What Causes Thin Hair In Women
Its possible to fix thinning hair, but we need to know why its falling out in the first place. There are several reasons why women experience thinning hair.
Unlike men, women dont usually get a receding hairline or a bald spot, but hair doesnt grow as it should. Hair has a shorter growth cycle over the crown, falls out quicker, and the wispy hairs are short.
Why Does Your Hair Get Thicker During Pregnancy
Its thought that excess hair growth in pregnancy is related to oestrogen. During pregnancy the body releases oestrogen, which causes the hair growth and loss cycle to slow down. So rather than shedding hair as normal, the scalp retains it. As a result you may notice that your eyelashes, the hair on your head and eyebrows grow thicker during pregnancy.
Not all women will find that their hair grows thicker and shinier during pregnancy in fact some may even experience hair loss during this time. Hair loss during pregnancy is relatively uncommon, but you can expect your hair to go through several changes over the course of your pregnancy.
Hair Loss During Pregnancy
While this usually happens after pregnancy, some women do experience hair loss when theyre expecting. Try lavender oil scalp massages to promote hair growth and avoid tight hairstyles or vigorous brushing which could pull out delicate hair strands. Last but certainly not least, ensure youre eating a healthy, balanced diet and even try incorporating some supplements into your daily routine. Wed recommend zinc, Biotin, Iron, and Vitamins C and D for luscious, healthy hair.
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Dont Forget Conditioners And Volumizers
Applying conditioner after shampooing your hair is essential to maintaining healthy locks. Conditioner is a vital hair-care step that adds moisture to help replenish hairs sheen and natural oils lost during shampooing. And volumizers work like a splint to strengthen each strand of hair, plumping it to provide more volume per strand.
Managing Hair Loss After Pregnancy
As stated above, its common to experience hair shedding after pregnancy, but for most women this will just be temporary. You may be concerned that your hair loss is not stabilising and that you are not experiencing the expected regrowth in the months after you have given birth, however this is not necessarily cause for concern. Womens hormones return to normal at different times after pregnancy, and usually its simply a case of waiting.
If your hair loss persists for many months after pregnancy you should visit your doctor, as theres a chance that it could be a sign of another condition. The most obvious explanation for prolonged hair loss in women is female-pattern baldness, which can affect women as young as their 20s or 30s.
If your doctor suspects that you have genetic, permanent hair loss they may recommend a treatment called minoxidil. This is a foam or lotion rubbed into the scalp once or twice a day. It is a very effective treatment for women with female-pattern baldness, as it has been shown to halt hair loss and promote regrowth in the majority of women who use it.
Minoxidil must be applied every day for three to four months before any improvement will be noticed. It must then be used on an ongoing basis to ensure hair loss remains stalled and new hair growth is possible.
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Can I Repair Chemically Treated Hair Loss
There is really no way to fix your hair after it has been damaged by straighteners, dyes and perms, but you can take action to regrow a healthy mane and prevent further damage. According to the American Academy of Dermatology, people often misconceive that hair is living, but in reality, it does not heal itself once it is injured. Chemicals strip the hair of natural moisturizers that protect it and make it shiny. As a result, the hair breaks off or becomes dull, dry and frizzy.
Trim your hair at least 1/2 inch each month to slowly remove the damaged hair, as there is no way to truly restore your hair to its original condition.
Shampoo your hair just a few times a week with a creamy, sulfate-free hair cleanser. On the other days, you may opt not to wash your hair or use strictly conditioner 3.
Apply a protein-based, leave-in conditioner to your mane on a daily basis depending upon the level of dryness.
Apply a mask to your hair for 10 to 20 minutes once a week.Consider using warm olive oil or a mixture of egg whites and tepid water. Leave the mask on overnight with a shower cap for even deeper conditioning. Rinse with a sulfate-free shampoo.
Stick to a color that is within three shades of your natural color to cause less damage, if you must dye your hair. Dying your hair darker will also be less damaging.
Hair Care And Styling Tips
When youre experiencing significant shedding its important to be extra gentle with your hair. Scott Ade, senior hairstylist at Larry King Hair, says to avoid all chemical services, the use of high heat when styling, and even brushing as much as possible. When you do brush your hair, always start at the ends and work your way back towards the root, he suggests. If you start at the root and comb down towards the end you will compound tangles and theyll be even harder to get out. This can result in further, unnecessary shedding. I highly recommend using a Tangle Teezer, he says.
In addition to this effective detangling brush, to prevent knots Ade says to try the Larry King Liquid Hairbrush, a brilliant, lightweight detangling conditioner, followed by Redken One Unitedspritzed through your mid-lengths when the hair is damp if you have mid-to-long length hair. Go easy on sticky or heavy styling products such as mousse, wax and gel, he adds.
If the loss leaves your hair looking significantly thinner or patchy, a root concealer is a good temporary solution to replace some lost density. Try a product originally designed for those experiencing hair loss like Manes Hair Thickening Spray, applied along the hair line and parting, while your hair regrows.
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Why Does Hair Loss Happen After Pregnancy
After you have given birth, the excess hair that was not shed during pregnancy will be lost. It may seem as though you are losing abnormal amounts of hair, but in actual fact your hair is simply returning to normal.
Its also believed that childbirth can be a trigger for telogen effluvium, a type of hair loss which causes widespread thinning on the head. Telogen effluvium is associated with intense physical or emotional stress.
More severe hair loss, including hair loss that causes patchy bald spots, may be a sign of another problem such as a vitamin deficiency.
Postpartum Hair Loss Causes
During pregnancy, raised oestrogen levels help to keep hairs in their anagen phase for longer than usual, advises Anabel. This usually means less hair is shed, particularly towards the end of your 2nd Trimester. Hair also tends to feel healthier and shinier around this time.
After giving birth, these levels drop, returning to normal, which can cause all the extra hairs retained during pregnancy to shed in a short period of time, Anabel continues.
However, its not always as simple or clear cut as hormonal changes. The most important thing to realise with any hair shedding is that hair is not essential to physical survival so our body views it as a dispensable tissue. Hair is therefore super sensitive to our general state of health and when anything is amiss internally, or our nutrition is sub-optimal, our hair is often the first thing to suffer. Because of this, its really common for hair loss to be more severe, or to continue for longer than it should, due to other factors that commonly happen postpartum.
Iron deficiency, thyroid imbalances, breastfeeding, lack of sleep and a poor diet can all contribute to the quality of our hair. And all of these are common with new mothers.
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What Causes Hair Loss After Giving Birth
All hair on our bodies grows in a cycle that can last anywhere from two to seven years. The active or growing phase of a strand of hair is called anagen and determines the length of our hair. After a period of time, the hair follicle enters a transition phase before entering its resting phase . Shedding occurs and the process starts all over again.
Changes related to your hormone levels before, during and after pregnancy can affect hair growth. Its completely normal to experience hormonal imbalance after giving birth, and one of the symptoms of hormonal imbalance is postpartum hair loss.
The medical term for postpartum hair loss is telogen effluvium. The condition, which is also referred to as postpartum alopecia, is relatively common, affecting between 40-50% of women in the months following childbirth.
Postpartum hair loss occurs after childbirth because of the sudden change of hormones in your body, particularly the change between progesterone and estrogen.
Can I Prevent Postpartum Hair Loss
Unfortunately, you cant prevent it, but there are methods you can employ to mitigate the losses. Although every method may not work for you, there are some things your doctor or dermatologist may recommend trying, both to jumpstart the growth of new hair and disguise your hair loss:
- Keeping your scalp healthy with antifungal shampoos.
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A Woman Wants To Look Beautiful All The Time
How Much Postpartum Shedding Is Normal
If youre finding a surplus of strands on your pillow or clogging the shower drain, youre not imagining things. Salinger explains that when you havent just had a baby, losing about 80 hairs a day is normal, but that new moms shed about 400 hairs a day. By six months postpartum, the hair loss should slow to pre-pregnancy amounts.
If you feel the shedding is not slowing down, chances are good that there are other health issues at play. Pregnancy can change your level of ferritin and can put your thyroid out of whack, so make sure to tell your doctor that youve noticed a lot of hair loss, and ask to have blood tests done to check both.
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Dont Fear Washing Your Hair
Often the sight of an increased strand-count in the shower post-pregnancy, can make you want to put off washing it. However, stopping washing your hair as much because of fears of accelerating the hair loss is something you needn’t be worried about. You will lose the same amount of hairs whether or not you wash your hair once a week or once per day, this really has no impact on hair fall, says Iain. Left washing your hair a few more days? He warns not to be alarmed by the extra fallout. “You’ll have lost the same amount of hairs per day but saved them up for when it’s washed…which can be very traumatic!”
How often should you wash it? If your hair’s a little sensitised after giving birth, aim for two to three times a week. Dont wash your hair too much or too vigorously and dont go overboard on product – this will dry the hair out causing it to break easily and appear even thinner, advises Craig. Use gentle pressure to help reduce the stress to the scalp and hair. Keeping your scalp clean will also aid healthier hair regrowth.
Whats The Go With Minoxidil Treatments
If youve done some research, youve probably come across some hair thinning products that contain an active ingredient called minoxidil traditionally a high blood pressure medication .
Minoxidil acts as a vasodilator, which can assist the restriction caused by DHT in the presence of female pattern hair thinning , explained Evans-Frost.
Okay, lets break this down a little. While minoxidil can assist in female pattern hair thinning , it may not work for all types of hair loss.
As many would have read and seen online, minoxidil is touted as a cure-all for all types of hair loss. However, this is not true. When the hair loss is diffuse , it is more to do with the hair cycle so the use of minoxidil may not work.
Again, we reckon its best to chat with a specialist before going gung-ho with the minoxidil treatments.
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How Hormones Affect Your Hair
Hormones are the biggest reason for your pregnancy hair changes and postpartum hair loss.
During pregnancy, your high levels of estrogen prevented your usual rate of hair loss. Normally, your hair falls out in small amounts every day. During pregnancy, your hair loss decreases. The effect is compounded by your increased blood volume and circulation, which also causes your hair to fall out less than normal.
So after your baby arrives and your hormone levels drop, your hair makes up for lost time by falling out in much bigger clumps than it normally does. The total volume of your hair loss probably isnt more than you would have lost over the last nine months, it just seems like it because its happening all at once.
Postpartum hair loss can set in any day after your baby arrives, and it sometimes continues as long as a year. It usually peaks around the 4-month mark, so if your baby is a few months old and youre still losing clumps of hair, that doesnt mean its time to panic!
How To Stop Postpartum Hair Loss
Because postpartum hair loss is a normal result of your changing hormones, it is not something that you can immediately stop. However, there are steps you can take to minimize the effects of postpartum hair loss and help promote healthy hair growth.
Here are six things you can try for postpartum hair loss treatment:
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How Can You Prevent Postpartum Hair Loss
While the condition may not be entirely controllable, maintaining a healthy, well-balanced diet, as well as supplementing with a decent multivitamin , can reduce shedding. Treating your mane with a little extra care can also keep strands intact, so brush gently, use a wide-comb, and avoid yanking a stiff brush through it while its wet. Also, avoid using heat tools and tie it back with soft accessories like scrunchies or coil hair ties instead of elastics or *gasp* rubber bands. .
Best of all, there are products specifically designed to strengthen strands during this transition period, and weve rounded up the best ones! Luckily, all of our favorites can be found on Amazon. Dont forget to sign up for your for two-day shipping and other awesome deals to help you through your postpartum journey.
Check out the best postpartum hair loss treatments below!
How To Prevent Postpartum Hair Loss
Can you stop postpartum hair loss? Probably not, but you might be able to control it. According to Dr. Shah, good nutrition is essential after giving birth, and it can help keep your hair strong, healthy, and intact . Don’t skimp on your protein and iron intake!
That said, if the shedding seems out of the ordinary, you may want to check with your doctor. They may test you for thyroid disorders or other health issues.
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How Much Postpartum Hair Loss Is Normal
As we mentioned before, it can be difficult to establish what is normal as the rate varies from person to person with some not experiencing anything noticeable at all. But on average a person loses anywhere between 50-150 hairs a day, however, post pregnancy you can experience hair fall of up to 400 hairs a day, which is why its quite noticeable.
Keep A Good Hair Routine
Contrary to popular belief, washing your hair less will not help with postpartum hair loss. Instead try to keep to a simple hair routine of cleansing, moisturising and simply styling your hair. Make sure you use a mild shampoo and conditioner and please avoid chemicals and heat! Why? Well, heat, chemical straighteners or dyes can leave your mane even dry and more prone to damage.
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