No need to fear!! Post partum hair loss, formally known as telogen effluvium, is quite common.
Your hair is likely to achieve luscious growth while you are pregnant. This is due to the fact that an increased proportion of hairs are in the anagen or growth phase due to hormonal elevations. In the post partum period hormonal fluctuations can drastically impact the hair. At this point, more hairs are in the resting or telogen phase.
Changes are usually seen 1-4 months after delivery. If it occurs, a lot of women will note diffuse shedding. For many, this will be most visible around the edges. In some, the hair loss is quite dramatic and can be emotionally devastating.
Fortunately, while there isn’t much that can be done to prevent telogen effluvium, it is a self limiting condition. Eating a well balanced diet, staying properly hydrated and continuing your prenatal vitamin are all beneficial to maintaining a healthy body post partum.
Your hair won’t grow back overnight but it WILL grow back! Most women will see regrowth of their hair within a few months after onset. It is important to maintain the health of your remaining hair with routine washing and conditioning. Massage may provide some benefit by helping to increase blood flow to the scalp. Lastly, consider protective styling, as this may prevent damage to your remaining hair. If necessary, grab a scarf, hat or headwrap and make it work!!
If you had problems with hair loss or alopecia prior to pregnancy, an underlying medical condition may be present. Additionally, if you find that your hair fails to grow back, consult with your doctor so that other causes can be ruled out. Otherwise, be patient with the process. After all, you just grew a human being inside of you and birthed a beautiful life into the world! Be kind to yourself, it’s only hair!!
As always don’t forget to #AskDrKing