For decades, many women have used birth control as a safe, effective technique for preventing unplanned pregnancies. However, an increasing number of women have experienced a concerning side effect: random hair loss immediately after beginning hormonal contraception.
Read on as we explore the mechanisms behind this phenomenon and what options exist for women seeking solutions.
How Does it Work?
Using hormonal contraceptives can sometimes trigger or exacerbate hair loss in women. Up to 50% of women using hormonal contraceptives like pills, patches, rings, or implant report experiencing hair loss during use.
Hormonal birth control contains both estrogen and progesterone or just progesterone. They alter the hormone balance in your body and thicken cervical mucus, which stops ovaries from releasing eggs during ovulation.
How Are Birth Control and Hair Loss Connected?
Altering hormone levels through birth control can disrupt this cycle and cause hair shedding.
Estrogen, in particular, helps keep hair in the growing phase for longer. When estrogen levels fluctuate or decrease, the hair can enter the resting phase earlier. This resting phase is when hair sheds from the scalp.
Progesterone can also impact hair follicles and increase dihydrotestosterone (DHT) levels, a hormone linked to hair loss. The combination of changes in estrogen and progesterone contributes to the birth control-hair loss link.
Women with a genetic predisposition for hair loss may also find that hormonal birth control catalyzes or exacerbates genetically caused hair thinning – especially those with a family history of hair loss.
Treatments for Birth Control Related Hair Loss
There are a variety of options that you can opt for if your hair loss due to birth control. These are some of the treatments available.
This involves surgically transplanting hair follicles from areas of the scalp that are less affected by hair loss to bald or thinning areas. The transplanted hair follicles will continue to grow and replace the lost hair.
It is a low-level light therapy that uses laser light to stimulate hair follicles and promote hair growth. The treatment can help increase hair volume and density for women experiencing hair thinning and loss due to birth control.
This involves attaching synthetic hair strands to the existing hair to fill in bald patches and give the appearance of a fuller head. The extensions need to be redone periodically as the natural hair grows.
What to Do When Experiencing Hair Loss Due to Birth Control?
Hair loss is a frustrating side effect that can occur with some birth control pills. The key is to identify hair loss early on and take action to stop further breakage and regrow your hair.
Here are some tips:
Stop taking the birth control that is causing hair loss. However, always consult your doctor first before stopping any medication.
Implement healthy hair habits. Reduce stress, follow a healthy diet with protein, and consider taking supplements like biotin, zinc, and iron.
Practice patience. Hair loss from birth control typically continues for 1-6 months after stopping the medication, so it will likely take some time before you see regrowth. It can take up to a year for your hair to fully regrow.
Use haircare products to help with thinness. Consider thickening shampoos and conditioners, volumizing sprays, and texturizing creams.
Consider wigs, extensions, or toppers. These can help cover thin spots while your natural hair regrows.
Get Expert Hair Loss Solutions Today!
Tired of thinning hair? At New-U, our hair loss experts have solutions that work. We offer various FDA-approved products and medical-grade treatments to stop hair loss and stimulate hair regrowth.
If you’re dealing with hair loss, we can help. To schedule a free consultation, click here.
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