Postpartum hair loss is when you lose your hair after giving birth. It can happen any time after giving birth, but is usually experienced in the first few months.1
Many women experience hair loss, but it can be an upsetting thing to go through. However, most women who report losing hair after giving birth find that it grows back.2
It’s not known exactly why many women experience postpartum hair loss, but it’s likely to do with hormonal changes after giving birth.
We all lose a small amount of hair regularly, but during pregnancy this reduces due to how hormonal changes affect hair follicles. So, when your pregnancy is over, you may see an increase in shedding.1
There is no specific treatment for postpartum hair loss. Most of the time, the hair loss will resolve on its own.2
It’s important to eat a balanced diet and supplement vitamins if needed, as this can help keep you and your hair healthy. Try to avoid damaging your hair with heat treatments or too much brushing.3
Losing your hair can affect your confidence. Reach out to supportive friends and family or join a support group if you need to talk. If you’re struggling to deal with the effects of postpartum hair loss, talk to your GP, midwife or health visitor.4
Postpartum hair loss is usually not permanent. Your hair should return to normal after six to nine months.2 But if you feel the amount of hair you are losing after giving birth isn’t normal, or it’s not growing back, talk to your GP.
Your GP may be able to find an underlying cause of your hair loss, like a vitamin deficiency or female pattern alopecia.1 They may also refer you to a dermatologist, a specialist who diagnoses and treats hair and skin conditions.
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- Piérard-Franchimont C, Piérard GE. Alterations in Hair Follicle Dynamics in Women. BioMed Res Int. 2013;2013:957432. doi:10.1155/2013/957432
- Telogen Effluvium. Alopecia UK. Published July 24, 2020. Accessed April 20, 2023. https://www.alopecia.org.uk/telogen-effluvium
- Good hair care advice. Gloucester Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. Published January 2022. Accessed April 21, 2023. https://www.gloshospitals.nhs.uk/media/documents/Good_hair_care_advice_GHPI1694_01_22.pdf
- Women and hair loss: coping tips. nhs.uk. Published April 9, 2018. Accessed April 20, 2023. https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/hair-loss/coping-tips-for-women/
Reviewed by: Mital Thakrar
Review date: April 2023
Next review: April 2026