If there is any marketplace vulnerable to con artists it is the hair loss market. Insufficient research combined with the emotive nature of hair loss provides an open invitation for tricksters. The market may be awash with empty claims but there is some research to guide you in this arena.
Although limited, research suggests supplements containing methylsulfonylmethane (MSM)- a sulfur chemical compound found in plants, animals, and humans – may promote hair growth.
MSM is commonly used as an oral supplement to treat arthritis pain and swelling but evidence suggests its remedial benefits may extend to hair loss.
According to research, MSM sulfur can form bonds essential to strengthening hair and influencing hair growth.
One study tested the effect of MSM and magnesium ascorbyl phosphate (MAP) on hair growth and alopecia treatment.
There are other things you can try if your hair loss is causing you distress.
But most treatments aren’t available on the NHS, so you’ll have to pay for them.
It is worth noting that no treatment is 100 percent effective.
According to the NHS, finasteride and minoxidil are the main treatments for male pattern baldness.
Some wigs are available on the NHS, but you may have to pay unless you qualify for financial help.
You can get free wigs and fabric supports if you are:
- Under 16
- 16-18 and in full-time education
- A hospital inpatient
- A war pensioner and the wig or fabric support is for your accepted disablement and you have a valid war pension exemption certificate.
You can also get free wigs and fabric support if you or your partner – including civil partner – receive, or you’re under the age of 20 and the dependant of someone receiving:
- Income Support
- Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
- Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
- Pension Credit Guarantee Credit
- Universal Credit and meet the criteria – you can use this NHS website to check your eligibility.
You may also benefit from joining a support group, or speaking to other people in the same situation on online forums.
Try these online support groups:
- Alopecia UK
- Alopecia Awareness.