Hello, I was hoping you could clear up something regarding the percentage of men who go bald or experience thinning.
I’ve read that only 50% of men are bald by 50, but I’ve also heard that the American Hairloss Association did a study that found 2/3 of men are bald by 35, and 85% of men are thinning by 50. These statistics seem in conflict with each other.
Does the American Hairloss Associations study reflect the percentage in ALL men, or just American men? Websites I’ve been on are inconsistent on which one it is. If you could clarify, I’d appreciate it.
To my knowledge there isn’t a landmark study of epidemiology or the prevalence of male pattern balding in men. Male pattern balding is genetic and it follows a “pattern” as the name implies. Thus by the definition, a slight front corner recession of a Norwood 2 could be termed a mature hairline which is not “balding”. However, when most people hear the term balding they assume a full Norwood 6 or 7 type of balding. The Class 3 pattern reflect the early corner recession in a maturing hairine (see: HERE)
I often write that about 50% of men have the genetic make up to have some type of balding (Norwood 3 to 7). I often write about 7 to 8% of men are Norwood 7 (completely bald with only a 2 1/2 inch rim of hair around the back and sides of the head). It is also understood most male pattern hair loss may begin after puberty, but most men start their balding process in their teenage years to their late 20s, and by the time you are in your middle age 40-50 you would have an established pattern of balding (or no balding). You will find these numbers may be variable depending on the source as you suggested.
The American Hairloss Associations on the website claim that by the “age of thirty-five two-thirds of American men will experience some degree of appreciable hair loss (I doubt this statistic), and I believe that by the age of fifty approximately 50% of men have significantly thinning hair” not the 85% suggested by the American Hairloss Association. I do not know where these statistics come from. Furthermore the term “thinning” can also mean gradual change of the character of the hair as one ages that is not genetic balding (just more fine hair evolves). Men who never go bald will have some thinning as they age but they will not go bald or show a “patterns” of balding as depicted in the Norwood scale.