The recovery period after birth lasts much longer than we think and is accompanied by phenomena that alarm the woman. One of these phenomena is postnatal hair loss. 3-4 months after the birth of the child, the mother begins to notice that after showering, sleeping, or combing she loses a large amount of hair. Some mothers even notice the small bald spots on the head. Unfortunately, this process is completely natural and lasts for several months. It is important for a young mother to know why postpartum hair loss occurs and what she should do.
What causes postpartum hair loss?
The main reason for the postpartum hair loss is natural processes happening in the body. But the way of life of a young mother also has an influence on the matter.
The main reason is a change in the hormonal background. During pregnancy, the secretion of female sex hormones (estrogens) increases. Under the influence of these hormones, the body is rejuvenated, the rate of cell renewal is very fast. The natural process of hair loss during this period is minimal: the hairs which have already stopped actively growing don’t fall out. At the same time, this doesn’t prevent new hairs from growing. The increased volume of circulating blood also plays its positive role in the growth of hair during pregnancy.
After delivery, the hormonal background drastically changes. The amount of estrogen decreases, and its amazing effect disappears. The hairs, falling out during this period, should have fallen out long ago but the physiological reasons caused the delay. Of course, a sudden change is quite frightening for a young mother. Don’t worry, everything is perfectly natural!
Additional reasons for postpartum hair loss
- The stress factor. The birth of a child is a great stress for a woman. Adaptation to a new social role, new worries, lack of sleep are exhausting, even on the background of joy from motherhood. Due to the stress, skin condition may deteriorate, immunity – diminish, and hair loss – increase.
- The lack of vitamins and trace elements. During pregnancy, all the nutritious substances are “sent” to the child, and the mother gets only the residue. During the period of breastfeeding, the same thing happens but the needs of the newborn are even higher, so the mother gets even less.
How to stop postpartum hair loss?
First of all, we regret to say that it is impossible to completely stop postpartum hair loss. However, it doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t take any action. The best treatment in this situation is to enhance hair care and to take vitamins in order to strengthen your entire body.
- At the physical level, it is very important to treat your hair very carefully: don’t comb wet hair, don’t use hair dryers and hair curling irons, don’t dye your hair or do chemical perming.
- Cosmetic masks, both industrial and home production, are a great treatment for postpartum hair loss. You can easily find a lot of recipes how to prepare hair masks yourself on the Internet. But you need to take into account that the young mother usually has very little time for herself, and making these masks takes time: you’ll need to mix the ingredients, to apply the mask, and to wash it off in time. In this sense, hair masks from the store are more convenient. Very effective are oil masks, which are specially prepared mixtures of essential oils. The main components of such masks are burdock oil and vitamin A and E oil solutions. By the way, vitamins A and E in the form of a solution can be added to shampoos, balms, and other hair products, making them more effective.
- During the period of postpartum hair loss, it is generally necessary to revise all your hair care products. Put the shampoos and hair balms bought in cosmetics shops aside for a while. You should replace them with special medications sold in pharmacies. These shampoos not only have a light cosmetic effect but also affect the scalp. The active ingredients are causing a rush of blood to the hair follicles. That means the nourishment of your hair is getting better.
- The necessary condition for combating postpartum hair loss is healthy nutrition. Food is the main source of vitamins and nutrients. A healthy diet must contain a lot of proteins, calcium, vegetable oils, fruit, and vegetables.
If the process of postpartum hair loss lasts too long or is very intense it makes sense to consult a specialist. Usually, in order to combat hair loss, experts prescribe massage and mesotherapy.
On average, postpartum hair loss begins 3-4 months after childbirth and lasts for about 2-3 months. Besides taking measures against postpartum hair loss, it is necessary to observe one more important condition: emotional stability of the young mother. Rest and positive attitude will help you to overcome any problem.