Coping with Postpartum Hair Loss
It has been about 6 months since I had my daughter, and for the past month or two, my hair has been falling out like crazy. It doesn’t help that my little girl loves to pull on my hair either. Everywhere I look; there are strands of my hair. And, it seems like we have to unclog our bathtub drain almost weekly. Oh how I miss my thicker hair that I had during my pregnancy!
Hormonal changes are believed to contribute to postpartum hair shedding. During pregnancy, when estrogen is high, hair tends to remain in the growing phase, but post delivery, hair shifts into the resting phase, allowing more hair to fall out at once. Fortunately, this hair loss is only temporary and should resume its normal cycle once hormones get rebalanced in a few months.
What can one do? Well, there is not a whole lot that can be done, but it is of course very important to continue taking a pretnatal vitamin and eating a healthy diet (rich in protein and fruits and vegetables) to address any possible nutrient deficiencies. Additional supplementation of biotin, zinc, vitamin C, and omega 3s (fish oil) can be helpful. It is also best to be gentle with your hair and avoid blow drying, using flat irons, and getting any chemical treatments done. I recommend using natural shampoos and conditioners that contain silica and biotin to help strengthen your hair. Perhaps consider it a great time for a new shorter hair style too. Also, request a scalp massage to help stimulate blood flow to the scalp. This can also be a wonderful way to relax and distress. If however, you think that you are experiencing excessive hair loss, then you should talk to your doctor and get evaluated for hypothyroidism.
Article written by Margo Gladding, MS, CNS, LDN for Ellicott City Pharmacy.