A Conversation About Postpartum Hair Loss
I was blessed with a thick mane of naturally curly hair. I have always loved my hair and mostly hated having it cut etc. When I was younger I would go to Canada every Summer and my grandmother would braid or have someone from her church braid my hair. I always felt so amazing having freshly braided hair. The problem was after a month or so with the braids, they would get messy and I would have to take them out. Living far from my grandmother, I was usually left to try to maintain my hair (my mom was amazing at doing my hair when I was younger, but there was a point where she turned it over to me). Being a young, tomboy-ish girl, that usually meant a high poofy ponytail. I didn’t mind the pony tail, it was just SO hard to brush. When I was in 8th grade I decided to chemically straighten my hair. After doing so, it made it a lot easier for me to maintain myself. That being said, the roots had to be touched up every 6-8 weeks. I soon learned how to do this on my own and was pretty set on independently managing my hair. Because of the straightening, I also had a lot of breakage (from the chemicals and heat of an electric straightener). It seemed like every time I would cut my hair, I would get split ends right away from all the heat. This just made my hair shorter and shorter. Therefore, I decided to not cut my hair…don’t judge haha.
The point is, my hair never got very long or luscious over the years, it pretty much stayed the same length. That is until I got pregnant with my first baby. I decided not to chemically straighten my hair during my first pregnancy. My hair was a freaky half straight half curly phenomena when left undone, but it was getting thicker and longer. I was loving all the growth and thickness. I felt like a pregnant version of Beyonce (minus the incredible dancing skills) with my thick mane. It was awesome!!! Until…the postpartum hair loss! I’m pretty sure nobody told me about this. Around three months postpartum, I would brush my hair and clumps of hair would come out on my brush. (P.S. I love the Wet Brush-it’s great for getting tangles out of wet or dry hair!) Hair was everywhere (except my head)! I literally wanted to cry every time I saw my brush full of my precious hairs. I could not figure out what was happening! I don’t remember how, but somehow I found out about postpartum hair loss. It was a little comforting in that it was an actual thing, but it was still so sad.
Fast forward about 16 months and it was happening again about three months after the birth of my little boy. WHY?!!! I was so sad, but at least this time I knew what was coming. Why must we get teased with the amazingness of a full head of Beyonce shakeable hair to looking like her significant other, Jay Z (who is practically bald). Ok, that’s a little dramatic, but it just seems like such a tease.
Well in doing some further research, thanks to Parents.com, I found out that during pregnancy, increased levels of estrogen in your body freezes hair in the resting phase of the hair loss cycle. This means that when you’re not pregnant, your hair falls out naturally, but during pregnancy it doesn’t fall out as much. After having the baby the estrogen levels drop and all the hair that wasn’t falling out now falls out. I guess this makes sense, but it’s still sad ha!
The moral of the story is that I knew again that it was coming, but when it happened I again wanted to cry a little. I am now 3 months postpartum from baby number three and it’s HAPPENING again!! Although, I don’t have a solution to this problem, I just want you to know you are not alone shedding tears with each brush stroke. I am with you! I am filling my sink with tears with you!!
Let us all embrace our Jay Z -looking selves together…..we will be Bey again someday!
Thanks for reading!!
Share something you didn’t expect with pregnancy/postpartum in the comments below!
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