Pregnancy is one of the biggest hormonal changes that can happen to a woman. These hormonal changes can cause a myriad of side effects, including changes to hair. However, because the hormonal changes during pregnancy are so great, the side effects can be drastically different from person to person.
Can pregnancy cause your hair to fall out?
Hair is unlikely to fall out during pregnancy. Instead, postpartum hair loss is more likely, with many women experiencing hair loss after the baby is born. Some women experience hair loss during early pregnancy, but this is uncommon.
Is it normal to lose hair during early pregnancy?
It is normal in some cases to experience hair loss during pregnancy, particularly early pregnancy. This is largely due to either the stress and/or shock of experiencing pregnancy. Rather than being directly tied to pregnancy, this is actually telogen effluvium.
Telogen effluvium largely occurs during the first trimester of pregnancy and should discontinue further into the pregnancy. If you are experiencing hair loss after the first trimester, you should talk to your midwife or GP about this, as it can be a sign of an underlying health condition
What happens to your hair when you are pregnant?
Because pregnancy causes such wild fluctuations in hormones, there are a variety of effects that can happen to your hair; such as thicker and fuller hair, or alternatively, it can become more brittle and drier.
During pregnancy, rising estrogen levels naturally slow the hair cycle. This means that hair follicles shed at a slower rate, resulting in the appearance of thicker and fuller hair while pregnant. This also means that the hair follicles produce less oil (sebum) which causes a shinier, fuller appearance. However, this is not always the case.
One of the reasons that hair can become brittle is due to the increased levels of progesterone. Progesterone is released in high amounts during pregnancy, but it can cause the hair to become brittle. Due to the increased brittleness of the hair, the hair is more likely to break at the root, which can cause the appearance of hair loss. However, this isn’t what we would class as typical ‘hair loss’.
Keep in mind that each pregnancy is different. What happens to your hair during your first pregnancy can be totally different from what happens during the second.
How can I stop my hair from falling out during pregnancy?
As hair is unlikely to fall out during pregnancy, there is no need to prevent hair from falling out during this time. While it may be quite jarring to see 300 or more hairs shedding each day, it usually resolves on its own without treatment.
How long does postpartum hair loss last?
Postpartum hair loss will last between 6 to 12 months after birth. After 6 to 12 months, the hair will start to grow back to its original state.
Can you go bald from postpartum hair loss?
It is extremely unlikely that postpartum hair loss means that you will go bald. It is likely that you will experience a lot of hair loss, however, this normally grows back after 6 to 12 months.
Does postpartum hair loss grow back?
Yes, hair that is lost from postpartum hair loss does grow back. On average, a third of women report that their hair looks thicker, with more body and shine after recovering from postpartum hair loss.
It is not uncommon to experience hair loss during pregnancy or postpartum. If this is something you are experiencing, you should discuss this with your midwife or GP. For more information about hair loss, get in touch with a member of our expert team, today.