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If you’re a new mother and it has been an overwhelming journey so far, fret not! This new journey has got its ups and a few ugly downs like postpartum hair loss. Women tend to spend so much time regaining their physical strength and toning up their bodies after all the wear and tear they have gone through, that they often neglect their hair that needs some additional TLC. Postpartum hair fall needs your attention.
If you’ve been losing too much hair while brushing or washing them since you had a baby, you’re at the right place. Don’t panic, because postpartum hair loss is normal. This problem is relatively common and is known to affect almost 40 to 50 percent of new mothers. To treat an issue at hand, you must know what caused it in the first place.
1. During pregnancy, most women find that their hair growth has increased significantly and hair health, thickness and shine has improved. This happens due to the surge in estrogen production by our bodies which pushes our hair into its growth phase.
2. After childbirth, the mother’s spiked estrogen level drops down causing the hair to enter the resting phase which slows down the hair growth. After remaining in the resting phase for about 100 days, hair begins to shed.
3. This phenomena of hair fall can be triggered further by nutrient deficiency, stress levels, hormonal imbalances and thyroid inflammation.
The hair shedding period starts 2 to 4 months after childbirth. The amount of hair fall is relatively different in each woman. Though women who have experienced good hair growth during pregnancy may seem to shed more hair than other women.
Dr Vidushi Jain, Medical Head, Dermalink, spoke to HealthShots emphasising that postpartum hair fall is a temporary process which may subside within a few months.
“Most of the new moms experience excessive hair fall or hair shedding, medically known as telogen effluvium. This is not hair loss but hair shedding which may last up to the child’s first birthday or within one year of childbirth. This happens due to the decline in estrogen levels during pregnancy,” Jain says.
“A female’s hair is at its best during pregnancy and when the estrogen levels fall after the pregnancy, it leads to excessive hair shedding. This is only a change in the cycle and not something that is affecting the root of your hair which the new mothers should not be worried about,” the expert added.
On the measures to take for regaining hair health, Dr Jain says “New mothers need to ensure proper nutrition during their breastfeeding period. Deficiencies of nutrients and minerals should be monitored. Hormonal imbalances in your body should be tested for and corrected to prevent hair fall.”
They say you look your best when you’re feeling your best from within. Diet plays an important role in your optimal health and overall well being. Consuming a diet rich in vitamins and minerals is the first step you should take towards your hair health. Make sure your diet includes a balance of seasonal fruits, vegetables and whole grains.
Other than being a mood killer, stress can cause premature ageing of skin and hair. A newborn baby comes with a package of happiness and a whole new set of responsibilities for a mother. You must accept and embrace the new life with open arms. Try relaxing techniques like yoga, mindfulness and meditation. If not that, you can dabble in your hobbies. Be open to asking for help from friends and family in case you’re feeling overwhelmed with the new changes life has brought in.
Women experiencing hair fall swear by this magical herb called Bhringraj for hair fall. Regularly oiling your hair with bhringraj may give your hair the topical nutrition it may need to reverse hair fall.
If you’ve been dealing with clumps of hair on your brush, ask your doctor to suggest some nutritional supplements like B complex, iron and zinc. Taking these vitamin and mineral supplements may boost hair regrowth and curb the postpartum impact on your hair.
Let your hair regain its strength and keep that curling iron away! Try to hold off fancy blowouts at a salon and let your hair air-dry till the hair loss subsides. Do not over brush your hair as pulling on them during brushing may further weaken your tresses.
Moreover, it is necessary to be kind to yourself after bringing a new life into the world. Sometimes, it is better to let yourself be until you feel like yourself again. Taking out time for yourself may seem like a distant dream after childbirth. But, going for frequent trims, and relaxing hair spa every once in a while may not hurt!