“Is your dad bald? Because if he is, that explains why you’re bald too”. Most bald men have undoubtedly heard something similar to this, or even in the opposite way. “Did you know that you actually get your balding gene from your Mom’s dad?” Both of these theories can’t be true.. or can they?
The answer? Both the genes from your mother and your father will have an input as to whether you’re going to be affected by balding.
Whilst scientists are still unsure of which side is more impactful (if you read different studies and reports, you’ll find different verdicts), it can be undoubtedly said that you’re more likely to go bald if your father is bald, or the baldness genes are on your mother’s side too.
The Case for Maternal Genetic Baldness
One of the more well known studies that seemingly proved that seemingly proved that your hair loss is mainly inherited from your mother is this one. It was performed in Germany back in 2005, so many years have passed since this study was undertaken and developments have been made in Science since then. It does however, still stand as one of the more prominent researches in the field.
Essentially, the research shows that men start to go bald because of the x chromosome. The Androgen receptor, which is on the X chromosome, is the primary reason that men start to bald. Men get their X chromosome from their mother and their Y chromosome from their mother, which is the reason that this study concluded that men get their balding genetics from their mother.
The Case for Paternal Genetic Baldness
Whilst it’s correct that men get the X chromosome from their mothers side and this is important, there’s more to it than that. Different research studies also show that men who have bald fathers are more likely to go bald too, which means that it isn’t just down to your mom.
It is correct that your mothers hereditary genes are more dominant, but that doesn’t mean to say that your dads side has no impact. It’s a combination of both sides. If your moms father is bald, then you’re more likely to be bald than if your dad is bad. But, if your moms father is bald and your dad is bald, then you’re even more likely to go bald yourself!
Balding is slightly complex, and it’s likely that it’s a mixture of both your fathers side and your mothers side which may cause your baldness. Now, this doesn’t mean to say that it has to be directly from your parents generation; balding can be passed down from many generations. So, if your parents and their parents aren’t bald, that doesn’t necessarily mean you aren’t going to go bald – you could get it from your great uncle, or even further back.
This is how it’s perfectly normal for one sibling to be bald as a badger, but another sibling to have a full head of hair. There’s really nothing you can do about having the balding chromosome, so it’s up to you whether you’d like to try and combat the issue with things like a Minoxidil Shampoo or just accept the fact you’re going to gradually go bald as you age (I’d recommend the latter, but that’s just me!).
How to combat balding
As I said, there is really notthing you can do to change your genetics. You can however, mitigate any hair loss that you’re expecting to experience in the future. The best way to do this is to consider using some type of over the counter synthetic drug like Minoxidil or Propecia. Whilst they are unlikely to help you enable you to have any hair grow back, they can undoubtedly mitigate any loss you’re experiencing and slow down the process.
It must be said however, that both of these drugs are not without their own risks. You literally have to apply minoxidil twice a day, which might not sound like much now; but it’ll get annoying. Along with that, if you try Propecia then it has been linked to erectile dysfunction. What would you rather have, your hair or your virility? I know what I’d prefer!