MINOXIDIL / WHAT IS IT ?
Just like a number of different drugs and products on the market, Minoxidil was not originally created and manufactured for the purpose of combating the loss of or thinning hair. Originally going by the name "Loniten", it was developed as an oral medication to fight high blood pressure. As research and development preceded however, it was noticed that the drug had the apparent side effect of increasing hair growth throughout the body as well as darkening the follicles.
The actual patent for the drug Minoxidil expired back in February of 1996. This expiration date allowed a number of companies to utilized this drug towards products that were focused mainly on the growth of hair assist individuals with problems of hair falling out.
The original formulas that were brought on the market, as many will recall, went under the name Rogaine and is still one of the most popular products today. A number of others have released various products containing Minoxidil in combination with other ingredients both natural and manufactured. Rogaine originally used Minoxidil at approximately a 2% level within their formula and was allowed released and became quite popular throughout the world in many countries. As the concentration of Minoxidil was increased in a number of the products over the years, including Rogaine and Provillus, some countries have placed restrictions or have banned the use altogether as the side effects that are apparent in a minority of individuals increase in proportion to the concentration of Minoxidil present in the formulas.
While most users of products containing Minoxidil have shown little or no side effects when using the products, there are a small minority who will show signs of side effects to varying degrees. It is recommended that you become familiar with these side effects and speak to your physician if you have any apprehensions before using any considered products.
Some of the more common but less serious side effects include:
- Irritation on or around the treated, area such as burning, itching or redness
- Drying of the scalp that may result in dandruff
- Mild allergic reactions such as rashes, hives or swelling areas of the face
- swollen hands or feet
- Unexplained weight gain
Individuals should stop treatment if they experience serious sides effects which may include:
- Chest pain or rapid and irregular heartbeat
- Fainting or lightheadedness
- Extreme swelling of the face or extremities
In some cases, the use of Minoxidil may actually cause hair to fall out. This is the effect of hair in the Telogen phase, which is final stage in the life of the hair follicle, to fall out prematurely before new growth can take place. This effect is commonly know as shedding. In the majority of cases, new hair growth will replace the premature effect of shedding over a short period of time.
For cat lovers, they should be aware that Minoxidil is extremely danger to the feline species. Even an inadvertent exposure to the skin can cause severe illness or death.
Minoxidil For Men
The reason for Minoxidils ability to promote hair grow is not fully understood, however it is still considered on of the best hair products for men. Its effects can be best seen with men in their early stages of hair loss. This includes individuals who have been afflicted with the problem for a long as five years. The hair growth can be observed mainly in the crown area of the scalp as well as in the immediate areas of the vertex. This is generally referred to as male pattern baldness. Minoxidil is not so successful in areas such as receding hairlines located closer to the brow.
Generally Minoxidil will show a marked reduction of hair loss and hair growth in most users. This however will only continue so long as the drug continues to be in use. Once an individual stops treatment they can be expected to return to normal hair growth cycles within 30-60 days. Most Minoxidil formulas for men have a 5% component and in some cases even higher percentages are available. It would be recommended to start with no more than the 5% solution to start in order to see if you not only receive any results but also that you do not suffer from any side effects.
Minoxidil For Women
Minoxidil for women is made up of different formulas than that provided for men. Not only are the percentages keep at lower levels, usually around the 2% range but the total formulas also consist of different supplements, herbs and vitamins that are generally more beneficial to women. Hair loss also differs in females as opposed to males in the specific way that they have more problems with hair actually thinning in the vertex region of the scalp.
Aside from the fact that women should not use any Minoxidil formulas during their pregnancy, for the most part the side effect symptoms are generally the same as for the male. Having lower percentages however may not allow for side effects to show as predominately as for a male using any of the higher percentage formulas. For the most part the resulting hair growth or materializing of any side effects are dependent completely on the individuals and their particular situation.
Minoxidil is approved by the FDA in the united States and can be bought through various media and different manufacturers within the country for use in regards to hair growth. These different products are also available in different potencies as required or preferred by different consumers. All this under the countries guidelines and laws.
With other countries and we will take for instance the nearest neighbors, Canada, while they drug Minoxidil is allowed for use the percentages allowed within the products are regulated. In the case of Minoxidil the percentages are capped at 2%. They rules and regulations differ from country to country and the onus on the individual in most cases to find the information.
If for instance you are an individual in Canada, who is ordering a product in the United states that exceeds the regulated 2% in your jurisdiction, it is possible that even if the producer will still transport it, if noticed at customs, it could be confiscated with no reimbursement or recourse for the buyer. It could also be the case that it proceeds to its destination unabated. There have been obviously cases of both happening.