Premature baldness is a problem plaguing people as early as in their twenties. Stress, pollution, poor nutrition and disrupted sleep patterns are key reasons behind premature baldness. A noteworthy solution, an expert says, lies in hair restoration -- a market growing at a rapid pace.
"Baldness makes you look more than of your age and impacts the personality and confidence manifolds. Hair restoration provides a solution to these problems and makes sure that you get your confidence back along with your hair," said Ajay Dubey, master surgeon of hair implantation clinic DHI.
Headquartered in the capital, DHI ventured in India in 2008 and has 17 centers across the country, catering to the research, diagnosis and treatment of hair and scalp disorders.
"Hair fall and baldness is turning out to be more of a trend than rarity. People even in their early twenties are stricken with the premature baldness. Along with hormonal and genetic factors, it is also the kind of lifestyle we lead today that is to be blamed; the main culprits happen to be stress, pollution, poor nutrition and disrupted sleeping patterns," Dubey said.
Apart from the fact that a lot of people are resorting to cosmetic treatments for tailored looks, hair restoration is also on the rise in their list of demands.
In India, hair is a very sensitive issue among both men and women. Rapidly receding hairline and hair fall due to factors like pollution, stress, rising work pressure, improper eating habits, usage of chemical shampoos, rising heredity and hormonal disorders leading to baldness are growing today and are seen to be hitting both the genders at quiet a young age.
"Increasing consciousness of one's looks and its impact on one's confidence has created a growing demand of cosmetic surgeries. People who have the resources or who are aware about different techniques to enhance their looks are now investing their valuable time and money in them. Not only is the demand for hair loss treatments continuing to grow, but also people are now openly talking about it," Dubey said.
He also pointed out at how "along with opportunities, there are challenges as well because the competition is ever increasing".
"Good quality treatments cost more and there is no insurance coverage for this procedure, leading to only a smaller section of society going for the procedure. The presence of quacks and unethical practices in the overall market are major hurdles," he added.
Deciding whether you actually need hair restoration or not depends on multiple factors -- age, extent of hair loss, hair texture, contrast between hair color and skin and individual's expectations out of the procedure.
But the procedure doesn't come without its share of risks.
"While hair transplantation is safe more or less, the method has certain risks involved. Poor growth of transplanted area, depending on how the scalp responds to the treatment; damage to the follicles prior to transplantation; excessive scarring or pigment changes in the skin; and cysts or swelling though happen rarely, but are certainly a possibility," Dubey explained.
Also, in the case that you do not have "severe baldness" and only want to improve your looks and style, choose a salon over a clinic for a one-time solution.
"But for lasting results and treatments, clinics (which have qualified doctors who treat the problem medically giving permanent/long term solutions) are a better option," he said.
A hair restoration treatment can cost anything above Rs.90,000 depending on the clinic, the doctor and the complexity involved in conducting the procedure, and the market for it is growing rapidly.