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Understanding Hair Loss Post Delivery

Hair Loss Post Delivery

Understanding Postpartum Hair Loss

During pregnancy, increased levels of estrogen prolong the growing phase of hair, leading to fuller and glossier locks. After delivery, as hormone levels return to their pre-pregnancy state, a larger number of hairs may enter the shedding phase simultaneously. This phenomenon is called telogen effluvium and usually starts around three to four months postpartum.

While it can be distressing, this type of hair loss is generally temporary and resolves on its own within six to twelve months. However, there are steps one can take to support hair health during this time, including focusing on proper nutrition.

The Role of Iron in Hair Health

Iron is an essential mineral that our bodies need for many functions, one of which is hair growth. Iron helps red blood cells carry oxygen to our cells, including the hair follicles, promoting healthy growth and repair. A deficiency in iron can disrupt this process, leading to weakened hair strands, and eventually, hair loss.

Why New Mothers Are at Risk

New mothers are particularly prone to iron deficiency for several reasons:

1. Blood Loss During Delivery: Childbirth often leads to significant blood loss, which can deplete iron stores.
2. Breastfeeding: Iron stores can be further depleted if a woman is exclusively breastfeeding and not replenishing her iron stores through diet.
3. Insufficient Diet: Lack of time and energy might lead to suboptimal dietary choices, neglecting iron-rich foods.

Iron Supplementation: A Practical Solution

For women experiencing hair loss post-delivery, especially if accompanied by symptoms of fatigue, weakness, and pale skin, assessing iron levels can be a critical step. A healthcare provider can confirm an iron deficiency through blood tests and may recommend iron supplementation.

Here's how iron supplementation can make a difference:

1. Restores Iron Levels: Taking iron supplements can quickly restore the body's iron levels, addressing the deficiency.
2. Supports Hair Growth: By improving the oxygenation of hair follicles, iron helps in strengthening hair strands and promoting growth.
3. Enhances Overall Well-being: Adequate iron levels support overall energy and well-being, essential for coping with the demands of new motherhood.


Hair loss post-delivery is a temporary yet troubling concern for many women. Understanding the role of iron in hair health and the risk of deficiency in the postpartum period can empower new mothers to take proactive steps in managing this issue.

Iron supplementation, when guided by healthcare providers, offers a targeted approach to support hair growth and overall health. Along with a balanced diet, proper rest, and gentle hair care, iron supplementation can be an essential part of the recovery process post-delivery.

Remember, individual needs vary, so scheduling a consultation with a Complete Healthcare for Women - Kortney Jones ARNP to tailor a plan specific to your needs is always the best approach. By embracing these supportive measures, new mothers can look forward to the gradual return of their hair's vitality and strength.


Complete Healthcare for Women - Obstetrics and Gynecology


Richard Lorenzo, D.O.

Kortney Jones ARNP

Kortney Jones, ARNP Kortney Jones, ARNP Kortney Jones is board certified by the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners. She provides ob-gyn services including birth control, pregnancy and prenatal care, and infertility as well as gynecological services such as women’s health and wellness, abnormal uterine bleeding, endometriosis, pellet hormone therapy, and menopause.

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