Hair on Stomach during Pregnancy – Is It a Concern

A pregnant woman holding her belly

The fresh pregnancy glow on your face and thick lustrous hair make every pregnant woman attractive. Along with this, you may notice some extra hair in places where you don’t wish to have any. Excessive hair growth or Hirutism is a common condition among women during pregnancy. Hair grows in the stomach area or in the other unwanted areas of the body like the face or around the nipples. However, the good news is, this extra fuzz is not for keeps. It disappears about 6 months after your delivery.

Is a Hairy Belly during Pregnancy Normal?

A fuzzy belly creates a lot of worry among pregnant women. Most women hate it. Although hair anywhere on the body other than the head and eyebrows is very annoying, a hairy stomach during pregnancy is absolutely normal. All you need to do is deal with it till it lasts with patience.

What Causes Hair Growth on the Stomach during Pregnancy?

A pregnant woman holding her belly

During pregnancy the body produces an excess level of androgen. This causes excessive hair growth not just in the common areas but also in unwanted areas. Another reason is the hair getting darker than before due to the work of melanin, a pigment in our body.

Why do some Pregnant Women have Belly Hair while some Don’t?

Although all women during pregnancy produce both male and female hormones, not all experience excessive hair growth especially in the unwanted areas. Some women on the other hand experience hyperpigmentation, acne, and swelling. Extremely sensitive skin is also one of the reasons for hair growth in the belly. When extremely sensitive skin reacts to the rise in male hormones during pregnancy, it causes Hirsutism or extreme hair growth in the body.

What does Belly Hair in Pregnancy Mean?

A pregnant woman having a hairy stomach is quite common and normal. It is due to the hormones that also make your nails grow. It can basically mean that your hormones are overworking to help your baby grow well in your womb.

Will the Hair go away after Child Birth?

Pregnancy brings with it a lot of side effects. One such effect is Hirsutism or excessive hair growth during pregnancy due to the overworking of the hormones. However, there are no reasons to worry. Belly hair which grows during pregnancy disappears on its own when the hormones return to normal after the delivery. If in case you find your pregnancy induced belly hair not disappearing even after delivery, you can consult a dermatologist for some treatment option which is available.

Can you Remove Belly Hair?

There are a number of safe ways to remove belly hair. Tweezing (in case of little hair), waxing, scissors (to trim unwanted hair), shaving with a razor or an epilator can help pregnant women in getting rid unwanted belly hair removed. However, using hair removal creams, bleaching and laser hair removal should be avoided by women during pregnancy.

Warning Signs to Watch out for

Hair on the belly is not abnormal or out of this world. It is a natural condition that occurs during pregnancy in some women due to the hormonal changes. However, growing hair on the belly during pregnancy could be scary at times.

  • Excess belly fuzz during pregnancy could indicate Hyperandrogenism, a rare condition. It occurs when the male sex hormone androgens are produced in an excess. It also happens when the pregnant woman suffers from Polycystic Ovary Syndrome or in case she has been on medication to treat epilepsy.
  • This condition can also trigger high blood pressure, acne, decreased or absent menstrual periods, manly voice, excessive weight gain, baldness and increase muscle mass.
  • Hyperandrogenism, though rare, can be quite worrisome. If the mother has an excess of androgens in her blood, it can affect her unborn baby as well. If a woman (suffering from this condition) gives birth to a baby girl, the baby may run the risk of having male-like characteristics (virilization).
  • A growth in the abdomen or pelvis.
  • Belly hair usually disappears in a period of 6 months to 9 months after delivery. However, if it persists or the hair seems to spread and grow thicker, you should consult a doctor. Such a condition could indicate Cushing syndrome (occurring due to high levels of cortisol hormone), acromegaly (caused due to overproduction of growth hormone by an adenoma, a benign tumour of the pituitary gland) or a tumour near the ovaries or the adrenal gland.
  • The sudden growth of excess hair could also indicate cancer in some cases.

Treatment for unwanted belly hair during pregnancy is fairly limited. Although it may feel gross, avoid any type of depilatory creams until you have delivered. Stick to the other safe options like tweezing, waxing or shaving. The increased blood flow may make your skin sensitive during pregnancy so try and avoid more aggressive methods of hair removal like chemicals, bleaches, and laser. They may affect your foetus too. Therefore the best way is to just go with the flow of pregnancy even if it seems unpleasant.

Also Read: Using Hair Removal Cream during Pregnancy