In this article, I discuss:
1. What is a hair transplant?
2. Why choose a hair transplant?
3. What are the downsides?
4. How much will a hair transplant cost me?
What is a hair transplant?
Hair transplants are a form a surgical hair restoration, one of the most popular ones since it is less radical and than other surgical ways to restore hair. Hair transplants have been done by doctors for a long time, and the techniques have had many years to develop into more and more sophisticated procedures. The basic idea behind a hair transplant is that hair is removed from the back and sides of your scalp and implanted on the area of the head were the hair loss is most severe, which is usually on the top of the head or at a declining hair line. Hair on the back of the head is usually not affected by male pattern baldness, and can therefore be used to restore other areas.
Why choose a hair transplant?
One of the biggest advantages with a hair transplantation is that is permanent. Contrary to other popular hair restoration techniques, you don't have to stay on prescription drugs for the rest of your life or cover your scalp in ointment twice a day. The hair used in a hair transplant is from your own body. Once the hair transplants are finished, no follow up procedures or continued treatments are required.
What are the downsides?
As with all surgical procedures there is always risks and pain involved. The removal and implantation of hair is painless, since you will have received a series of anaesthetic injections into the scalp area. Receiving these injections can however be the source of a considerable amount of pain and discomfort, especially since many of us instinctively dislike having needles inserted to our head. If you will experience a lot of pain or not is very individual, some people claim that it hurt really bad and wished that their doctor had warned them more in advance, while others just experienced a series of mild stings. It is just like taking a blood sample or going to the dentist, in the sense that some people are very sensitive to pain and needles while others hardly feel it at all.
The hair transplant is permanent, and no follow up procedures or continued treatment is required, but keep in mind that you might have to go through several procedures to get your desired amount of hair. If there is a very limited amount of movable hair on the back and sides of your head, this can also be a reason to avoid a hair transplant.
There is always the risk of visible scars on the scalp after a hair transplant. Small scars are always formed where your hair has been removed, but this is covered up by the hair around it and is usually no problem. If you keep on loosing hair after the transplantation, or choose a very short hair cut, the scars can however become visible. It is important to find a doctor who is not only able to make a hair transplant that looks good today, but one that will continue to look good and natural in the future as well. You might want to combine the surgery with some other treatment, like pills or ointment, to prevent further hair loss.
How much will a hair transplant cost me?
It is hard to estimate the cost of your hair transplant, since the price varies enormously depending on which hair transplant clinic you choose. The cost has also decreased considerably during the last few years at some clinics due to competition. Keep in mind that the cost is only one factor to take in to account when choosing a clinic and the cheapest ones might not always be the best. On the other hand, there is absolutely no guarantee that a celebrated, overpriced clinic will do a better job than a more reasonably charging one. Generally speaking, $ 2,500 -10,000 per session is considered standard and you will usually need at least four sessions. Before you make any decisions, remember to make an estimation of how much keeping your hair will cost you in the long run if you chose some other method, e.g. prescription drugs, wigs or ointments.
Kevin Allman runs a Male Hair Loss Resource Center . At his website, you can find audio clips and articles about dealing with Hair Loss. You can also ask any questions in the forum and he'll reply as soon as possible!