Hair Fall After Delivery: Causes And Treatment
- Anoush Gomes
- 4 Min Read
- Fact Checked
During pregnancy and after delivery, mother’s go through many hormonal changes. This causes many unwelcome conditions such as postpartum depression and postpartum hair loss or hair fall after delivery. In fact most women rave about how amazing their hair is during pregnancy, but have realised that their hair falls after delivery. While it’s not true for all mothers, hair fall after delivery is normal and is not true hair loss. Postpartum hair loss/fall has it’s set of causes, and fortunately is temporary and can be managed.
Causes of hair fall after delivery
Before you give you the rundown behind the causes of hair fall after delivery, it’s important to understand how hormones and other functions of the body work during pregnancy and after delivery.
Pregnancy causes the following hormones to rise:
– hCG (The hormones that is tested for and confirms pregnancy
After birth, some hormone levels drop drastically such as estrogen and progesterone – they normalize within a day. While pregnant, the high estrogen and progesterone levels present wonders that contribute to the “pregnancy flow.” On a normal day, you will be shedding about 50-100 hairs a day. Pregnancy increase in estrogen helps hair stay in it’s growth phase much longer. Estrogen has an effect on skin and hair and therefore it’s drop after delivery causes hair fall to increase.
Besides estrogen, other hormones fall back to normal levels within a few days. Not to mention, cortisol levels after birth are also high, and some women also experience concerns with their thyroid hormones. Hair, affected by hormones and the stress of raising a newborn, fluctuates between its growth and resting phase causing hair fall.
Breastfeeding mothers, also complain of the same issue and hair fall during lactation is also real. This of course falls under the same bucket of postpartum hair fall. But, the good news is, there are ways to help it AND it’s not permanent. Hair growth cycle should normalize within 9 to 12 months after childbirth.
Watch the video below by dermatologist Dr. Raina Nahar to understand the causes of postpartum hair loss and tips on how to help it.
Prevention and Treatment for hair fall after delivery
It may seem at times that hair is as tricky as hormones can be. But, while hormones normalize over a certain amount of time, there are ways you can help hair gain back it’s moisture, and volume. There are also ways that you can prevent hair fall post delivery.
(1) Make your hair a priority: There are simple ways to avoid damaging your hair. Taking care of your care can keep premature hair fall at bay.
– Reduce heat usage
– Avoid excessive brushing and brushing wet hair
– Follow a hair care routine
– Have routine scalp massages
– Use the right shampoo and conditioner for your hair time
– Be gentle when drying your hair: do not pull, rub or tug
– Avoid tight hair do’s
– Use a silk pillowcase to avoid hair pulling
(2) Eat healthy: Nutrient imbalance which affects the main organs such as the brain, lungs, heart and liver, it can also affect your hair. This is because when the body is low on energy (caused by unhealthy eating, or otherwise), it shuttles all it’s valuable nutrients to the vital organs and away from smaller functions such as hair growth.
– Healthy diet of proteins, iron and vitamin C: meat, fish, nuts, lentils, oranges
– Omega-3-fatty acids for healthy hair growth: salmon, avocado, pumpkin seeds
– Adequate Zinc and/or Selenium: grains, beef, oysters
(3) Tone down the stress levels: While cortisol is high after delivery, there are ways to keep stress levels at a manageable level. Cortisol can very well have an effect on your hair but most importantly, if you take care of yourself you’ll be able to take care of your child better.
-Take time out for yourself
– Keep in contact with family and friends
– Stay active
– Try light yoga and meditation at least once a day
(4) Add vitamins to your diet: While healthy eating is the best way to fortify your body, whether you are breastfeeding or not, it’s important to make sure that all your vitamins are up to par. Breastfeeding can push a new mother into a deficiency phase as the body’s vitamins and other nutrients are diverted to the baby. Speak to a general practitioner or a gynaecologist to make sure that you are taking all the necessary vitamins your body needs. Low vitamin D or Vitamin B12 levels can affect your hair growth drastically.