A woman running her fingers through her hair. She is wearing a white top against a pink background

Hair loss in pregnancy

Why is my hair falling out?

If there aren’t already enough challenges when pregnant, now you’re experiencing hair loss as well…

Hormonal changes in pregnancy can affect your hair making it thinner, or, if you’re one of the lucky ones, thicker. Many women experience hair loss during pregnancy, this is due to your changing oestrogen levels brought on by the pregnancy.

If your hair has begun falling out during pregnancy, this is generally as a result of a decrease in your oestrogen levels.

Your oestrogen level can decrease for a variety of reasons including;

  • stopping the oral contraceptive pill
  • hormonal imbalance
  • sadly even pregnancy loss.
It’s also common for women to experience hair loss post-pregnancy when hormones are returning to normal pre-pregnancy levels.

Losing hair during pregnancy is nothing to be overly concerned about. If you feel like your hair loss is extreme or hasn’t returned to normal by the time your baby is one it is worth consulting with your doctor. As a rule of thumb, losing anywhere between 50 to 200 scalp hairs a day is considered normal.

What can I do to limit my hair falling out in pregnancy?

There are a few things you can try which may limit the amount of hair lost during and post-pregnancy. It all depends on the reason behind the hair loss.

  • Ensuring you eat a well-balanced diet rich in protein, iron and other critical nutrients.
  • Avoid hair styles which encourage hair to fall out, styles such as braids, buns and pony tails.
  • Wash your hair gently and use a soft comb or brush to ensure you are not pulling out any additional hairs with harsh brushing.
  • Avoid over-heating your hair with excessive drying, straightening or curling.

Why has my hair thickened during pregnancy?

On the flip side, your hair can become thicker. You will generally experience your hair thickening in the second trimester. This is due to an increase in  oestrogen levels.

Hair has three phases as part of its life cycle. Firstly, the growing phase (anagen), secondly, the end of the growing phase (catagen) and the final phase when the hair dies and falls out (telogen). Being pregnant causes your hair to stay in the growth phase longer than it normally would. This in turn makes your hair look and feel thicker for longer.

In summary, hair loss during and after pregnancy is common, however if you have any concerns at all, ensure you reach out to your doctor for a consultation.

Until next time lovely, stay wonderful


A woman looking at her hair brush at the hairs that have fallen out of her hair during pregnancy

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