Everything You Need to Know About Postpartum Hair Loss
Postpartum hair loss, also known as postpartum alopecia, is a common condition that affects many women after giving birth. It is a temporary hair loss that typically occurs around three to six months after childbirth. Here's everything you need to know about postpartum hair loss:
Causes: During pregnancy, the increased levels of hormones, particularly estrogen, can prolong the growth phase of hair, resulting in thicker and fuller hair. However, after giving birth, hormone levels normalise, causing the hair to enter a resting phase. This shift in hormone levels can lead to excessive shedding and postpartum hair loss.
Timing: Postpartum hair loss usually begins around three months after childbirth but can start as early as one month or as late as six months. The shedding phase typically lasts for a few weeks to several months before the hair growth cycle returns to normal.
Severity: The degree of hair loss varies among women. Some may experience mild shedding, while others may notice clumps of hair falling out. It is important to note that postpartum hair loss is generally temporary and the hair eventually regrows.
Psychological impact: Postpartum hair loss can be distressing for new mothers who may already be dealing with various physical and emotional changes. The sudden hair loss can affect self-esteem and lead to feelings of sadness or anxiety. It is important to seek support from loved ones and healthcare professionals to cope with these emotions.
Normal hair growth cycle: Understanding the hair growth cycle can help alleviate concerns. Hair grows in a cyclical manner, with each hair follicle going through a growth phase (anagen), a transitional phase (catagen), and a resting phase (telogen). After the resting phase, the hair falls out, and new hair starts growing in its place. Postpartum hair loss is essentially the shedding of the hair that remained in the resting phase during pregnancy.
Managing postpartum hair loss
While it is not possible to prevent postpartum hair loss entirely, there are steps you can take to minimise its impact:
- Be gentle with your hair: Avoid using harsh styling techniques, such as tight ponytails or heat styling tools, as they can further weaken the hair.
- Use mild hair care products: Choose gentle shampoos and conditioners that do not contain sulfates or harsh chemicals. These products can help maintain a healthy scalp and hair.
- Maintain a balanced diet: Eating a nutritious diet rich in vitamins and minerals can support hair health. Include foods that are high in biotin, zinc, iron, and vitamin E.
- Consider supplements: Consult with your healthcare provider about taking supplements that support hair growth and overall postpartum recovery. Our naturopath suggest Folic acid and Vitamin C can be helpful.
- Practice stress management: Stress can exacerbate hair loss. Engage in activities that help reduce stress levels, such as exercise, meditation, or spending time with loved ones.
When to seek medical advice: While postpartum hair loss is typically a normal part of the postnatal period, it is important to consult a healthcare professional if you experience excessive or prolonged hair loss, or if you have concerns about your overall hair health. They can evaluate your condition and rule out any underlying medical causes.
Postpartum hair loss may be an unwelcome side effect of childbirth, but it's important to remember that it is temporary. Most women notice their hair returning to its pre-pregnancy state within six to twelve months after giving birth. By understanding the causes, timing, and management techniques, you can navigate this phase with confidence. Reach out for support, practice self-care, and remember that your beautiful
Jordana Edwards is founder of Clean Tea Australia and The Breastfeeding Tea Co. Created in 2013 in collaboration with her naturopath mother, Jordana first sold Clean Tea at the markets in Byron Bay before growing her “little tea stall” into a multimillion dollar ecommerce global business.As the recipient of an astounding 5 awards at the 2020 Ausmumprenuer Awards, this business powerhouse has also been listed as one of the 2020 Remodista International “Women to Watch” in business disruption, as well as being a nominee as a Facebook “Community Leader” for her work training, mentoring and supporting women in business in her local and rural area.