Minoxidil Side Effects

Minoxidil is one of the common names you’ll encounter when looking for male pattern baldness treatments and considered effective in preventing hair loss. However, there are many minoxidil side effects to worry about before you start using the medication. Minoxidil has been shown to result in adverse effects that make it an unfavorable choice when looking for hair loss treatment. Here’s a quick overview of how it works and the profile of side effects.

What is Minoxidil?

As aforesaid, minoxidil is a treatment for male pattern baldness. It is available as a form and solution that is applied topically on the affected areas. The foam and 2% minoxidil solution are effective in rejuvenating hair growth in women with thinning hair. They fall under a class of drugs known as vasodilators. Unfortunately, it is not known how minoxidil works to rejuvenate hair growth, unlike other hair loss treatments like DHT blockers. The drug is not effective in treating receding hairline or baldness at the front of the scalp. Still, minoxidil is popular among men and women suffering from hair loss,

Minoxidil Side Effects

Minoxidil has been shown to boost hair growth and resolve thinning hair. However, it is not recommended to users 18 years and below. Hair loss treatments are also unsafe for pregnant and breastfeeding mothers. The most notable Minoxidil side effects include:

  • Itching and skin rashes
  • Acne spots at the site of application
  • Burning of the scalp
  • Soreness and inflammation at the root of the hair
  • Facial hair growth
  • Swelling of the face
  • Reddening of the skin
  • Increased hair loss

It is worth noting that minoxidil works for certain types of male pattern baldness. Minoxidil side effects may also feature rare symptoms when your body absorbs more than required. These include:

  • Chest pain
  • Dizziness, lightheadedness, and fainting
  • Changes in vision, including blurred vision
  • Irregular/fast heartbeat
  • Headache
  • Numbness or tingling of hands, feet, and face
  • Rapid weight gain
  • Flushing
  • Swelling of hands, feet, lower legs, and face

Symptoms might not show in all patients. It is advisable to contact your doctor if you experience any abnormal minoxidil side effects once you start using the medication.

Minoxidil Alternatives

With such an extensive list of potential minoxidil side effects, it isn’t the ideal solution for hair loss and baldness. There are many other options, with fewer adverse effects, including hair extensions, hairpieces, and DHT inhibitors and blockers. However, these options carry their unique side effects, so it is often advisable to stay away from hair loss pills, supplements, and medications. Instead, those who experience hair loss can target natural remedies and foods known to promote hair growth and protect follicles from DHT damages.


Minoxidil is an approved drug you can use to thicken hair and promote growth. It also has other medical uses, including lowering high blood pressure (hypertension). However, the many potential minoxidil side effects and drawbacks pose a reason to worry. It is vital to consult your doctor and determine whether the drug is safe for you. Like most hair loss treatments, it has interactions with other medications and not suitable for those who have specific allergies.

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