I had a baby two months ago and now my hair is shedding all the time and my hair is thinning on the top of my scalp. Is there anything that I can do to stop my hair loss and to re-grow my hair?
Dr. Friedman’s Answer:
When you were pregnant, the placenta was producing a tremendous amount of female hormone that actually caused your growing phase of your follicles to stay in a growing phase. Typically 80% of our follicles are in a growing phase and 20% are in a resting phase where the hair falls out. (See Hair Growth Cycle).
When a women is pregnant that ratio changes from 80% to almost 95% growing. When the placenta is delivered after the baby is born, that growing phase ratio of 95% growing, 5% resting now has to go back to the normal ratios of 80% and 20%. Therefore, for a period of 12 months following delivery you will notice your hair thinning but it is not to the point of being unnatural, it is to actually lose the hair that you should have lost during those 9 months of pregnancy but you maintained those hairs instead.
Most women who have thick hair will not even notice that their hair is thickening while they are pregnant, while most women who have thinning hair prior to pregnancy will notice that their hair actually looked the best when they were pregnant and actually will start thinning again after delivery.
We have found that using low-level laser therapy has been successful in moderating that tremendous fall-out commonly called telogen effluvium, which is a normal reaction to losing the placenta.
For those women who experienced scalp hair thinning prior to being pregnant, I think those women will probably notice a marked decrease in their hair thickness after the baby is born and should consider low-level laser therapy to try to prevent any more hair loss.
To answer your question in summary, it is a physiologic change that is normal to see more shedding after delivery of your baby.
— Dr. Shelly Friedman, DO
Board Certified Hair Restoration Surgeon
Arizona’s Most Trusted Hair Loss Doctor
Named Phoenix Magazine’s Top Doc – Hair Transplant Surgeon