Postpartum Hair Loss: How Childbirth Can Cause Hair Loss
Author: Burton Ransford
Edited by: Embassy Studio & Med Spa
Everything changes after you have a baby. To support health and well-being, The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) stresses the importance of attending appointments with your Doctor during recovery. However, many women are not prepared for one reality of the fourth trimester: postpartum hair loss or telogen effluvium (temporary hair loss).
Thinning of the hair typically occurs three to six months after you give birth, says board-certified physician Dr. Alan J. Bauman. While the condition affects 40 to 50 percent of women, per Dr. Bauman, there are many myths surrounding the realities of postpartum hair loss.
Why Postpartum Hair Loss Is Surprisingly Common
Many pregnant women experience positive hair changes during pregnancy, including thicker hair and shinier, healthier-looking locks. Yale professor, Dr. Mary Jane Minkin, attributes this to higher estrogen production, which likely stimulates hair follicles and growth.
Postpartum hair loss may occur for several reasons, but you can likely blame most of the root cause of hormonal changes post-birth. While other physical changes or life events can contribute to the rate of hair loss after giving birth, Minkin and Dr. Elizabeth C.W. Hughes both agree that postpartum hair loss is probably not caused by breastfeeding or stopping your prenatal vitamins.
Is My Postpartum Hair Loss Normal?
Let’s face it, it’s horrifying to watch your healthy hair literally going down the drain in the shower, or experience excessive shedding when you pull your hair back in a bun or ponytail.
Hair loss may be visible, especially if you experienced significant hair changes while pregnant, you have naturally fine hair or your hair is long. These changes may persist for approximately six months after starting since the human hair growth cycle has a “resting phase” of three months on average.
Chances are, your hair loss is normal — just 3 to 5 percent of women experience abnormal or persistent hair loss postpartum. That means 35 to 47 percent of new moms can expect their hair to be back to a healthy, pre-pregnancy state by their baby’s first birthday.
Taking Charge of Your Postpartum Hair Loss
If you’re worried about postpartum hair loss, have a conversation with your physician and a qualified hair loss specialist. There are many options for managing your short-term hair loss and restoring confidence.
Your options for postpartum hair loss survival include custom hair extensions and custom wigs tailored to your hair texture and color. You may also qualify for non-surgical treatments. While postpartum hair loss is generally temporary and normal, every new mother deserves to feel beautiful. To schedule, a free consultation at Embassy Studios call (847) 675-0330.