Hair loss after childbirth: 6 tips to reduce hair loss after pregnancy

While welcoming your bundle of joy home is a feeling that nothing can beat, new mothers often experience extreme hair loss. This is common some time after giving birth. Postpartum hair loss can occur any time three months after delivery and can last up to six months. While this is unavoidable, there are ways to control hair loss after childbirth.

What causes hair loss after childbirth?

Postpartum hormones can affect your hair due to the sudden drop in estrogen and progesterone levels, disrupting the hair growth cycle. “This shift from the anagen (hair growth phase) to the telogen (hair loss phase) phase results in postpartum hair loss. Additionally, reduced blood circulation and potential nutrient deficiencies can worsen this condition,” says dermatologist Dr. Priyanka Kuri.

Is hair loss after childbirth normal?

After childbirth, there is a rapid decrease in certain hormones in the body, causing the hair growth phase (anagen phase) to transition to the hair loss phase (telogen phase), resulting in hair loss. Additionally, the physical stress experienced during childbirth, such as the childbirth process, can further contribute to postpartum hair loss. Reduced blood circulation and poor dietary habits can increase the effects of hair loss during this period.

However, it can happen to almost any new mother. “Postpartum hair loss is considered normal for the first three to four months after delivery and continues for six months. However, if the excessive secretion continues for more than six months, it may indicate a more serious condition, such as chronic telogen effluvium. Several factors, including inadequate nutrition, lack of sleep and increased stress levels, can contribute to the severity of postpartum hair loss, explains Dr. Kuri.

Iron supplements are a must in any hair loss treatment plan. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

Can you prevent hair loss after childbirth?

There are many simple and practical ways to minimize hair loss after childbirth. These ways are also beneficial for the overall health of the new mother and will only bring good results.

1. Healthy food

After the birth of a baby, the emphasis should be on maintaining a nutritious diet. This diet should consist of green and colorful vegetables, fruits, nuts and dried fruits. The new mother should eat a balanced diet.

2. Limit sugar intake

Excessive sugar affects blood circulation. And once this happens, the blood can no longer reach your hair follicles effectively. This prevents nutrients from reaching your hair and therefore hinders healthy hair growth.

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3. Iron supplements

It is very important that new mothers continue to take iron supplements for at least six months. Excessive bleeding after childbirth and breastfeeding can often take a toll on your iron stores.

4. Check sugar and thyroid levels

Regularly checking sugar and thyroid levels can also help prevent excessive hair loss.

5. Avoid styling

Try to skip styling unless it is absolutely necessary as it will definitely affect hair growth. In addition, during this period, avoid the use of heat tools and salon procedures

6. Seek professional help

Consult a dermatologist for suitable hair serums and supplements.

How long does hair loss last after giving birth?

Losing a significant amount of hair every day can be traumatic for any woman. You might wonder how long it would take. Another relevant question that comes to my mind is: As my hair grows back to the volume I had during pregnancy or before? The good news is that this will soon end and the hair will grow back to its original volume over the course of a year or two.

“Postpartum hair loss typically lasts about three to six months after delivery, and it can take up to two years to fully regain lost hair volume. If it lasts longer than six months, it is considered chronic,” says Dr. Kuri.

But it is very important to remember that prioritizing a healthy lifestyle is essential. Make sure you eat a nutrient-dense diet as this will go a long way. Good self-care practices are often very important to facilitate the recovery of hair volume over time, and this should be taken care of. It is also essential to be mentally and physically prepared for the challenges associated with pregnancy and postpartum recovery.

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