Hair loss in women during and after a pregnancy

A pregnancy can lead to major changes in the hormonal balance of a woman and therefore also to the hair situation. The hormone level fluctuates during pregnancy. Many women feel that their hair is thicker and fuller during pregnancy. This may have to do with a change in the number of hairs in the resting phase, but the exact reason is still unknown.

About 6 months after delivery, additional hair loss often occurs in women. How this can be prevented is unknown. It is also uncertain whether the extra hair loss causes the hair status to become the same as before the pregnancy.

What specific treatments are there for women against hair loss?

There are different treatments for women against hair loss. For women, the following products and treatments may be of interest: Minoxidil (Rogaine), hair transplantation, hair thickening products (Toppik), wigs and hair extensions.
Something that can be discussed with your doctor, but not approved by the FDA, is the use of Propecia. However, this can go hand in hand with (serious) side effects.

– Minoxidil (Rogaine) is available at the pharmacy and available in various concentrations. There is a 2%, 4% and 5% concentration to obtain. This product must be used twice a day. Research has shown that Minoxidil can help maintain your current hair status and possibly provide a bit of regrowth. It is important that you avoid Minoxidil on the face or neck, because it may also cause additional hair growth.
There is a 2% concentration on the market for women. Higher concentrations can be prescribed by your doctor.

– Finasteride (Propecia) is a medicine / hair growth agent approved for men by the FDA. Extensive investigations have also been carried out for women. It appears that this product is unsafe for women of childbearing age. Only after women have been in transition, is this product safe to use. Finasteride (Propecia) can be used off-label, at your own risk, by women who are not pregnant or want to become pregnant while taking the medication.  Studies have shown that Finasteride (Propecia) in some women can ensure the maintenance of hair status and possibly also regrowth.

– Hair transplants can be useful in some women (and men) to thicken areas on the scalp with little hair with transplanted hair.

Nutritional allergy and food intolerance

In case of a food allergy or intolerance, you get physical complaints after eating a certain food, while another does not get sick of it. An allergy or intolerance to nutrition manifests itself in many different ways. From skin complaints to stuffiness, abdominal pain or a lack of energy. In this dossier by you can read what a difference is between an allergy and an intolerance.

Every person has an immune system, the system that comes into action when your body is ‘attacked’ by a bacterium or virus. Your body makes antibodies against the intruder.

In a food allergy, your immune system makes antibodies against parts of the diet – actually innocent substances but not according to your body. You also see these antibodies back in the blood. In the event of a food allergy, the reaction immediately occurs. Your tongue will become fat or you will become stuffy.

In case of an intolerance, the intestines react to certain foods, for example you have a feeling or diarrhea. However, there is no question of antibodies. With an intolerance, it takes longer that you respond to nutrition.

Food allergies and food hypersensitivity are often confused. That is not strange, because the symptoms are very similar. In case of an intolerance, the immune system is not involved and the reaction proceeds via a different route.

Food allergy

You can be allergic to foods that contain proteins. A lot of plant and animal nutrition contains proteins (allergens). Proteins are in grains (the gluten), crustaceans, eggs, peanuts, soy, milk and celery.

An allergy is built up. Sometimes people can eat certain foods for years without problems and then ‘suddenly’ are allergic to them. The immune system has then, after (much) contact, developed the ability to react with an allergy.

Food intolerance

In the case of a food intolerance, the intestines respond to certain foods. They are literally ‘intolerant’; for example, because they lack a certain enzyme and therefore do not tolerate or absorb food. For this reason, a food intolerance can have different physical consequences.

An intolerance is often less direct; it is often only determined when you experience vague complaints for a long time. The best-known forms are lactose and gluten intolerance, but other forms also exist, such as fructose intolerance (fruit sugar), histamine intolerance, intolerance to additives and egg intolerance.