Breastfeeding and Hair Loss

One of the things many women are skeptical about is hair loss during breastfeeding. While most women tend to grow their hair, it starts falling off when breastfeeding. Hair loss, especially when breastfeeding, can be scary and lead to postpartum depression. Here are a few things you need to know about breastfeeding and women’s hair loss.

Does One Lose Hair When Breastfeeding?

Even though this is a common misconception, the answer is no. When breastfeeding, you do not lose your hair. One of the things many people forget when it comes to hair is that it is prone to shedding. When a woman is pregnant, the estrogen levels in her body will increase, which helps reduce the amount of hair one loses. That is why most pregnant women have a fuller head of hair. After delivery, the estrogen levels in the body will drop, leading to more shedding. Most women see this shedding and mistake it for hair loss.

Ways to Prevent Excessive Shedding When Breastfeeding

While the shedding might not be so much for some women, there are scenarios when it gets so excessive one can even lose their hairline. The good news is there are a couple of things one can do to prevent this excessive hair shedding.

Use Volumizing Shampoo

One of the things you need to ensure is the shampoo you use on your hair is rich in protein. That will ensure that your hair strands are strengthened and your hair does not fall off easily. Avoid shampoos with harsh chemicals as they will dry up your hair and make it more brittle.

Use the Right Conditioner

While the right conditioner will make your hair regain its volume, the wrong one will weigh it down. Since your hair is falling off quickly, it shows that it is weak and should be treated with care. One of the ways of doing this is to do is get conditioners. Avoid shampoos that come with conditioners since these will do more harm than good to your hair.

Try a Different Hairdo

The period after you have your child is very stressful. Often you find that you hardly have time to yourself. There are times when you will go weeks without washing or styling your hair. Most women in this situation resort to a ponytail to keep hair out of their face. While it might work as a solution for the time being, it can also affect your hair significantly. When tying the ponytail, you often tie the bun too tight. A tight bun will cause tension in your hair and increase the chances of it falling off. It is recommended that in case you want to have your hair in a bun, tie it in a loose bun. If you have curly hair or afro hair, then cornrows would work best since they are not too heavy and will ensure your hair stays protected.

Talk to Your Doctor

If you are doing all of the above and still notice significant hair loss, you need to talk to your doctor. They can run a couple of tests on you to ascertain whether the hair loss is caused by the drop in estrogen in your body or if there is an underlying cause. They can also offer tips on how to look after your hair postpartum.


Hair loss affects over half of new lactating mothers. While it might not cause an alarm, it can be devastating to notice that your hair is falling out. Ensure you talk to your doctor and see what they would recommend. The hair loss will stop when you are done breastfeeding, but it helps if you have a way to reduce the amount of hair you lose daily.