Shedding is a normal and expected part of our hair life cycle. Shedding refers to the hair that naturally falls out as part of the telogen phase. On average we shed about 50 - 100 strands of hair a day.
Postpartum shedding is significantly different from everyday shedding. To understand shedding after a woman has given birth it’s important to understand how the hair was functioning before.
One of the things that can be noted when a woman is carrying a baby is that their hair becomes thicker and grows a lot more than what they normally experience. This is because there is a hormonal shift in their system and they, at the time of the pregnancy, produce more estrogen. The production of this hormone causes the hair strands to extensively stay in the anagen stage of hair growth. This is the production of hair stage.
Once given birth the hormones go back to being balanced and this drops the production of estrogen in the body. This then allows the hair to continue the cycle of hair growth however with significant changes which include excessive shedding. It’s like the hair that was meant to shed months ago only gets a chance to shed now after the baby is born. So to have a better picture of shedding, think of it as all the hair accumulating waiting for the right time to shed.
As much as losing hair is not great and has a lasting effect on us, it’s important to know that postpartum shedding is not permanent. It usually takes about 3 months for the hair to get back to how it normally grows but in some cases it can take up to a year for the hair to fully go back to it’s normal state.
As much as we can’t fully prevent postpartum shedding, there are things that can be done to subside the severity of the shedding. This includes a healthy diet. We already know that healthy eating results in healthy hair, so this will help strengthen your hair strands and reduce excess breakage. Vitamins intake post giving birth is also important to help balance the hormonal changes in the body. It’s important to consult with a medical professional about your specific vitamins.
Another way that you can slow down postpartum shedding is by doing a black tea rinse in your washdays. How do you do a black tea rinse? You first soak your black tea overnight (use 2 tea bags in two cups). Shampoo your hair as normal, then after drying with a towel rinse your hair with the black tea. Massage it onto your scalp and wear a plastic cap for 60 minutes. Then rinse with cool water and deep condition to lock in moisture. Continue with your washday as normal.
It’s important to remember that the remedy is not meant to stop the shedding but reduce it significantly. If you feel that the shedding you are experiencing is too excessive then it’s important to consult with a professional.
That’s all we have for you today. See you next time.