May7-12, 03:38 PM
Introductory Story (feel free to ignore):
In the summer of 2011 I realized my hairline was receding to unmanageable levels even though I had just turned 20. I searched for drug treatments and finasteride came up as clearly the best choice - almost every study showed it was significantly more effective than minoxidil. I tried both finasteride and minoxidil. It felt weird. I had always noted that I lost the most hair when I was thinking hard about school problems - it's as if I was pushing more testosterone around to help me solve the problem and it felt damn good despite the dozens of hairs falling onto the paper as I sketched out the solution. I searched based on this and found a little bit of scientific evidence that both finasteride and minoxidil might make me a worse thinker:
Finasteride Treatment Inhibits Adult Hippocampal Neurogenesis in Male Mice
Influence of potassium channel modulators on cognitive processes in mice
The irony of actually being granted the choice between intelligence and beauty was too amusing. I stopped treatment for the time being.Then I bedded a girl that I wanted to keep so naturally I gave finasteride another shot. I felt worse during the day after taking it the night before. I felt amazing every time I missed a dose. But I reasoned that being bald is not only bad for one's career in a field where younger candidates get employed way more easily, but also the depression from being bald would be much worse and extinguish my productivity. Not going bald had considerable tangible monetary value anyway you looked at it, so I continued the treatment. The effects were phenomenal, I was regrowing what hair I had lost before at breakneck speed. Then I fell ill due to a vitamin deficiency and stopped taking finasteride in the winter of 2012. I lost the hair I had gained just as fast and then some.
So finasteride inhibits hippocampal neurogenesis in mice at what are surely gratuitous doses according to this one paper (linked above). Not a real cause for alarm. Nevertheless I wish to counteract however small this effect might be at 1 mg in humans by supplementing with something that promotes hippocampal neurogenesis - estrogen for instance. Has anyone ever tried something like this? Does anyone know of better promoters than estrogen? I don't mind being a guinea pig as I'm not a risk-averse person to say the least. I would like to hear if anyone (preferably with more knowledge of biology than I) has other suggestions before I start taking estrogen and praying that I don't grow breasts. Thanks.
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