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Postpartum hair loss, or hair loss after delivery, is a distressing condition that new moms usually deal with after pregnancy. Excessive hair loss is one of the biggest complaints amongst mothers post-delivery, but moms-to-be can take heart in the fact that postpartum hair loss is a normal occurrence and there are some effective ways to deal with it.
Video: Hair Fall After Delivery – Reasons & Remedies
What Is Postpartum Hair Loss?
Postpartum hair loss is a temporary phenomenon. It lasts only for the first few months after pregnancy, so with a little care, your hair will come back to normal by the time your little one turns a year old. So, there is no need to panic. Just relax and enjoy your time with your little one.
Is It Normal to Lose Hair After Pregnancy?
Losing hair after pregnancy is quite normal, so there is no need to worry. About 85% of our hair grows actively while 15% of it is in resting mode – this 15% usually falls out during hair wash or combing during a period called the shedding period, and it makes way for new hair follicles.
The high levels of oestrogen during pregnancy prolong the growing stage of hair. This hormone increases the flow and circulation of blood, thus strengthening the roots. There are very few hairs in resting mode and the overall hair fall is low. As a result of this, women have thicker and stronger hair during pregnancy.
However, things change post-delivery. The oestrogen levels in the body fall and the hair follicles go into rest mode and start falling abruptly. A sudden change in hormones, thus, causes hair fall post-delivery, but it is not permanent. After pregnancy, mothers go through a shedding period which usually lasts only for 6 to 8 months. Hence, this drastic change is only temporary.
It is also important to note that the amount of hair fall post-pregnancy will differ from one mother to another. For instance, this sudden increase in hair fall may become more prominent in women with longer hair. You must consult your physician if you think that your hair fall is increasing by the day.
Signs of Hair Loss After Baby
Women, in general, lose close to 100 strands of hair every day even when they are not pregnant. However, about 4 to 6 months after delivery, you may observe clumps in your hairbrush or clogging in your drain. This is the first and only sign of postpartum hair loss, and the same gradually reduces as your baby gets ready to blow the candle for her first birthday.
In case the hair fall persists, consult your physician for treatment.
What causes hair loss after pregnancy is no more a mystery. The most common reason for hair fall post-pregnancy is the fall in oestrogen levels. This causes more hair to go into resting mode and fall 4 months after delivery. This phase lasts for 6 to 8 months in new moms and is completely normal. But if the hair fall continues to persist, it may be due to anaemia or postpartum thyroiditis – pregnancy can change the levels of ferritin in the body and change your thyroid levels. Both the conditions can be treated, and a doctor must be consulted for the same.
Hair loss after delivery is a natural process caused due to hormonal changes that cannot be avoided. Therefore, there is no hair fall treatment after delivery that can stop this hair loss. Having said that, here are a few tips that can help control hair fall after delivery.
- Prenatal vitamin supplements can really help in controlling the loss of hair post-pregnancy. Consult your physician before taking prenatal vitamins.
- Eating healthy is very important after pregnancy, and that will keep your hair healthy too.
- Be extra gentle with your hair while washing or combing. Use a shampoo that increases volume in your hair and wash your hair only when necessary. Also, use combs with widely spaced teeth.
- Avoid using heat directly on your hair as it may cause irreversible damage. It is best to skip blow dryers and hot irons.
- Avoid tight hairstyles that pull your hair and cause them to break from the root.
- Avoid stress. Stay calm and enjoy your time with your little one.
- Try donning a shorter hairstyle with increased volume.
Here is a list of tried and tested postpartum hair loss remedies to minimise hair fall:
- Consume foods rich in iron, zinc, and vitamins.
- A homemade hair pack made of egg whites and olive oil applied directly on the scalp is a good remedy to minimise hair fall post-delivery.
- Soak fenugreek seeds overnight and apply the strained water directly on the scalp. Leave it for an hour or two and wash.
- Include yoghurt in your diet and use it as a hair mask as well – mix it with some coconut oil and apply.
- Massage your hair gently with lukewarm oil before your hair wash to improve circulation and increase hair growth.
- Drink amla juice or apply pure amla oil to strengthen hair.
- Application of coconut milk directly on the scalp also helps reduce hair loss.
- Include dry fruits and flaxseeds in your diet. They are rich in omega-3 and help in strengthening the hair.
The above-listed treatments and home remedies will allow you to enjoy the arrival of your little one instead of brooding over post-pregnancy hair fall.