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23 yr old - Good Hair to Bald in 6 months


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  • Regular Member

Hello, Im new to this forum, thought I needed to share my current predicament Hello, I'm new to this forum, thought I needed to share my current predicament as for anyone who may have experienced anything similar and more importantly to give myself some mental therapy by encapsulating my problems in text.

 

I'm a young, 23 year old, African American male who up until approximately 6 months ago had no noticeable or concerning hair loss problems. I've never been overly vain about physical appearance but have always been a very confidant, extremely sporty individual, regularly attending the gym (ok a little vain). In general I liked to keep myself in decent nick up to a point where I remained very masculine to men and women.

 

In the last 3 years I've had my hair short, shaved, Afro, braided and cornrows and over the last year id had my short hair relaxed and straightened similar to that of the musician Usher. Well, the last time I got my hair chemically relaxed (approx 6 months ago), it was either left in too long, reacted with something in my scalp or whatever, as for the next 4 days I had a severe burning sensation on my scalp. It appeared to return to normal soon after and I soon forgot about it (making a mental note that would be the last time I got my hair relaxed).

 

Fast-forward 2 months and my hair still appears normal, it's grown a little and is due a cut or style but instead of getting it relaxed and cut again I decided to re-grow my favoured big afro style (Don King esc, without the grey hairs). Fast-forward another 2 months and at this stage I'm in a major PANIC! Over the last 2 months id noticed that hairline was no longer growing apart from the central portion. No big deal you may think, that's just MPB but I'd also noticed the hair on the left frontal part of my head had also ceased to grow and appeared to be thinning! It had become blatantly noticeable, so I thought maybe the relaxer had in fact damaged some part of my hair, no problem I've had a shaved head before, ??shave it all off' and the damaged hair will grow back.

 

From that night my life has been a nightmare! Shaving my head revealed a number of seemingly darkened scars on my hairline that Id never seen before; secondly after a week of re-growth (my hair normally grows very quickly), it was obvious the damaged area showed no sign on improvement. Out came the razor again to keep my dignity. I visited a Tricologist who examined the area, concluded there shouldn't be any major concern and prescribed ??Minoxidl' to ??stimulate' those follicles.

 

Fast-forward another 2 months to today and I'm now no longer the man I was 6months ago either in appearance or mentally. The left frontal part of my head appears to have got drastically worse since use of minoxidl so I keep my head clean shaving in the hope no one has noticed the problem ??“ (Although I never previously minded having a shaven head, I cant now stand to think I may never be able to grow my hair again). Every minute of my days are occupied with my sudden hair loss problem. I don't go to the gym anymore, I try not to see my friends in case anyone finds out, I quit my part-time job in a clothes retail shop, spend my days on the internet looking for a cure, dream of restoring my old hair every night, find it hard to get up in the morning, don't leave the house without a hat on unless I really have to and In general have become quite depressed! I finished my university degree during this period and found it hard to study or function while constantly worrying about my appearance. I fear friends and females especially will no longer find me attractive, people will get the wrong impression of me etc. I just feel my life has truly collapsed to the point I just want to hide somewhere hoping it all goes away. For the first time in my life I feel truly helpless, powerless to change my outcome. I'm now drastically considering hair transplants even though cosmetic surgery is something I would never have considered in a million years. However, I don't know if I could do it both financially and the inability to reverse the process if anything goes wrong!

 

In short, I've gone from a perfectly good head of hair to a balding mess in half a year and cant come to terms with it!! I need help.

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  • Regular Member

Hello, Im new to this forum, thought I needed to share my current predicament Hello, I'm new to this forum, thought I needed to share my current predicament as for anyone who may have experienced anything similar and more importantly to give myself some mental therapy by encapsulating my problems in text.

 

I'm a young, 23 year old, African American male who up until approximately 6 months ago had no noticeable or concerning hair loss problems. I've never been overly vain about physical appearance but have always been a very confidant, extremely sporty individual, regularly attending the gym (ok a little vain). In general I liked to keep myself in decent nick up to a point where I remained very masculine to men and women.

 

In the last 3 years I've had my hair short, shaved, Afro, braided and cornrows and over the last year id had my short hair relaxed and straightened similar to that of the musician Usher. Well, the last time I got my hair chemically relaxed (approx 6 months ago), it was either left in too long, reacted with something in my scalp or whatever, as for the next 4 days I had a severe burning sensation on my scalp. It appeared to return to normal soon after and I soon forgot about it (making a mental note that would be the last time I got my hair relaxed).

 

Fast-forward 2 months and my hair still appears normal, it's grown a little and is due a cut or style but instead of getting it relaxed and cut again I decided to re-grow my favoured big afro style (Don King esc, without the grey hairs). Fast-forward another 2 months and at this stage I'm in a major PANIC! Over the last 2 months id noticed that hairline was no longer growing apart from the central portion. No big deal you may think, that's just MPB but I'd also noticed the hair on the left frontal part of my head had also ceased to grow and appeared to be thinning! It had become blatantly noticeable, so I thought maybe the relaxer had in fact damaged some part of my hair, no problem I've had a shaved head before, ??shave it all off' and the damaged hair will grow back.

 

From that night my life has been a nightmare! Shaving my head revealed a number of seemingly darkened scars on my hairline that Id never seen before; secondly after a week of re-growth (my hair normally grows very quickly), it was obvious the damaged area showed no sign on improvement. Out came the razor again to keep my dignity. I visited a Tricologist who examined the area, concluded there shouldn't be any major concern and prescribed ??Minoxidl' to ??stimulate' those follicles.

 

Fast-forward another 2 months to today and I'm now no longer the man I was 6months ago either in appearance or mentally. The left frontal part of my head appears to have got drastically worse since use of minoxidl so I keep my head clean shaving in the hope no one has noticed the problem ??“ (Although I never previously minded having a shaven head, I cant now stand to think I may never be able to grow my hair again). Every minute of my days are occupied with my sudden hair loss problem. I don't go to the gym anymore, I try not to see my friends in case anyone finds out, I quit my part-time job in a clothes retail shop, spend my days on the internet looking for a cure, dream of restoring my old hair every night, find it hard to get up in the morning, don't leave the house without a hat on unless I really have to and In general have become quite depressed! I finished my university degree during this period and found it hard to study or function while constantly worrying about my appearance. I fear friends and females especially will no longer find me attractive, people will get the wrong impression of me etc. I just feel my life has truly collapsed to the point I just want to hide somewhere hoping it all goes away. For the first time in my life I feel truly helpless, powerless to change my outcome. I'm now drastically considering hair transplants even though cosmetic surgery is something I would never have considered in a million years. However, I don't know if I could do it both financially and the inability to reverse the process if anything goes wrong!

 

In short, I've gone from a perfectly good head of hair to a balding mess in half a year and cant come to terms with it!! I need help.

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  • Senior Member

Loosing your hair that fast would make anyone depressed and freak out. It actually happened to me after a hairtransplant.There is only one known cure that combats the effects of hairloss that is acceptance. What happened to you will make you stronger even though you don't beleive it now because it is very traumatic but you will get over it trust me. There are stages of response to hairloss :denile ,panic,anger,then acceptance.And you never had a chance to adjust. I think I was in the panic stage when I got wacked.Stay away from a hairtransplant clinic as you are ripe for the picking as you have not emotionally adjusted to the drastic change and they will feed into this.Anyway nobody will find you less attractive.Shaved heads are in these days and black guys pull it off with style.Get back to the gym and look at Sean Ray thats the look.

"The first cut is the deepest." Cat Stevens

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  • Senior Member

fresh, If only the left frontal area of your scalp is affected,I wonder if it is MPB you are suffering from or a result from a chemical burn from your hair treatment.

 

6 months seems very fast and affecting just one lateral side of the scalp sounds different than MPB which typically would onset more diffusely and bi-latterally.

 

I am not sure what a 'tricologist' is but maybe you should see a dermatologist. They specialize in disorders of the skin and I suspect might give you a more precise diagnosis of what the problem is and clearer explanation of your options.That might ease your anxiety a bit and help you make more informed decisions about possible responses to this situation.

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  • Regular Member

Thanks guys.

 

I think the reason its hit me so hard is the speed at which its all happened, I've had no time to adjust or come to terms with any of it. In 1 day I could go from complete acceptance of my predicament to depression in an hour.

 

I find myself anaylsing anyone and everyones hair and more importantly Im even beginning to slightly resent my 60 yr old dad whose still, got a full hair of dense afro hair (Stupid I know)!

 

Just out of interest, does anyone know any websites of before and afters of african american HT's or any doctors that specialise in this area?

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  • Regular Member

Here are some pics just to illustrate the drastic change. Here is the first 2 years ago when I was rocking the big afro and braids periodically (No explanation needed).

2_years_ago.jpg.8925ec77514c57a9ce247118dbbece66.jpg

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  • Senior Member

From your story and pictures I would definitely say that is a reaction to the chemicals. I can't speculate as to whether or not it is permanent or even as to whether minoxidil will have any effect. You say that you have spoken to a physician about it. My advise would be to keep it shaved and see what time brings. Who knows? Maybe the follicles just rushed into a telegen phase (resting phase) due to the harsh chemicals and will someday spring back. You can try using minoxidil on the area to see if that stimulates growth. I truly think that is your best bet.

 

-Robert

------------------------------

 

Check out the results of my surgical hair restoration performed by Dr. Jerry Cooley by visiting my Hair Loss Weblog

 

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  • 2 months later...
  • Regular Member

Hello to the people at the forum. Its been a while since I posted so thought Id give y'all an update and another point of view regarding coping with baldness.

 

As I posted earlier, I immediately shaved my head when my balding problem was noticed. It wss hard goin for a while but believe me you DO get used to the look and to be honest I now really like it although I knw id still definitely trade it in for a return for a return to my good hair days.

 

Id advise anyone who went through or is going through the self-concious, panic, helpless phases I did to take the plunge and shave it. In most cases im sure youl come to like it and because theres nothing to play with, style or try to hide, your obession with hair will definitely be reduced.

 

However BEWARE there are also problems with shaving your head, you will need to shave regularly and theres the danger of shaving bumps which ive now found out im sufering from more and more! Guess its just not meant to be easy for me

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