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Five recommendations for your patients experiencing postpartum hair loss

Here are five recommendations that can be communicated to your female patients who are experiencing postpartum hair loss, according to a New York-based dermatologist courtesy of the American Academy of Dermatology.

“Excessive hair shedding after pregnancy is very common and caused by falling estrogen levels,” said dermatologist Dr. Jessica J. Krant, assistant clinical professor of dermatology, SUNY Downstate Medical Center in New York.

“It usually starts about three to four months after giving birth and peaks several weeks later. The good news is that women don’t have to do anything to remedy it. By their child’s first birthday or even earlier, most women see their hair return to its normal fullness,” added Dr. Krant, who was quoted in a press release.

If a woman is bothered by excessive hair shedding, Dr. Krant recommends the following tips:

  1. Use a thickening shampoo: These shampoos often contain ingredients like protein that coat the hair, making the hair appear fuller;

  2. Avoid “2-in-1” conditioner-shampoos: These contain heavy conditioners that can weigh down hair and make it look limp;

  3. Use a conditioner formulated for fine hair: These contain lighter formulas that will not weigh down hair. Patients should avoid conditioners labelled “intensive,” which are too heavy;

  4. Use conditioner primarily on the ends of the hair: Conditioner applied onto the scalp and on the top half of the hair can weigh down the hair; and

  5. Try a new hairstyle: Some haircuts can make hair appear fuller. An experienced hair stylist can help your patient find a cut, style or colour that works well for them. These patients, however, should be encouraged to avoid treatments that may worsen hair loss, such as chemical treatments or excessive styling.

These tips are demonstrated in a “Hair Loss in New Moms,” video posted to the AAD website and YouTube channel.

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