During my pregnancy I had the most fabulous, bouncy, 1970's baby-sitter hair imaginable. It was so amazing, in fact, that I went out of my granola-way to wear it in multiple styles, keep it gorgeously groomed, and generally adore it - all while trying to maintain a very non-attached relationship with it.
I had heard that it was common to experience hair loss post-baby - and truly, right before I brought the new kid home my dog Buster's behavior made me want to rip my hair out (see his version
). But I didn't yank it out by the handfuls. I didn't have to: now that the little Jake had arrived it fell out on its own!
So here I was, supposed to be glowing in the goddessliness of being a new mom - and instead, I felt like I was balding. My hair seemed to be falling out in record amounts.
According to the American Pregnancy Association ,
, hair loss after delivery is totally common. Apparently, an increased number of hairs go into a resting phase during pregnancy - part of the hair loss pattern. The most common period of loss happens about three months after birth, when hormone levels normalize and the resting hairs fall out. Most women see a regrowth of hair within three - four months after baby, but by then my normally cascading river of locks had still evaporated to a mere trickle!
Since I was breastfeeding, I knew to err on the side of caution and not even attempt to promote growth with supplements, no matter how gentle they were. I had planned to nurse until 2 years - the age advised by most major pediatric associations/societies world wide - so I waited. And waited, and waited, and waited. I tried everything recommended, which I knew then (and still know now) to be absolutely important to do:
- Gentle, proper hair care: combing with wide-toothed comb when wet, no metal clips or ties, gentle shampoos and conditioners, avoid styling with heat
- Fill up on fresh fruits and veggies to provide protection for hair follicles and regrowth
- Supplements with Vit B complex, C, E, biotin and zinc
I created a maintenance routine that by all standards seemed a religious rite, including: daily brushings, scalp massages, a deep conditioning treatment each night, a warm shower including a rinse with diluted apple cider vinegar.
A little fringe showed up at the top of my forehead. It looked cute on Katie Holmes, and even glam on J.Lo, but not on me. As the little hairs grew out, did they add volume as they lengthened? No. And to boot, they looked greyer.
A headband took up permanent residence to hold them all back.
Near Jake's 1st birthday he decided to wean himself; the wean saddened me, naturally - ok, I was sad until it hit me: not only did the wean mark the near-return of my boobs (yes, they would come back! Yes!), but I could finally herb my way to fuller hair!
I picked a formulation that incorporated herbs to feed my scalp and follicles with everything they needed for new hair growth, and kick-started the inactive ones (thanks for that, hormones). I did a 90 day regime, and low and behold: I was now in possession of one magnificent mane!
Dear readers, as I sit and write, twirling my locks through my fingers, I am grateful that I have repossessed my crowning glory. I know how hair loss can affect one's sense of self - whether it is from illness, post-pregnancy, or even heredity. Take care of your existing tresses by grooming gently, maintaining a healthy diet, and investing in an effective herbal formula, like
, to bring hair back. You won't have to stress about the tress(es) again!