Postpartum hair loss due to breastfeeding is a symptom that many women experience after childbirth.
Although some women experience hair loss while breastfeeding, breastfeeding itself is not the cause of hair loss. It is just that the timing overlaps, and it is more accurate to call it postpartum hair loss rather than breastfeeding hair loss.
It is common to lose 50 to 100 hairs per day. There are many mothers who blame breastfeeding during the first 3 months after childbirth because more hair falls out.
Hair loss is a natural phenomenon. The hair growth cycle is usually 2 to 3 years, and not all hairs grow and fall out at the same time.
During the growth cycle, 90% of hair grows and 10%-15% goes into telogen. When the hair that has entered the resting phase falls out, new hair grows.
Hair loss is normal, but changes occur in your body during pregnancy and postpartum. Hormones secreted during pregnancy stimulate hair growth, resulting in less hair loss.
The phenomenon of hair falling out after childbirth, which did not fall out during pregnancy, is called ‘telogen hair loss’ and is a very normal and temporary process.
How to minimize postpartum hair loss while breastfeeding
Hair loss that occurs during postpartum or breastfeeding is a natural process that occurs after childbirth, so it cannot be completely eradicated, but it is advisable to manage it carefully during that period.
1) Intake of B vitamins
Vitamin B6 is an essential nutrient for hair, and according to Palafox Virgil, vitamin B6 lowers the rate of hair loss when taken orally. You can also recommend a vitamin B group supplement in consultation with your doctor.
The B vitamins include vitamins B1 (thiamine), B2 (riboflavin), B3 (niacin), B5 (pantothenic acid), B6 (pyridoxine), B7 (biotin) and B9 (cobalamin).
Vitamins B6, B7, and B12 are the most effective B vitamins for hair care, and they also play a role in helping energy intake from food.
2) Eat well
To reduce hair loss, you need to pay attention to your diet. Instead of taking the aforementioned B-vitamin supplements, consider including foods rich in B-vitamins in your diet.
Among various foods, fish, in particular, contain a large amount of vitamin B12 . Sardines contain 8.9 mg of vitamin B12, which is often recommended for relieving postpartum hair loss symptoms.
Beans such as lentils, kidney beans and lima beans contain 444 to 482 mg of vitamin B9 or folic acid, which can improve hair health at 400 mg daily.
Bovine organs such as the liver and kidneys are also high in vitamin B, and 100 g of bovine liver contains 80 mg of vitamin B12.
3) Massage the scalp
Scalp massage should not necessarily rub the scalp. First, determine whether your hair is dry or oily and start massaging the scalp to stimulate the sebaceous glands. If you find that your scalp is on the drier side, you could even make yourself a scalp mask using a good quality olive oil, such as the Gundry MD Polyphenol Rich Olive Oil, in order to deeply moisturize your scalp using entirely natural ingredients.
People with oily hair already secrete a lot of sebum, so massage the scalp with your palms so as not to overstimulate the sebaceous glands. Conversely, if you have dry hair, gently massage the scalp with your fingertips in a circular motion for 2-3 minutes.
4) Hair Care
After giving birth, use a hair-friendly product with a mild, neutral pH. If you want to dye your hair, first consult with a professional.
Keep in mind that the current scalp is sensitive and can be greatly affected by chemicals such as dyes, shampoos, and conditioners.
Postpartum hair loss is a process that women go through after childbirth, but it is also a good idea to see a dermatologist if you lose too much hair for too long.