About half of young mothers feel shocked for the first months after childbirth. The beautiful, thick, and shiny hair that women enjoy during pregnancy suddenly begins to severely fall out. Is this normal? Will the hair loss stop by itself? Is it possible to make the process less intense or completely eliminate it?
Causes of postpartum hair loss
Normally, about 80-90% of the hair on your head is in the growth phase (anagen), while the rest is in the transition state (catagen) and the sleeping phase (telogen). During the telogen phase, hair falls out. We see it every day when combing and washing our hair (more information about hair structure and the hair life cycle can be found here).
During pregnancy, your hormonal balance goes through many changes. One of the many symptoms is the changing life cycle of your hair. The growth phase significantly extends. That’s why your hair becomes thicker: hair was not in a rush to leave the head, visually increasing the volume.
After birth, the hormonal balance begins to change smoothly toward the prenatal state. All the hair that received the additional months of life go back into the telogen phase, and fall out.
Therefore, hair loss after pregnancy is a temporary phenomenon. The so-called ”hair-centenarians” are finally leaving the head, which should have happened a long time ago, and there is no way to prevent it.
So there is nothing we can do about it? That’s debatable.
First of all, pregnancy is the most powerful stress on your body. It can both rejuvenate and improve a woman’s health, or give way to a number of diseases, sometimes quite serious ones. What if your hair loss is not caused by a temporary hormonal imbalance?
Time is the best answer. We need from six months to a year to regenerate the normal density and amount of hair. If your hair continues to thin, it’s time to see a doctor. You should see the doctor as soon as possible.
Besides telogen, there are other reasons that can worsen hair. The health of your hair depends on care, lifestyle, and stress. Young mothers often ignore those factors: postpartum depression, entire devotion to the baby’s needs, sleepless nights, lack of time.
Remember, you are the queen of your family, and a role model for your kids. It is quite possible to reduce your hair loss after pregnancy, and your beauty will bring joy to you and your loved ones. So what can be done in this situation?
Beauty begins from within. By eating healthy, you will strengthen your hair growth and improve its condition. You can include vitamins and supplements in your diet if the doctor finds it necessary.
Your diet is also important for the baby, especially if you are breastfeeding. By the way, breastfeeding slows down hair loss: the hormonal level returns to the prenatal state not so quickly.
All women know about shampoo, conditioner, balms, masks and oils. But after giving birth, check out the shelf in the bathroom more carefully: what brands are standing there?
Don’t try to save on cosmetics for your hair. Let it be expensive and organic. You deserve it, and your baby won’t ingest the harmful ingredients in your milk.
Use a wide-tooth comb with an anti-static coating (if it’s plastic) to minimize hair damage (article about proper combing). Don’t abuse styling products.
Yes, in the modern world, staying calm is almost a dream. Try to protect yourself from stress as much as possible.There are many ways to deal with stress without pills (antidepressants and sedatives while breastfeeding can be prescribed only by the doctor!). Here is the simplest remedy: meditation. Just sit or lie down for 10 minutes, close your eyes, and breathe deeply and evenly, watching your breath.
A haircut will not only reduce your hair loss, but also make it almost unnoticeable. Short hair does not gather in frightening tangles on the comb, as long hair does. There is no time to take care of long hair, and the lack of proper attention will hurt its quality.
Finally, what woman doesn’t like to change her look from time to time? After childbirth, this can be an especially valuable measure. Be careful with hair coloring cosmetics – choose natural products.
Avoid hot styling
Hot air from the dryer or flat iron is not what your hair needs – your hair will get thinner and more brittle. Dry your hair with cool air or without a hair dryer at all. Hot styling can be done a couple times per month. A short haircut usually doesn’t require those styling methods, so your hair will be healthier.
Tight and complicated hairstyles with tons of pins and combs is an unnecessary trauma to your hair. Hair needs to be pulled up neatly, so you feel comfortable. Just make sure your don’t have this feeling of strong tightness. Otherwise, your healthy hair will start to fall out.
Losing your hair after pregnancy is quite normal, so you don’t need to worry. Give your hair extra attention, and take proper care from the inside and outside – and your hair loss will go away soon.