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Postpartum hair loss or hair loss after delivery is a distressing condition that new moms must deal with after pregnancy. The first few months after delivery, you hear most moms complain about excessive hair loss. But moms-to-be can take heart in the knowledge that postpartum hair loss is a normal occurrence and there are some effective ways to deal with it.
What is Postpartum Hair Loss?
Postpartum hair loss is a temporary phenomenon. It lasts only for the first few months after pregnancy, and with a little care and looking after, your hair comes 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 and there is no need to worry at all. About 85 percent of our hair grows actively while 15 percent of our remaining hair is in the resting mode. This 15 percent of hair usually falls out while combing or during hair wash during a certain period called the shedding period, making way for new hair to grow.
During pregnancy, due to the high oestrogen levels, the growing stage of the hair is prolonged. There are very few hairs in the resting mode and the overall hair fall is less. As a result, during pregnancy, women have thicker and stronger hair.
Things change post-delivery. The oestrogen level in the body falls, and suddenly a lot of follicles go into the rest mode and start falling abruptly. The sudden change in other hormones too may cause this, 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 in the life of a new mother is not permanent.
It is also important to mention 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 obvious to women with longer hair. You must consult your physician if you think that your hair fall is increasing by the day.
Sign 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 pregnancy, you may observe clumps in your hairbrush or clogging of the drain with hair after birth. 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 his/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 the oestrogen levels. This causes more hair to go into resting mode and start falling 4 months after the 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 turn out to be due to anaemia or postpartum thyroiditis. Both the conditions can be treated, and a doctor must be consulted for the same.
Hair loss after delivery is a natural process and mostly 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 help you understand how to control hair fall after delivery.
- A prenatal vitamin supplement can really help in controlling the loss of hair post-pregnancy. Consult your physician before taking prenatal vitamins.
- Eating healthy and right is very important after pregnancy. It helps keep your hair healthy too.
- Be extra gentle to your hair while washing or combing. Use voluminous shampoo for your hair and wash your hair only when necessary. Also, use combs with widely spaced teeth.
- Avoid using heat directly on your hair. It may cause irreversible damage. It is best to skip blow dryers as well as hot irons.
- Avoid tight hairstyles that will 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 remedy to prevent as well as minimize hair fall:
- Eat diet rich in iron, zinc, and vitamins.
- Home remedies for hairfall after delivery include using a homemade hair pack of egg white and olive oil directly on the scalp.
- Soak fenugreek seeds overnight and apply the strained water directly on the scalp and leave it for an hour or two.
- Include yogurt in your diet and use it as a hair mask too.
- Massage your hair gently with lukewarm oil before 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 prevent hair loss.
- Include dry fruits and flax seeds in your diet. They are rich in omega-3 and fats and help in strengthening of hair.
The above-listed treatments and home remedies will allow you to enjoy the arrival of your little one rather than brooding over post pregnancy hair fall.