Many women have thicker and healthier hair during pregnancy because their oestrogen levels are high. The increased oestrogen level means that hair remains in its growing phase longer, leaving fewer hair in the resting phase, which is the phase during which hair is shed.
After birth, the levels of oestrogen fall, and larger amounts of hair go into the resting phase, causing excessive shedding, or hair loss. Although there is no way to completely prevent hair loss after pregnancy, it can be minimised by taking certain measures.
The American Pregnancy Association (APA) recommends a diet rich in fruits and vegetables. These contain high levels of flavonoids and antioxidants that encourage hair growth by protecting hair follicles. Fruits and vegetables that are highest in antioxidant power include blueberries, cranberries, kiwis, spinach, artichokes and peppers. Maintaining a well - balanced diet will ensure minimum hair loss after pregnancy.
For a woman, maintaining health before and after pregnancywill result in long term benefits in many aspects of her and her family’s life. Nutritional supplements will go a long way to help her achieve that. According to APA, a new mother should supplement her diet with vitamins B complex, C and E, biotin and zinc.These will specifically help minimize hair loss. However, any supplements should be taken after consultation with the doctor, to ensure that doses are not too high. This is especially because some supplements are not safe if taken in large amounts.
A drop in oestrogen can cause hair loss after pregnancy. Other complications of pregnancy like a miscarriage or stillbirth, abortion or hormonal imbalance may also cause hair loss. They can be remedied the same way, that is by proper diet and supplements.
Apart from these, there are some home remedies that helps prevent hair loss after pregnancy.
Following are some of the most effective treatments :
Soak fenugreek seeds in water overnight. Massage the strained liquid into the scalp next morning. Wrap a towel around your head and leave for 4 hours. Shampoo and condition.
Prepare a mixture of olive oil, rosemary, egg yolk and lemon juice. Apply all over head, paying special attention to hair roots. Leave for an hour and wash off.
Boil some rosemary leaves in water for about 5 minutes. Cool, strain and use for your hair wash.
Massage a raw egg yolk onto scalp and leave for 15 minutes. Wash and shampoo hair and comb gently with a wide toothed comb. Leave to dry naturally. Do this once a week to strengthen hair roots.
Mix an equal amount of warm castor oil and almond oil and massage on scalp once a week.
Massaging just almond oil on scalp 2 -3 times a day will help to stop further hair loss.
Coconut milk and aloe vera gel are also very good for hair growth. Massage onto scalp, leave for ½ hour and rinse with warm water. You can repeat this three times a week.
Apart from these home remedies for pregnancy related hair loss, make a habit of the following for improved hair health:
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