Hair Growth While Pregnant: Common Reasons & Solutions

Hair Growth During Pregnancy

Medically Reviewed By
Dr. Priyanka Kalra (Gynecologist/Obstetrician)
View more Gynecologist/Obstetrician Our Panel of Experts

With hormone levels changing and spiking during pregnancy, you will notice a number of changes occurring in your body. One change that is quite common is a change in hair growth. Some women will experience an increase in hair growth all over their body.

Is It Common for Your Hair to Grow Thicker When Pregnant?

When you become pregnant, you will notice that your hair changes considerably. Some women find that the texture of their hair has changed entirely. Others believe that their hair is now fuller or thicker. However, while you aren’t growing new hair, your existing hair is not becoming thicker either. Instead, due to the excessive amounts of oestrogen being produced in your body, the growth stage of your hair is now longer.

Women who are not pregnant experience a normal hair fall of around 100 strands per day. Around 5 to 15% of your hair is in a resting phase, while the rest is in a growth phase. After the resting phase, these hairs will fall when you either brush or shampoo your hair. With an increase in oestrogen, the growth phase is longer which means that lesser hair is falling out, giving you the impression of fuller and thicker hair. Many women will find that their hair has more shine during their pregnancy.

Is It Normal to Have More Body or Facial Hair in Pregnancy?

You might also notice an increase in facial or body hair growth in pregnancy and this can be attributed to the increase in the hormone known as androgen. You must keep in mind that none of the changes that occur during pregnancy will be permanent. Once your pregnancy is over, the body will regulate itself back to its previous state of hormone levels, and this will stop the growth of facial or body hair. If the hair growth bothers you, then you can safely wax or tweeze the hair.

Are These Excessively Grown Facial and Body Hair Permanent?

You can rest assured that the change in your hair growth patterns will not be permanent. Once your pregnancy is over, the hormones will settle back into their previous patterns. You will notice a reversal in the hair growth back to pre-pregnancy levels between 3 to 6 months after the pregnancy.

Causes of Hair Growth in Pregnancy

As discussed, the increase in the hormone androgen results in the excessive growth of hair on the face and body. Here are a few more causes of an increase in pregnancy hair growth.

  • Most pregnant women will be prescribed vitamins in order to ensure that they are getting the best nutrition. This is done so that the foetus develops healthily. However, with the increase in vitamin intake, there is also an increase in hair growth.
  • During pregnancy, you will be eating larger meals in an attempt to help your body regulate nutrition not just for itself but for the foetus too. This increase in nutrition adds to the overall health of your hair.
  • An increase in oestrogen increases the duration of the growth phase of the hair and, thus, the hair will not fall out as often.
  • An increase in the level of the hormone progesterone results in the activation of latent hair follicles.

Causes of Hair Growth in Pregnancy

Avoid These Things When You Have More Hair

There are a few things you must try to avoid when you are pregnant. The same applies to the way you treat the excessive hair you now find. One of the most important things to avoid is bleaching your hair. Since a lot of harsh chemicals are used in the process of bleaching hair, these chemicals can seep into the skin and travel to the foetus. While there hasn’t been enough research to show the harmful effects of bleach on the foetus, it is best that you avoid exposing the developing baby to chemical products. If you are still having doubts, then please consult with your doctor and only visit reputed beauty salons.

You should also avoid getting any laser treatments to remove the excess hair. Most places that offer these services will not carry out the procedure on pregnant women. Also, due to the varying levels of hormones in your body, you may find that the laser treatment does not work.

Getting Rid Of Excess Hair In Pregnancy

So, how do you get rid of the unwanted hair growth during pregnancy? Here are a few methods that you can try that will be safe for you and your baby.

  • Waxing is a method that you can use to remove extra hair growth in pregnant women for a relatively long period of time. It is best that you let professionals do the waxing for you as your skin will be more sensitive during pregnancy. The professionals have a lot of experience under their belt and will know how to wax with the least amount of pain. Also, as your belly grows during the pregnancy, you will find that you will have lesser dexterity. However, avoid the waxing your tummy in the first trimester.
  • Tweezing is a great way to remove stray facial hair growth in pregnancy, say from your chin or even your eyebrows. Since this method uses no chemicals and is isolated to a few stray hairs, it is entirely safe for you and your baby. You can also opt for threading, especially for your upper lip.
  • Shaving is ideal for when you want to get rid of hair over a larger area. Be sure that you use a new blade, as this will decrease the chances of getting any cuts. As your pregnancy progresses, you can enlist the help of a partner to shave some of those harder to reach areas. There are a wide variety of instruments you can use for shaving, from disposable razors to electric shavers.

Getting Rid Of Excess Hair In Pregnancy

Taking Care of Your Hair

There are many things you can do to ensure that your hair is strong and supple during your pregnancy. It is best that you start developing these habits during your pregnancy and continue them later on as well.

  • Make sure that your diet has plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables. These are rich in nutrients and will keep up the integrity of the hair shaft.
  • One of the main reasons women lose hair is because they comb their hair straight out of the shower. Your hair is at its weakest when it is wet, and, if you must comb it, then do so with a wide-toothed comb.
  • Overheating your hair can also contribute to hair damage. It is best to avoid devices that use too much heat in order to maintain your hair. So, appliances like a hair straightener or curler are best avoided. If you want to blow dry your hair, then do so with it on the cool setting.
  • Do not tie up your hair too tightly as it can cause stress to your hair and its roots. Use hair accessories that clip your hair loose.

Pregnancy causes many changes in your body including a change in hair growth. Rest assured that this is a completely normal phenomenon, and things will go back to normal after the pregnancy. If you still have concerns, then do not be afraid to bring them to the notice of your doctor.

Also Read:

Effective Tips for Hair Care during Pregnancy
How to Remove Hair from Private Parts During Pregnancy
Hair on Stomach during Pregnancy
Using Hair Removal Cream While Pregnant

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