Hair loss can take anyone by surprise at any time. But one thing a lot of women may not realize is that postpartum hair loss is a real thing that’s actually quite common.
With everything you’re already dealing with after pregnancy, hair loss isn’t exactly a welcoming occurrence. But, it happens! If you’re a new mother and are experiencing hair loss, this could be why.
As part of my article series on the many causes of hair loss, I want to dedicate an article to postpartum hair loss. As a new mother myself, I want expecting mothers, new mothers, along with family and friends of mothers to be able to recognize and help with this type of hair loss.
In today’s article, I’ll cover why this happens, along with 4 tips to help get your hair back to its normal thickness and beauty!
Let’s start with answering the question…
This comes down to hormones. Throughout pregnancy, your hormones make some dramatic shifts.
Early on, a hormone called human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) spikes. So much so, that this is actually the hormone that pregnancy tests measure.
Then throughout pregnancy, the levels of many other hormones begin to rise. Your estrogen, progesterone, oxytocin, and prolactin all increase. Your blood volume also increases by up to 50%!
Then, following birth, the level of these hormones crash back to normal levels quite quickly.
When it comes to postpartum hair loss, these hormonal changes are the biggest reason.
Normally, you lose up to 100 strands of hair each day. These are replaced through normal growth cycles. But during pregnancy, the high estrogen levels mixed with an increase in blood volume (and circulation) helps keep these hairs from falling out.
So, while you’re pregnant, these changes greatly reduce natural hair loss.
But once your baby arrives and these hormone levels drop, your body makes up for lost time. This means much more hair falling out, typically all at once. So, really – it’s not like you’re losing more hair than you would have over that nine month span. You’re just doing it all at once!
Though your hormones level out within a day or two, this hair loss can continue for nearly a year, typically peaking at about the four month mark.
If you think your hair loss is way too much, or it’s been over a year and the hair loss hasn’t tapered off, there could be something else going on.
In this article series, I cover other reasons your hair may fall out. Pregnancy can certainly play into these other reasons. For example, the stress of being a new parent may be getting to you, or perhaps you’re not eating as well as you used to because you’ve been focused on the baby.
If this is you – or if it hasn’t been a year yet and you just want to get ahead of the hair loss – keep reading! I’ll share 4 things you can do to optimize hair health!
Unfortunately, when it comes to postpartum hair loss, there isn’t much in the way of treatments. It’s simply a natural process of being a new mother. But if you want to help your hair get back to its natural state as soon as possible, here are a few things I recommend…
Your hair can become damaged if it’s heated with a hair dryer or curling iron too frequently. This can also make it appear thinner than it is. To protect your hair, let it air dry until you think the hair loss is decreasing.
Along with that, even just brushing can pull out your hair in large clumps. If you’re already losing a lot of hair, you want to keep the hair you already have! Try to limit brushing and be as gentle as possible when you do brush.
Unsurprisingly, eating a balanced diet of whole foods can help support the health of your hair. Plenty of fruits, vegetables, and healthy proteins are the best way to ensure your body gets a wide range of nutrients.
To ensure you’re getting the vitamins you need – especially ones you may be worried you’re not getting enough of – taking your supplements is best. I know you’re busy with your new bundle of joy, but it’s important to not let this fall behind!
Not only can it impact your hair’s health, but once you’re lacking in these crucial nutrients, you may start to feel worn down and tired.
Some of the most important nutrients for hair growth include iron, zinc, biotin, and vitamin D.
When it comes to vitamin D, it’s especially hard to get enough.
Many products on the market contain ingredients that can cause irritation to your scalp and hair. Re-evaluate the products you’re using by taking a look at their ingredient lists. If your hair is already having trouble, you want to go as easy on it as possible.
You can also try new products that can help your hair look thicker while it’s growing back. Consider a volumizer that can add body to your hair so that you can maintain a lustrous look!
While the process of hair loss following childbirth is completely natural, it’s nothing to be excited about. There are ways to mitigate the amount of hair lost and things you can do to help your hair get back to normal.
I hope today’s blog helped you – or someone you know – feel a bit better about a bit of hair loss after having their baby.
The health and strength of your new hair can be boosted by supporting your collagen levels. Of course, forming a baby inside your stomach is no simple task, and your collagen levels certainly took a hit.
Replenishing your collagen levels can boost the growth of your hair, allowing it to be healthier while providing a range of other health benefits.