Hello Baby, Goodbye Hair
Post-baby hair feeling lackluster and thin? Telogen effluvium is a common type of hair loss that can occur after childbirth. Temporary hair loss happens in the postpartum period primarily due to hormonal changes. To prevent or treat hair loss, certain supplements can help.
1. Iron for healthy hair
A vital nutrient to achieve healthy hair and skin is iron. Low iron levels can lead to anemia, which can cause hair to shed. Postpartum women are especially at risk of anemia due to blood loss during delivery. Eat iron-rich foods such as green vegetables or take iron supplements to achieve adequate iron levels and promote healthy hair growth.
2. Add in vitamin C
Any person taking iron supplements must also take vitamin C simultaneously for the most benefit. Vitamin C is an antioxidant that promotes hair growth and good hair health. Additionally, vitamin C helps increase iron absorption. Fruits such as oranges, blueberries, kiwis, and strawberries are excellent sources of vitamin C in the diet.
3. Zinc for length
Another essential vitamin for repairing and promoting hair growth is zinc. This mineral is vital to make proteins necessary for hair and other cells. Zinc-rich food sources are beans, nuts, whole grains, and oysters. A prenatal or multivitamin will also likely contain this essential mineral.
4. Stimulating hair follicles with biotin
Known as the go-to vitamin for hair growth, biotin helps stimulates hair follicles to promote growth. Biotin can also increase the rate of follicle growth. Egg yolks, nuts, mushrooms, and sweet potatoes are all rich in biotin, or extra can be obtained from a supplement.
Not too much
Taking too many vitamins can lead to side effects for the patient. For women who are lactating, the health of the breastfed baby is another important consideration when taking any pill. Be cautious when taking mega doses of any vitamin. A healthcare provider can advise on the recommended amount to promote hair growth while minimizing potential risks for mom and baby.
Other healthy hair tips
Besides taking supplements, practicing healthy habits can reduce hair loss after pregnancy. Apply shampoo and conditioner that adds volume to the hair. Consider getting a haircut for a change. Many new moms prefer short hair, which adds volume. Avoid tight ponytails when possible.
A temporary problem
Women struggling with postpartum telogen effluvium will eventually regain hair with time. Usually, within 1-year full hair growth is achieved. Some women may experience thinner hair than before pregnancy. If hair loss persists for more than 6 months, consult the healthcare provider. Other reasons that may play a role in hair loss include stress, iron deficiency, or thyroid problems.
Restoring length and strength
Hair loss after pregnancy is a natural process that women go through. However, supplements and a healthy diet can help reduce or prevent hair loss. With the proper nutrients, hair can return to pre-pregnancy length and strength, looking better than ever before.