Pregnancy and Hair Loss

Pregnancy affects each woman at least a little bit differently. The fact of the matter is that there are many different ways that pregnancy will change your body. One of the areas in which your body may change because of pregnancy is in the area of your hair. Many women experience losing some of their hair during pregnancy. Fortunately, that hair loss is not typically severe at all, and will often go unnoticed.

It’s important to understand a little bit about how hair grows in the first place. Around 90 percent of your hair is in a growth phase at any given time. The other 10 percent of your hair is resting. About every two or three months your hair that’s resting will fall out. This lets new hair grow in its place.

Most of the time, you don’t really need to worry about losing your hair during pregnancy. The most common problem in regard to hair and pregnancy is a condition known as “telogen effluvium.” This is the excessive shedding of hair, and it typically will happen between one and five months after your baby is born. Just under half of women will experience at least some hair loss immediately following pregnancy.

Why exactly does this happen? While you’re pregnant, a higher than usual percentage of your hair will go into that resting portion of the growth cycle. Typically, the amount of hair that does this won’t create a bald spot on your head or lead to any long-term hair loss. For most women, by the third or fourth month after delivery, chances are pretty good that your hair will be back to normal, or at least well on its way to being back to normal.

For most women, it isn’t only a risk of losing your hair during pregnancy, of course. There are other ways that your hormone levels can change and cause you to have hair loss. For example, if you discontinue taking birth control pills, you may have a temporary dip. The same goes for a miscarriage. Some women with a natural hormonal imbalance will also experience this kind of hair loss, quite apart from pregnancy altogether.

Leila Pereira
Leila Pereira
I work in occupational therapy and occupational science. I specialize in early intervention pediatrics for children from birth to three years old; with an emphasis on children with autism. My goals are to support the achievement of developmental milestones in your child while collaborating with caregivers & parents; including play skill development, education, leisure, rest and sleep, feeding, nutrition and social participation. Licensed by the California Board of Occupational Therapy

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