Webinar: How Hormones Affect Your Hair

Our webinar series is kicking back up next week Tuesday May 4th at 12:00PM and the topic is "How Hormones Affect Your Hair".

Hormones can have a significant impact on the health of our hair, both naturally and from medications and treatments now being offered. Women will often experience changes in their hair during pregnancy and menopause, when hormones are fluctuating naturally. However, many of the birth control options available today affect our hormones, which can have an impact on our hair, some positive and some negative. We have seen an increase in the use of hormone replacement therapy for various conditions, which can also directly affect our hair as well. During this webinar, we will look at how hormones affect our hair and how and why our hormone levels change and what we can do to protect our hair.

If you happened to miss any of our past webinars, they are all posted on our website and the button below will bring you to our Webinar Series page. Just a reminder that we do offer special discounts and give-a-ways to webinar attendees, so it is always best to attend the webinar if you can.

Posted by Dr. Mary Wendel

2021 Webinar Series Kick Off

After the positive feedback we received in 2020, we are excited to announce the return of our webinar series, with the first webinar of 2021 being hosted on Wednesday January 20th at 12:30PM.  We found that webinars not only provided a great way to deliver information to our patients and perspective patients, but with the Q&A portion, they are quite interactive.  Each webinar will cover a different topic and will always end with a Q&A where you can ask questions with the panelists.  While we will be posting the webinars on our website afterwards, it is best to attend the actual webinar as attendees do receive specials and discounts.

It is important to register for each webinar that you would like to attend as we do limit the number of spots in these webinars to ensure that attendees can ask questions and we can get through all of the questions in a reasonable time.  Also, if there are certain topics that you would like covered please let us know.  Our goal is to provide information that our patients find useful.

Below is some information on the upcoming currently scheduled webinars.  Please let us know if there are any specific topics that you would like covered.

Wednesday January 20thTresse Rx and Medi Tresse Hair Care Line

The past 6 months saw the introduction of the Tresse Rx Healthy Hair Program and Medi Tresse Hair Care product line.  Tresse Rx includes both a topical growth factor serum and mico-needle applicator, as well as a complete hair loss supplement program.  The Medi Tresse Hair Care product line includes shampoos, conditioners, and deep treatments for healthier hair.   During this webinar the panelists will go over each product in depth and to help you understand how the products work and who they may benefit.

Wednesday January 27thWhat is the right supplement for me?

Hair loss supplements have become common place, however, with the many options available, many patients feel overwhelmed about where to start.  During this webinar the panelists will look into the role hair loss supplements play in a treatment plan and review different supplement options.

Wednesday February 3rdCommon Questions about Platelet Rich Plasma Therapy

Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) Therapy has become one of the most popular treatments for female hair loss, and clinical studies have proven how effective it can be. However, as there is no standard protocol, which means how it is performed can vary greatly from one practice to another. During this webinar we answer some of the common questions that we receive around Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) Therapy.

Wednesday February 10thMinoxidil - What is it and how it is used as a treatment for female hair loss?

Minoxidil is the only topical FDA approved treatment for hair loss, however, how it has been used in the treatment of female hair loss has changed over time.  While many patients have tried a minoxidil product in the past, like Rogain®, the products that contain minoxidil have changed overtime and for the better.  During this webinar we will look at how minoxidil as a treatment for female hair loss has changed over time and how we recommend using it today.

Posted by Your Medi Tresse Team

Hair Rejuvenation New Year’s Resolutions For 2021

Happy New Year’s and on to 2021! With the challenges that were presented to us this past year, I think we all get a pass for not keeping our 2020 New Year’s resolutions.  While the difficulties of this pandemic are not over, as the calendar flips to 2021, it does so with a great sense of hope for all of us.  With that, we wanted to offer everyone, regardless of where you are on your hair rejuvenation journey, a New Year’s resolution for the health of your hair.

Get on a hair loss supplement. 

If we learned anything in 2020 about hair loss, it is how much stress and external factors affect our hair.  Due to the increased stress of 2020, not only did we see an increase in complaints in excessive shedding from our patients, but there was significant news coverage related to this topic as this was seen everywhere.  A good hair loss supplement routine not only makes your hair healthier but can help minimize the impact when these stressful events occur.

If your last appointment with us was prior to this pandemic, schedule a follow up. 

The pandemic has now been going on for over 10 months.  It is recommended that you be seen every 6 to 12 months, just like going to the dentist.  As we have seen, a lot can change during that time and it is so important to follow up so that we can track your progress and make sure that no adjustments are needed to your treatment plan.  While we have significant safety protocols in place for the safety of our staff and patients, we know not everyone is comfortable coming in for an appointment right now.  In that case, we really recommend a video appointment so that we can at least check in and see how things are going.

If your treatment was interrupted or you stopped treatment, get back on that treatment plan.

As our lives were interrupted and put-on pause for various reasons during the pandemic, many patients had their treatment interrupted or stopped following their treatment plan.  It is important to remember that it is never to late to restart your treatments.  Whether you are overdue for an Optimal Platelet Concentration Therapy Booster or stopped using your laser cap, now is the time to get back on track.  If you have had any changes in your medical history (i.e., new medications) certainly let us know so that we can make sure that the treatment plan is still appropriate for you.

If you are currently following your treatment plan, keep at it!

If you started a treatment this past year or have been treating your hair loss for a while, keep at it! I am sure there have been some ups and downs, but you are doing all the right things, and being consistent with your treatments will give you the best chance for a successful outcome.  I know we all want immediate results, but it can sometimes take up to 12 months to see results so do not get discouraged and do not stop your treatments.

If you have never been seen by a hair loss specialist, schedule a consultation.

We cannot stress enough how important it is to be seen by a hair loss specialist as soon as you notice signs of hair loss.  The most common forms of hair loss are progressive, which means that without proper treatment the hair loss will continue.  It is important to remember that this does not mean you will go bald like men do, as women lose their hair differently than men.  It just means that the hair loss will get worse without treatment.  Female hair loss is quite complex with a variety of causes and it really takes a specialist to be able to diagnose the cause and determine an appropriate treatment plan.

Wherever you are on your hair rejuvenation journey, just know that the team at Medi Tresse is here to support you and help you keep your hair health New Year’s resolution.  Do not hesitate to reach out to our offices and have a safe and healthy 2021.

Posted by Your Medi Tresse Team

The Importance of A Virtual Consultation

We have heard from some patients about whether doing a virtual telehealth consultation is worth doing.  While our offices’ safety protocols meet, and in many instances exceed, all local and federal safety regulations, we understand that everyone’s comfort level is a little different at this point in time.  We also know that due to travel restrictions in different states, coming into the office is not an option for all patients.  With that said, for patients that are unable to or do not feel comfortable coming in for an in-office consultation, we would strongly recommend a virtual telehealth consultation for the following reasons.

Most types of hair loss are progressive and will continue to get worse without treatment.

First and foremost, many types of hair loss, including androgenic alopecia (Female Pattern Hair Loss), which is the most common type of hair loss are progressive.  That means that the hair loss will continue to get worse without proper evaluation and treatment.

Preventing hair loss is easier than re-growing what was lost.

Although we see many women who have already experienced quite a bit of loss and have successfully treated them, the importance of treating hair loss early is key.  It’s true that once the scalp is visible, up to 50% of your hair density has already been lost. As more and more hairs become “affected” they eventually go into hibernation, so to speak. In this dormant state, it is more difficult to fully restore a hair. The key is to start treatments early (before a significant amount of loss has already occurred) and nip hair loss in the bud.

A lot can be accomplished in a virtual telehealth consultation.

Back in the Spring when we started offering virtual consultations, our staff was honestly hesitant about them.  There was concern that we would miss something in our evaluation of the patient, however, we quickly realized that we are able to do a very thorough evaluation and get patients started on some sort of treatment that they would otherwise be holding off.  When these patients came in later for in-person follow-ups, we were very happy that they were able to effectively start treatments many months earlier than if they had not done the virtual visit.

There are many great at-home treatment options now available.

Thankfully, at home treatment options have come a long way and there are many clinically proven options that patients can start in the comfort of their home.  From low level laser therapy (LLLT) to supplements to topical micro-needling with growth factors, our staff will be able to customize an effective home treatment plan that you will be able to start immediately.  While many patients do take advantage of our in-office treatments, many of our patients only utilize at home treatments and with great success.

We understand that this has been a difficult year that has only gotten more difficult.  We also know that there are many things we have had to put off, but treating your hair loss does not need to be one of them.

If you are interested in scheduling an in-person or virtual consultation do not hesitate to reach out to our office today.

 

Dr. Wendel Interviewed by NBC10 About COVID-19 and Hair Loss

Dr. Wendel was recently interviewed by NBC10 regarding the impact of COVID-19 and stress on hair.  Check out the video below!

Hair Loss Awareness Month - Dr. Wendel's Hair Loss Story

Like most years, August is National Hair Loss Awareness Month. Fortunately, awareness for hair loss in women is increasing, and with that awareness comes improved evaluation and treatments.  Up until about 10 years ago, there wasn’t much to offer women except minoxidil.  But things are rapidly changing.

I believe many of you know that I also suffer from Female Androgenic Alopecia, or FAGA. I always tell my patients, if you’re not sure if it runs in your family, take a close look at whoever is sitting at your family’s holiday dinner table.  Well, around my table was my immediate family, including my parents and two brothers.  Both my parents had a full head of hair, as did both my brothers.  But also at my table was my maternal grandfather who had thinning hair, as well as my paternal grandmother who sadly, wore a wig because her hair was so thin.  So there it was.  I always had fine hair, but enough to cover completely. But when I was pre-menopausal I started to notice some “see through” areas right in the front.  When it seemed to be getting worse, after a couple of years I started myself on minoxidil, first 2%, then 5%.  I was able to use it for a couple of years, but then my scalp became so inflamed I had to stop it.  After awhile I tried again, but unfortunately, the burning, itching, and scabbing happened again.  So I stopped and had nothing else to try at the time.

Fast forward about 15 years and fortunately now there are 5% minoxidil products like Formula PM which don’t contain the alcohol which had caused my irritation in the past.   I also use a Laser Cap faithfully every other day, as well as my  daily hair supplement Nutrofol and Lock RX to keep my scalp healthy, decrease shedding and help grow newer, stronger hair. I also know that our newest PRP treatment, known as Optimal Platelet Concentration (OPC) therapy is available if I decide I need that extra stimulation to grow stronger, thicker hair.   And while I presently don’t need it, we also offer micro-pigmentation, which uses a semi-permanent dying technique to gently color the scalp to fill in the areas that look thin.

So, have these treatments helped me?  Absolutely, YES.  I know that our Tresse Rejuvenation Therapy works. We see improvement in our patients every day. When I look at my own photos from ten years ago, my hair is healthier and fuller now.  My hair will always be fine, and I know that I will need to continue these treatments, but I am confident that I will never need that wig that my poor grandmother used so many years ago!

So let’s celebrate Hair Loss Awareness Month, knowing that because of improved awareness newer treatments are being studied, not just for Androgenic Alopecia, but for Alopecia Areata and Scarring Alopecia as well.

If you think you would benefit from an evaluation, or want to hear more about our Tresse Rejuvenation Therapy, give us a call.  We presently  are doing both in person consults as well as video consultations, for those not quite ready to venture out.

Stay safe and enjoy the rest of your summer!

Posted by Dr. Mary Wendel

Psoriasis and Gut Health

I recently came across some research in the Journal of Family Medicine and Primary Care called “The Role of Gut Microbiodome in the Pathogenesis of Psoriasis and the Therapeutic Effects of Probiotics” that I felt was quite interesting and pertinent for our patients for a two reasons.  First, we see a number of patients with psoriasis of the scalp, which leads to temporary hair loss.  I myself suffer from psoriasis.  Secondly, it really reinforced the importance of taking a systemic treatment approach, which I will expand on shortly.

For those that are not familiar with psoriasis, psoriasis is an autoimmune disease that affects up to 7.5 million Americans.  Psoriasis is a chronic disease that most commonly presents as red scaly patches on the skin and psoriasis flare ups come and go.  Unfortunately, there is no cure, but there are ways to manage the flareups when they occur and decrease their likely hood of experiencing them through lifestyle changes.  While psoriasis can occur on all parts of the body, psoriasis of the scalp is one of the most common, with a 2016 paper estimating that 80% of those with psoriasis will have a flareup on the scalp[i].  Psoriasis itself does not cause hair loss, however, it can be quite itchy and when you itch the scalp you can damage the follicle and hair leading to loss.

What the “The Role of Gut Microbiodome in the Pathogenesis of Psoriasis and the Therapeutic Effects of Probiotics” found was there may be link between our gut health and the immune response that causes psoriasis.  When the bacteria in the gut is out of balance, it can cause a condition known as bacterial dysbiosis, which is known to cause chronic inflammatory conditions in the skin.  While we often use treatments that specifically target the affected area, the researchers felt that we should consider treating systemically as well, which in this case would be through targeting the bacteria in the gut with probiotics.

Anyone that has been treated at Medi Tresse knowns that we are strong believers in utilizing a multi-therapy approach that also include systemic treatments that focus on nutrition and gut health.  The health of our scalp and hair are directly affected by the total health of our bodies.  While utilizing treatments like Optimal Platelet Concentration Therapy and Low Level Laser Therapy that directly target the scalp, it is important to support these treatments with a systemic approach through the use nutritional and gut health supplements.  Our bodies are complex and extremely intertwined.  While we are only scratching the surface on the importance of gut health, it is becoming more clear that it plays a strong role in the health of our hair.

Posted by Dr. Mary Wendel

[i] Blakely, Kim and Melinda Gooderham. “Management of scalp psoriasis: current perspectives” Psoriasis (Auckland, N.Z.) vol. 6 33-40. 29 Mar. 2016, doi:10.2147/PTT.S85330

Hair Loss in the News - Ricki Lake and Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley Share Their Story

When we opened Medi Tresse almost five years ago, our goal was not just to offer great treatments to women experiencing hair loss, more than that, we wanted to help bring the conversation about female hair loss out in the open. Because our society has not been willing to have this conversation out in the open, many women experiencing hair loss never seek treatment, which causes them to feel like they have to suffer in silence and feel helpless about their situation. As a woman who has experienced hair loss, I know how deeply emotional the experience can be.  While we still have a ways to go with getting our society to truly have the discussion, recent stories from Ricki Lake and Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley give me hope that we are moving in the right direction.  For those that have not seen their stories, I would describe both of them as heartbreaking and courageous. As different as their stories are, they both struggled in silence before gathering the courage to speak openly about their hair loss journey.  I am in awe of their courage.

I have placed their Instagram post's in full below, because each of their stories is so personal and I think it is important to hear them in their own words.

However, before getting to their posts, I just want to leave you with one big take away.  It is 2020 and celebrities and public officials that are experiencing hair loss are still feeling that they need to suffer in silence.  You can see how hard it was for Lake and Congresswoman Pressley to share their stories.  I hope their stories can help show you that while hair loss is very emotional, you are NOT alone. If you are experiencing hair loss, schedule an appointment with a female hair loss specialist that can diagnose the cause of your hair loss and help guide you through your treatment options, while providing you with the emotional support you need.  There is no need to suffer in silence anymore.

Ricki Lake's Post

View this post on Instagram

Liberated and Free, Me. First things first, I am not sick. (THANK GOD.) I am not having a mid-life crisis. nor am I having a mental breakdown, though I have been suffering. Suffering mostly in silence off and on for almost 30 years. AND I am finally ready to share my secret. Deep breath Ricki…. Here goes….. I have been struggling with hair loss for most of my adult life. It has been debilitating, embarrassing, painful, scary, depressing, lonely, all the things. There have been a few times where I have even felt suicidal over it. Almost no one in my life knew the level of deep pain and trauma I was experiencing. Not even my therapist/s over the years knew my truth. I know that by sharing my truth, I will be striking a chord with so so many women and men. I am not alone in this and my goal is to help others while at the same time unshackle myself from this quiet hell I have been living in. Ever since I played Tracy Turnblad in the original Hairspray back in 1988 and they triple-processed and teased my then healthy virgin hair every 2 weeks during filming, my hair was never the same. (Yes, that was all my own hair in the film.) From Hairspray to Hairless. 🙁 In my case, I believe my hair loss was due to many factors, yo-yo dieting, hormonal birth control, radical weight fluctuations over the years, my pregnancies, genetics, stress, and hair dyes and extensions. Working as talent on various shows and movies, whether DWTS or my talk show, also took its toll on my fine hair. I got used to wearing extensions, really just over the last decade. All different kinds, tried them all, the ones that are glued on, the tape-ins, the clip ins, and then into a total hair system that I hated, and finally to a unique solution that really did work pretty well for me for the last 4 or 5 years. I tried wigs on a few occasions but never could get used to them. It all felt fake and I was super self-conscious and uncomfortable. I’ve been to many doctors, gotten steroid shots in my head, taking all the supplements and then some. My hair would recover and then shed again. It was maddening. To read more: please go to my Facebook page. ❤️

A post shared by Ricki Lake (@rickilake) on

Congresswoman Ayanna Pressley's Post

View this post on Instagram

As a Black woman, the personal is political. My hair story is no exception. Sharing a very personal story today to create space for others: @the.root

A post shared by Ayanna Pressley (@ayannapressley) on

Posted by Mary Wendel, MD

Can Melatonin Help with Hair Loss?

When people think of melatonin, they often think of it as a sleep aid, but some studies have shown that it could potentially be beneficial for the treatment of hair loss.  So what is melatonin? Melatonin is a hormone that is naturally produced in the body and regulates the sleep cycle.  Melatonin levels typically increase at night, which is why some patients that suffer from insomnia take melatonin orally to help elevate their levels and hopefully sleep better.  However, some studies have shown that when used topically, melatonin can actually help treat hair loss.

In 2012, an article in the International Journal of Trichology reviewed 5 clinical studies on the use of topical melatonin for the treatment of androgenic alopecia, also known as male or female pattern hair loss, on both men and women.   The studies were quite favorable as they showed a decrease in the severity of hair loss, especially with women, an increase in density, and an increase in negative hair-pull tests (a test used to determine active shedding).  It is important to note that patients in these studies showed good tolerability of the treatment with minimal side effects. [i]  It is believed that using melatonin topically works in the treatment of hair loss, because it is a powerful anti-oxidant and hair appears to be impacted by oxidative stress, specifically premature loss.  Cells within the skin and the hair follicles also have melatonin receptors, which leads us to believe that melatonin plays a role in the hair life cycle.

Even with the positive studies, topical melatonin has not caught on in the US as a treatment for hair loss.  Minoxidil has become the sole recommendation for most providers, as it is the only FDA approved topical treatment for hair loss.  However, minoxidil can be quite irritating for some patients.  At Medi Tresse we have been reviewing topical melatonin products currently on the market to see if there are any that meet our strict evidence based requirements so that we can find an option for patients that found minoxidil irritating or may be looking for a more natural option than minoxidil.  We will certainly keep you updated, but we are excited at the prospect of being able to offer another great treatment option to our patients.

Posted by Your Medi Tresse Team

[i] Fischer, Tobias W et al. “Topical melatonin for treatment of androgenetic alopecia.” International journal of trichology vol. 4,4 (2012): 236-45. doi:10.4103/0974-7753.111199

Postpartum Hair Loss

In our October newsletter I had mentioned how my daughter-law was experiencing hair loss after the birth of her daughter in August.  Afterwards, we received a number of emails from patients asking for more information on postpartum hair loss.  It is important to remember that postpartum hair loss is extremely common.  Most women that have a baby experience some amount of shedding postpartum.  With all my children, it seemed like as soon as I hit the three-month mark, I was finding my hairs everywhere in my house.  While it is common, it does not make it any less shocking or impactful when it happens.  So why does it happen?

For those unfamiliar with the life cycle of a hair follicle, it is important to understand it and how it comes into play with postpartum hair loss.  There are three stages in the life cycle of a hair follicle: Anagen, Catagen, and Telogen.

During pregnancy, the hormonal changes in your body cause the anagen phase to extend, which makes hairs that you have become thicker and hairs that you would normally shed stay attached.  After the pregnancy as your hormones go back to your normal levels, all the hairs that you would have normally lost over the previous nine months begin to move to the catagen and eventually the telogen phase, which lasts around three to four months, and is the reason you start to see shedding at around three months postpartum.  This type of hair loss is known as a Telogen Effluvium and presents as significant shedding.  For many women, the shedding brings their hair to levels consistent with what they had pre-pregnancy.  However, for some women the shedding can continue and cause them to lose more hair than they had prior to being pregnant.

It is important to remember, that regardless of how much hair you lose with postpartum shedding, the hair almost always grows back on its own.  However, there are treatments available to help decrease the amount of shedding that occurs and speed up regrowth if the shedding was severe and you lost more hair than you started with prior to the pregnancy.  Treatment options for postpartum patients vary depending on whether the patient is breastfeeding.   Typically for patients experiencing a Telogen Effluvium shedding, we would recommend Low-Level Laser Therapy (LLLT), Formula 82M, and either Nutrafol or Viviscal.  However, if the patient is breastfeeding, we would not recommend Formula 82M, Nutrafol, or Viviscal, so the treatment plan would be limited to Low-Level Laser Therapy (LLLT).

Posted by Dr. Mary Wendel