Lots of new mums notice that, a few months after giving birth, they start to shed hair. Pregnancy-related hair loss (or telogen effluvium, to give it its full and proper name) can give you a bit of a fright, but is nothing to worry about.
By the time your child turns one, the hair has usually regrown completely.
50% of mums affected by pregnancy-related hair loss
In fact, hair loss of some kind, affects half of mums after pregnancy. This is because levels of the hormone estrogen, which have increased in the body during pregnancy, drop once the baby is born.
This is why lots of pregnant women feel that their hair is full and healthy looking, but notice it thinning after pregnancy. It is also known as the resting phase.
While there’s nothing you can do to stop pregnancy-related hair loss happening, here are a few ways to prevent further damage to your hair or to make your hair appear fuller…
Top tips for fuller hair
- Taking a postnatal vitamin tablet daily can ensure that you don’t suffer from any vitamin deficiencies and can help your hair grow healthily. It is important to ask your healthcare professional before taking any supplements, particularly during pregnancy or when breastfeeding.
- Use shampoos containing Biotin, which helps against brittle hair.
Use a wide tooth comb on wet hair, never a brush and avoid tying it up too often, as hair bands can snap the hair
- Heat damages hair so try to stay away from the hairdryer or curling tongs as much as you can to give your hair the best chance
- Massaging your scalp can help improve blood supply to the scalp and in turn promote hair growth. Some people use castor or almond oil to massage
- Many people rinse their hair with beer, as a treatment. This is because it there is yeast in it which contains ingredients such as folic acid and biotin – great for hair health
- The Chinese herb He Shou Wu is often recommended after pregnancy to reduce the extent of hair loss as it contains the mineral Zinc
- While post-partum hair shedding is natural and normal, having thin hair can be frustrating. Another way to make hair appear fuller is to choose a good quality thickening shampoo and to limit strong conditioners. A good haircut or certain hair shades can also make hair appear thicker.
- If in doubt about any supplements or herbs that are supposed to promote hair growth, ask your doctor.
Remember that pregnancy-related hair loss is perfectly normal, happens to lots of women and isn’t permanent!