Achieving a successful outcome with hair loss medications is a long-term process. Just like when it took a year to grow out that cut you didn’t like, anything involving visible changes in your hair takes a while, and Finasteride treatment is no different.
If you are starting out on Finasteride, you are probably anxious to start seeing changes and wondering if you are on track.
Below, we will outline just what you should expect when starting out on a Finasteride hair loss treatment journey, including when you should start seeing baby hairs popping in, when your barber might start noticing, and when you are likely at the maximum hair loss and regrowth stage.
Luckily, the Finasteride should start laying the groundwork for better hair with the very first dose.
After taking your first Finasteride tablet, it will go to work that day helping to block the enzyme which transforms some of the testosterone in your body into dihydrotestosterone (DHT). And, since DHT is a big culprit in follicle damage and hair loss in male pattern baldness, this is a big step.
Taking Finasteride daily can help reduce your serum DHT levels by about 70%, meaning that there is much less DHT around to damage your hair follicles. Over time, this is thought to help retain hairs that would have been lost to DHT, and may give some areas a fighting chance for regrowth.
Of course, in order to keep these DHT levels low, you need to take your scheduled doses just as recommended. Finasteride has a relatively short half-life (about 5-6 hours). So, if you miss too many doses, your body won’t have Finasteride around to block DHT and your DHT production will ramp up again.
Most men will not notice any changes to their hair during the first 3 months of treatment, and this is completely normal.
During this time, your DHT levels will be kept lower each day, you may be shedding more hairs that had stopped growth and are on their way to be shed, and tiny new hairs may be pushing old hairs out and just barely poking out of the follicle.
From a distance, it is unlikely that you will see changes yet, but you may receive some comments from your barber or stylist about “baby hairs” on their way in.
The best thing you can do during this time is to stay on track with your dosing, and know that you are putting in the time and effort for better results down the road.
Starting after 3 months and up to 6 months is when most users will start seeing the results. Some men may take up to 6 months, and this can be normal as well. How long you have been losing hair, how extensive your hair loss is, your age, and other health factors may play a role in when you first start seeing results.
At this time, you have likely held on to a few month’s worth of hair that may have been shed otherwise, and those new hairs may be grown in enough to notice as well.
You will still have some hair shedding, of course, in line with the normal growth phase of hair. But, any excessive shedding has likely decreased.
Enjoy your new hair gains, but be sure to continue using Finasteride as prescribed, as full results do not come until later.
Months 7-12 are the time period where you retained hairs and new growth are really coming together.
During this time your full Finasteride hair potential is becoming realized. Most men should expect much of the full results to be in after consistent treatment for 12 months.
Experiment with new styles that fit your new ‘do, and expect comments and compliments from friends and family as changes should be pretty obvious at this time.
Hair growth and maintenance studies with Finasteride have shown that hair improvements are fully peaked at around 2 years in, and are maintained throughout 5 years with continued treatment.
The results will likely continue after this time period with continuing use of Finasteride, but the studies have only lasted 5 years at this point.
Long-term, Finasteride should now be considered your hair maintenance medication, and you must continue with Finasteride in order to maintain your regrowth.
The patient package insert notes that if the medication is stopped, there will likely be a reversal of the effect within 12 months.
Finasteride is a long-term medication to keep any hair benefits, so that should be considered before launching into a treatment regimen.
At Strut Health we carry Finasteride in its FDA-approved oral tablet form, as well as a compounded Finasteride topical formula.
The Finasteride topical formula may be a good option for men who hate taking oral medications, or could not tolerate the oral Finasteride tablets. We can also combine the topical Finasteride with Minoxidil to target different aspects of hair loss and help improve overall outcomes.
If you want to see if topical or oral Finasteride treatment is right for your hair loss, you can have a free online questionnaire-based telemedicine visit with our U.S. licensed doctors today.
If you are a good candidate for treatment with Finasteride, your medication can be shipped to your front door with our free shipping.
If you have any questions during your hair growth journey, our staff and doctors are available for free unlimited follow-ups to answer your questions along the way.