Articles Tagged with: postpartum alopecia
Can Women Who Are Breastfeeding Have a Hair Transplant?

Can Women Who Are Breastfeeding Have a Hair Transplant?

It isn’t easy being a new mom. The new responsibilities and routines (or lack thereof) of motherhood can be overwhelming. Chronic sleep-deprivation and a body recovering from pregnancy and childbirth while also producing wildly fluctuating hormones don’t help matters. This hormonal whiplash manifests itself in several physical and emotional ways, and for many women, that includes unwelcome and unexpected hair loss.

Also called postpartum alopecia, hair loss after childbirth is a common phenomenon. Up to 90 percent of new moms experience some degree of hair loss three to five months after giving birth, and many women experience excessive shedding, even hair falling out in clumps, during that time.

While postpartum hair loss is almost always temporary, some new mothers have underlying, chronic hair loss problems as well and may be considering a hair transplant. While hair transplants are a safe, proven, and effective way of addressing hair loss in women, undergoing such a procedure in the child’s first year, especially if that child is breastfeeding, is not advised. 

Why Does Postpartum Hair Loss Happen?

Many pregnant women feel that their hair seems thicker and fuller than it did before their pregnancy. That’s due to elevated estrogen levels that increase the percentage of hairs in each growth cycle, while simultaneously freezing follicles that are in the resting phase of hair growth. But estrogen levels fall dramatically after childbirth, and all the hair that was thriving starts to fall out. While we all shed hair regularly, at a rate of about 80 hairs per day, the extent of postpartum shedding can raise that number to closer to 400 hairs each day.

This increase in shedding, and the chances of postpartum hair loss eventually resolving itself on own, is part of the reason that new mothers should wait before they consider hair transplant surgery. With your hormones and your hair follicles so much in flux, it can be difficult for your hair transplant surgeon to determine the optimal locations for the extraction and transplantation of follicles. This lowers the chances of achieving the desired result. 

More critically, breastfeeding moms should wait until their child is weaned before undergoing a hair transplant. The procedure is a surgical one, which means that medications will be ingested during and after the surgery to address pain and assist in healing. These medications, like all medications taken while a child is breastfeeding, could wind up in breast milk.

While you may not be able to stop postpartum hair loss during these first months after childbirth, changing up your hairstyle and keeping your stress levels under control can help you ride out this temporary condition.  Just as life slowly returns to a new normal as the months go by after having a baby, so too will your hair.

Call the Miami Hair & Skin Institute Today If You Have Hair Loss Questions

While most postpartum hair loss is temporary, not all hair loss problems are. If you are concerned about or are experiencing hair loss and want to know what you can do about it, please contact the Miami Hair & Institute. Our world-renowned physicians diagnose and treat hair loss cases through advanced hair restoration surgery techniques and alternative non-invasive treatments.

To receive a personalized evaluation and treatment plan, contact us online or call our office directly at 305-925-0222.

Is Postpartum Hair Loss Normal?

Is Postpartum Hair Loss Normal?

Is Postpartum Hair Loss Normal? New moms have a lot to deal with. Adjusting to the new realities, responsibilities, and routines (or lack thereof) of parenthood can be overwhelming, and chronic sleep-deprivation doesn’t help matters. But for many women, the months after giving birth also comes with the unwelcome and unexpected sight of hair loss.

Postpartum hair loss – also called postpartum alopecia – is a common phenomenon. Up to 90 of women experience some degree of hair loss three to five months after giving birth, and a large percentage of new mothers experience excessive shedding, even hair falling out in clumps, during that time. The good news is that this hair loss is almost always temporary and hair growth returns to normal in plenty of time for baby’s first birthday party.

Why Does Postpartum Hair Loss Happen?

Every mom knows the havoc that their hormones wreak on their body during pregnancy. But the months that follow delivery also involve dramatic fluctuations in hormone levels as the body returns to its normal state. This hormonal whiplash takes its toll on hair as well.

Many pregnant women notice that their hair seems thicker and fuller than it did before their pregnancy. That’s because elevated estrogen levels increase the percentage of hairs that are in the growth cycle, while simultaneously freezing hair that is in the resting phase of hair growth. After childbirth, estrogen levels fall dramatically, and all the hair that was growing so beautifully starts to fall out. While we all shed hair regularly, at a rate of around 80 hairs per day, the extent of postpartum shedding can raise that number to closer to 400 hairs a day.

While you may not be able to stop postpartum shedding, changing up your hairstyle and keeping control of your stress levels can help you ride out this temporary condition.  Just as life slowly returns to a new normal as the months go by after having a baby, so too will your hair.

Call the Hair Transplant Institute of Miami Today If You Have Hair Loss Questions

While most postpartum hair loss is temporary, not all hair loss problems are. If you are concerned about or are experiencing hair loss and want to know what you can do about it, please contact the Hair Transplant Institute of Miami. Our world-renowned physicians diagnose and treat hair loss cases through advanced hair restoration surgery techniques and alternative non-invasive treatments.

To receive a personalized evaluation and treatment plan, contact us online or call our office directly at 305-925-0222.

Adrenal Glands, Stress Hormones, and Hair Loss

The Science Behind Stress-Induced Hair Loss and Telogen Effluvium

Adrenal Glands, Stress Hormones, and Hair LossThe unwelcome feelings of stress and anxiety creep up when you least expect them. While intermittent feelings of worry are relatively normal, damaging stress levels are on the rise. These feelings of despair and anguish sometimes provoke thinning or shedding on the scalp. Stress-induced hair loss, called telogen effluvium (TE), can be short-lived or long lasting. Thinning or shedding inadvertently caused by anxiety and trauma is not only frustrating, but worrisome. In addition, trichotillomania is a less common but very serious hair loss condition perpetuated by stress. Unlike TE, patients suffering from trichotillomania actively pull hairs out habitually when facing stress and anxiety to cope.

A 2014 national poll from NPR in partnership with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Harvard School of Public Health found more than one in every four Americans suffered great deals of stress the month prior to the survey. Half of those adults, or 115 million people, experienced a major stressful event that year. [1] Per the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, anxiety disorders – often explained as chronic high stress and worry – are the most common mental disorder in the United States. Anxiety affects 40 million adults in the U.S., or 18 percent of the total national population. [2]

The American Hair Loss Association says TE and stress-induced hair loss is likely the second most common form of hair loss seen by dermatologists. [3] Although little research has been done to help physicians understand why some patients see hair loss because of stress while others do not, three possible cause and effect scenarios exist:

TE Scenario 1: Environmental factors shock the hair follicle into a resting state. Because the follicles are not actively producing more hair to replace ordinary shedding, patients see diffuse patterns of thinning on the scalp. The effects of environmental “shock” show up two to three months after a major life event. Depending on the duration of the event, follicles can return to their normal healthy state without surgical intervention. Patients usually see their condition clear up in less than six months with full regrowth.

TE Scenario 2: Hair follicles enter their resting state as normal but do not regenerate properly, resulting in gradual hair loss. Rather than return to the anagen phase of hair growth, the follicles remain in the telogen state for prolonged periods of time. Thus, fewer anagen, or active, hair follicles are available. Because this scenario is prolonged, patients may not see immediate thinning. This is more common in individuals with chronic anxiety conditions.

TE Scenario 3: A less discussed form of telogen effluvium occurs when hair follicles go through truncated cycles. This results in persistent shedding and thinning hair.

Many short-term hair loss cases are considered normal. For instance, many women experience short-term hair loss after giving birth due to fluctuating hormone levels – a condition called postpartum alopecia. Most women regrow their hair normally a few months later. Certain vaccines, antidepressants, extremely low-calorie diets and physical trauma are also common environemntal triggers of TE. Chronic illness, particularly chronic stress and nutritional deficiencies, are alternative instigators. Research shows a link between tension, hair follicle biochemistry changes and increased resting (telogen) hair follicles.

Treating Stress-Induced Hair Loss and TE

Luckily, treatments for telogen effluvium are available. Assuming your hair loss is stress-induced, regular exercise, therapy and meditation can help. When a specific cause is not determined and stress relief does not reverse telogen effluvium, doctors resort to treatments such as low-level laser therapy (LLLT). In cases where stress-induced hair loss transforms into an enduring condition, many patients turn to hair loss surgery.

At the Hair Institute of Miami, we welcome patients suffering from stress-induced hair loss to undergo a comprehensive evaluation. Our treatment plans include low-level laser therapy (LLLT) caps and advanced follicular unit transplant (FUE) procedures. Either alone or in conjunction with one another, LLLT and FUE helps patients suffering from lingering telogen effluvium regain their confidence and sense of well-being. Call us today at 305-925-0222 to schedule your personalized hair loss consultation in Miami.

 

[1] http://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2014/07/07/323351759/for-many-americans-stress-takes-a-toll-on-health-and-family

[2] https://www.adaa.org/about-adaa/press-room/facts-statistics

[3] http://www.americanhairloss.org/types_of_hair_loss/effluviums.asp