of developing a receding hairline, bald patch at your crown or other common signs of balding.
Weve also explained your options for maintaining your hair as you grow older, whether you use testosterone to treat low-T or not.
Testosterone Dht Dihydrotestosterone And Hair Follicles
In the body, testosterone is converted to DHT or dihydrotestosterone by an enzyme called 5-alpha-reductase or 5-AR. Science suggests that while both testosterone and DHT can cause hair loss, DHT is the more powerful of the two androgens. Both sexes have circulating androgens, however, in men, levels of testosterone and DHT are higher than in women. It is important to note that androgens have a different effect on hair follicles depending on their location in the body. For example, androgens trigger hair growth in the pubic and axillary regions during puberty. The androgen DHT has been identified as the primary trigger for hair loss in the scalp in men and is also a major contributing factor in womens hair loss as well as unwanted facial hair growth .
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Whats The Role Of Testosterone In Hair Growth In Men And Women
Sex hormones are unique to males and females but its functions for individuals are the same. In general, specific hormones are responsible for the development of masculine and feminine traits and characteristics, sexual function and reproduction, and helps maintain overall good physical health and wellbeing.
When it comes to issues concerning hair growth and hair health, the testosterone hormone is the one thats always in the spotlight. In males, testosterone is responsible for their development during puberty and an adequate amount of testosterone is needed for them to increase muscle mass and grow facial and body hair.
For women, testosterone is released in small amounts from the ovaries and the adrenal gland. While theyre not as affected by low testosterone, women may also struggle with androgenetic alopecia due to high DHT levels converted from high levels of androgen. Female hair loss can also be associated with hormone changes during pregnancy, medications, menopause, and thyroid hormone imbalance.
Is Female Hairline And Temple Recession Due To Testosterone
If youve noticed that your temples look more receded than before after starting testosterone therapy, you are not alone. Many women find that their hairline is taking on a more masculine, appearance months after using testosterone gels, injections, or pellets. As the hairline recedes, it changes your facial proportionsmaking you appear older and less feminine. Patients often ask, Do I need to stop testosterone to protect my hairline? and rarely, the answer is yes, but thankfully not for most patients. Protecting the hairline and temples often becomes the main focus for women who are enjoying the many benefits of testosterone therapy. It is possible to protect hair follicle function and enhance hair growth, as long as the follicles are still viable and can be rejuvenated. For women with long-standing hairline recession or severe density loss, hair transplantation may be the only viable option for restoration of that area.
How To Treat Hair Loss Caused By Testosterone
Hair loss caused by testosterone can be a bit complicated. To get a long-term treatment, the level of testosterone in the body is stabilized at first. Later, a hair regrowth treatment is implemented. Ideally, a combination of these treatments is followed to treat testosterone hair loss.
Does High Or Low Testosterone Cause Hair Loss
Because of the correlation between androgen deficiency, DHT, and mens hair health, many people have linked low testosterone to premature hair loss. But the truth is, you could have high testosterone and still lose your hair. Like low testosterone, most men will experience a hormone imbalance once their testosterone levels exceed the expected amount. And when that happens, that hormone imbalance will also cause DHT to increase and contribute to hair loss.
Both low and high testosterone can lead to the body producing more DHT. Based on the similarities, most researchers believe high DHT levels are the primary cause of hair loss. But that isnt necessarily true. There are also many men with high DHT levels who have never experienced hair loss. So what is the actual link between your hair loss and your testosterone?
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Does High Testosterone Equate To Male Hair Loss
Not necessarily. The relationship between testosterone and male pattern hair loss is complex. Only a small percentage of testosterone gets converted to DHT, and if you have high DHT levels, you may have more severe health issues that need to be addressed.
The fact is, male pattern hair loss has been observed with both high and low testosterone levels. There are also plenty of men with high testosterone levels who do not go bald or experience hair thinning. The main culprit here may be genetics. Genes may dictate how sensitive hair follicles are to DHT, which may determine propensity for potential hair loss.
While converted forms of testosterone contribute to male pattern baldness, hair loss and high testosterone levels donât really have much of a link. However, high testosterone and DHT levels can lead to other health issues. If you think that you have high testosterone, consult your healthcare provider or use the Everlywell at-home Testosterone Test kit to determine testosterone levels. If youâre worried about hair thinning or hair loss, itâs worth talking to your healthcare provider and/or your loved ones about that, too.