After giving birth to my first child, I felt excited for my body to return to normal. Instead, I was surprised by a wealth of new changes: My skin was different, no longer clear and glowing from pregnancy hormones, my breasts were rapidly changing as I learned how to breastfeed and, strangest of all, my hair was falling out... in large amounts.
Many new moms aren’t prepared for postpartum hair loss and are often panicked by the side effect. Here are some helpful thoughts to help you understand what’s going on up top:
1. Postpartum Hair Loss is Normal.
If hair loss after giving birth has you worried, perhaps you’ll find comfort in knowing that it’s completely normal. In fact, most women experience some degree of hair loss during this time, even though visibility ranges from case-to-case. If you have thin or fine hair, your hair loss may feel extreme, but it’s temporary and a natural part of the process.
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2. Hair Loss is Caused By Hormone Changes.
Increased hair loss experienced by women after giving birth is easily explained by the drastic hormonal changes the body is experiencing. After your baby is born, you can expect your elevated estrogen levels to quickly drop to normal. In addition to hair loss, this drop in estrogen can cause a wide variety of symptoms, including postpartum depression.
3. Postpartum Hair Loss is Temporary.
Even though increased hair loss after giving birth is completely normal, it is still a bothersome symptom! The good news is, this annoying part of postpartum life is temporary. You can expect relief from shedding by the time your new baby turns one.
4. If You're Experiencing More Than a Year of Hair Loss, See a Doctor.
According to the American Academy of Dermatology, postpartum hair loss is completely normal but there is a point when it should be addressed by a dermatologist. If you continue to experience excessive shedding after your child’s first birthday, make an appointment with your dermatologist or a trichologist (a hair and scalp specialist).
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5. Smart Hair Care Can Reduce Appearance of Thinning Hair.
To combat the appearance of thinning hair, practice smart hair care. Use a volumizing shampoo and conditioner specifically created for thin hair. When you condition, only apply near the ends of your hair. since conditioner can weigh your roots down and emphasize the appearance of the scalp.
Adjusting to the many body changes that come with pregnancy, giving birth and your child’s first year of life isn’t easy. Knowing what to expect postpartum can help you better prepare yourself for this part of life. Ultimately, caring for yourself by getting plenty of rest, drinking a lot of water, eating nutritious food, and practicing regular hair care is the key to feeling your best during this exciting time of your life.
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Tell us in the comments: Have you experienced post-partum hair loss? How did you manage it?