Let’s begin by saying that postpartum alopecia is one more known name of this common condition that affects many women. When these hairs are shed, some areas may notice thinning or bald patches. Hair loss symptoms after pregnancy typically begin around three to four months after childbirth.
What are the reasons for hair loss after pregnancy?
Pregnancy-related hair loss typically occurs due to a shift in hormones. During pregnancy, elevated estrogen levels can cause the hair follicles to remain in the growth phase for longer than usual, resulting in thicker and fuller hair. It is why some women experience an increase in their hair volume during pregnancy. However, after childbirth, hormone levels return to normal, causing the extended growth phase of hair to come to a close. As a result, some women may suffer more from hair loss as the follicles enter their resting phase. Other factors that can contribute to postpartum hair loss include:
- Stress – Stressful events such as childbirth can cause sudden and severe changes in hormone levels, which cause the body to go into a shock-like state. It can trigger hair loss in some cases.
- Iron deficiency anemia – Iron deficiency anemia is a condition that affects many pregnant women and can be caused by a lack of iron in the diet.
- Genetics – Some women may be genetically predisposed to postpartum hair loss. In many cases, postpartum hair loss is temporary, and hair can regenerate.
How long do women suffer from hair loss after pregnancy?
It depends on the individual and can vary from person to person. Generally, postpartum hair loss is temporary and can last anywhere from a few months to a year. Sometimes, it may take longer for your hair to return to normal, or you may not experience any hair loss.
How to prevent hair loss after pregnancy?
Here are some tips to help prevent hair loss after pregnancy:
Eat a balanced diet
A nutritious, balanced diet is essential for healthy hair growth and overall health. Include protein-rich foods (like chicken, fish, eggs, beans, and nuts), iron-rich foods (such as spinach and kale), and omega-3 fatty acids (found in salmon, tuna, flaxseeds, and walnuts).
Specific vitamins and minerals, including biotin, vitamin C, and iron, are essential for healthy hair growth. Talk to your doctor about which supplements might be beneficial for you.
Minimize the use of heat styling tools
Blow dryers, flat irons, and curling irons can all lead to hair damage and breakage. Whenever possible, let your hair air-dry instead of using heat-styling tools.
Avoid harsh chemicals
Certain shampoos, conditioners, and styling products contain harsh chemicals that can strip away natural oils from your scalp and hair strands, leading to damage and breakage. Instead, pay attention to products with natural ingredients.
Massage your scalp
Massaging your scalp helps to stimulate circulation, which can promote healthy hair growth. Also, try using a few drops of lavender or coconut oil for extra nourishment and relaxation benefits.
Consult a doctor
If you’re still suffering from excessive hair loss after trying these tips, it’s essential to see the doctor for further evaluation. You may need to take medication or undergo other treatments to help restore healthy hair growth.