Don’t believe for a second that hair loss only affects a person physically. Too many people that have not suffered through losing their hair believe it is just a physical thing. Sure, it can greatly change our appearance and make us appear older beyond our years as more and more hairs start ending up on the bathroom counter, but it is much more damaging to our psyche than others realize. While losing hair may not physically make you ill, it can be mentally incapacitating to those who cannot bear to appear older than their actual age.
Why Does Hair Loss Happen in the First Place?
Once we are born, we are genetically wired to either keep our hair or eventually lose it. It is literally in our DNA. If you look back at your family tree and notice 90 percent of the men are bald, there is a good chance that you will be too, someday.
Of course, if you analyze it scientifically, you know that DHT is to blame. DHT is the main culprit for your hair starting to thin. DHT is what gives men their male attributes. It lets our voices deepen, is essential for male genitalia, and does many great things for men. But it is also responsible for men losing their hair. Interesting enough, it is responsible for that pesky back hair as well. Now if only that hair would grow on our heads, we wouldn’t have such a problem.
Balding at an Early Age
High school is difficult enough without having to worry about hair loss. Just trying to survive classes and the hallways, dealing with teachers, and handling bullies is enough for any teenager to deal with.
Every teenager is consumed with their looks as they manage the social scheme of high school. You want your skin to be clear and your hair to be thick. The last thing you want is to stand out among the rest of the kids in a less than desirable way. But, it may surprise you to know, about 16 percent of boys from the ages of fifteen to seventeen suffer from male pattern baldness. Having to go through the horrors of high school while balding is just too much for anyone to take.
In fact, research studies have shown that about one-third of men are experiencing hair loss by the age of thirty. During these years, most men are starting a career and trying to find the person they would like to eventually marry. However, looking older before your time does not make things quite as easy. While bald men are getting much more respect now than ever before, and many women find them quite handsome, being bald in your early twenties just doesn’t seem right. You are just experiencing life for the first time and you are already behind the eight ball! Or, perhaps more appropriately, the cue ball.
Depression Can Accompany Hair Loss
It may sound silly to some, but losing your hair is like losing a really good friend. It is a piece of your identity that is going away forever. It can make even the toughest man extremely sad. As the baldness worsens, it does not get any easier.
Real depression can set in as you stare at your vanishing hairline more and more in the mirror every day. It is like you are kissing away your youth and have no choice in the matter. Plus, as you look around and see men with their thick hair and cool hairstyles and then see yourself with hardly any hair left on your head, it can be a huge kick in the teeth. In fact, if you don’t suffer from depression while losing your hair, you are one of the very few.
Loss of Self-Confidence
If you have ever tried to land a date with someone you find attractive, you know the butterflies in your stomach are immense. Now try doing that knowing that your hair loss will play a factor in whether the person says yes or not. Having to wear a baseball cap every time you go out because you are embarrassed about your balding is no way to live. Plus, you are always in fear of someone knocking your cap off your head and exposing your baldness to others. Unfortunately, anybody that has thinning hair will also be losing their self-confidence.
Anxiety about Leaving the House
Anxiety is fear or severe apprehension about what is going to happen in the near future. There are people out there that won’t leave the house if they have one simple pimple because of the anxiety they feel. Now imagine if you were mostly bald. The anxiety you would feel would be much, much worse. It’s one thing if you have muscles and a shaved head as this appearance can be impressive to many. But being bald and slightly out of shape can be downright hurtful to your soul. Because of this, losing your hair can bring on a whole slew of mental conditions that can last for years and years. Not only can it prevent you from leaving the house, but it can keep you from living your life.
When to Seek Counseling
All of these feelings of depression and anxiety and loss of self-confidence are normal when your hair seems to be washing down the drain daily. However, you should be concerned if these feelings never seem to go away. If you’re wondering how you can psychologically make your way out of these doldrums that appear to last forever, it might be time to talk to a mental health professional. There is absolutely no shame in consulting a therapist or a counselor. You will feel better if you do. Plus, they can assess the situation and see if there is a solution that maybe you are not seeing at the moment. In severe cases, they could even recommend medication if needed.
Treatments That May Keep Some Hair on Your Head
Rather than just play the victim, you can always go on the offensive and figure out a way to slow down your hair loss. For instance, low-level laser therapy has been shown to decrease hair loss and increase hair growth. Wearing a laser cap for twenty minutes a day just a few times a week can work wonders. You could also increase your intake of certain vitamins and minerals that have been shown to slow down male pattern baldness and could even regrow a bit of hair in the process.