I’m Losing My Hair

I'm Losing My Hair

 

A few days ago, I frantically came to the realization that I had been denying for months – I’m losing my hair.

 

Over the past 4 months, I’ve noticed that I’ve been shedding more than normal. After I wash my hair, the drain is covered and my hairbrush has to be cleaned weekly, when before I could go months before it was full of hair. I’d been telling myself I was imagining it, but it’s gotten to the point where it’s looking back at me in the mirror. Any hopeful doubt I had disappeared when I got my hair cut this weekend, and my hair stylist agreed I was shedding more than normal.

My entire life I have been blessed with thick hair. Tons of it. To the point that it’s a pain in the ass to style, but I’ve always been thankful for it. Now, for the first time in my life, I can see my scalp through my hair without making a part. My normal part has also gotten noticeably wider, when before it was so thin, it barely showed any of my scalp. I’m fortunate that I don’t have any bald spots, but my hair has gotten much less dense, and in a very short amount of time.

 

When I finally admitted to myself that I’ve been losing my hair, I was up all night researching. As far as I can tell, there are two likely culprits – my birth control, or my hair products. The problem is, I can’t pinpoint the exact time that I think my hair started falling out, which would make it easier to determine the cause. My birth control is the more likely culprit, especially since I made the switch to the Nuva Ring in July. However, a search of my hair products, Living Proof, which I started using last October, turned up a few results of people reporting hair loss. I realize that forums of people reporting hair loss is anecdotal, but I’m willing to explore any possible cause. Living Proof contains the chemical methylisothiazolinone, which has replaced parabens as a preservative in many beauty products. It is banned in parts of Europe and has been linked to hair loss in numerous products, including Wen, which is currently facing a class action for causing dramatic hair loss.

 

I have an appointment with my dermatologist in December. Hopefully she can shed some light onto what is happening, and how to stop it. I also have an appointment with my gynecologist later in December and will change my birth control if he and the dermatologist think it’s the best bet.

 

In the mean time, I had 4 inches of hair cut off to make it look less drab and thin at the ends. I’m also taking biotin and I am only using hair products without methylisothiazolinone (not easy to find). I know it’s a long shot that my shampoo is causing my hair to fall out, but I’m terrified of losing any more. I’m willing to make any changes necessary to stop the hair loss, and hopefully get it to grow back.

Beauty
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  • When I lost a bunch of hair, I was really really upset (I did have bald spots) so I hope you’re not feeling that way. It grows back fast! Biotin will definitely help.

    • Thanks! I’m glad to hear yours grew back!

      I’m not full on panicked yet because I’m thinking and hoping the cause is something I can control and change. I don’t think I’m quite at the age where it would be age related hair loss and where there isn’t much I could do about it. Hopefully whether it’s hormones from the BC or hair products, I can make the necessary change and it will grow back.

  • The worst. Mine grew back, but I panicked first for sure. The first time it happened, it was low iron, the second time it was low vitamin d. Your dermatologist can run blood tests for both of those. I’m sure it’ll be an easy fix!

    • Thank you! You’ve given me more hope! I don’t eat any red meat and I started a very low calorie diet a few months ago so there’s a good chance I’m not getting all the nutrients I need and am low on vitamins. I’ll be sure to bring this all up when I see my dermatologist.

  • Jae

    I, too, am blessed with thick, coarse hair (unlike my mom’s). I do get hair fall probably due to religiously coloring my hair (I don’t blowdry/use any other heat tools), but it’s not bothersome, although I’m kind of worried when my mommy friends said that you lose hair when you get pregnant. I’m not on any medication, so coloring my hair has got to be the only reason (or lack of vitamins, IDK).

  • I discovered that I had lost over 50% of my hair this time last year. I have been working with a Doctor and I have a thyroid autoimmune illness (which was hard for me to figure out because the lack of medical history). I found out I also have Vitamin D deficiency. I take pre-natals, prescription vitamin D, and biotin. My doctor told me not to use rogaine because if you want to have kids, which I do, that you have to stop taking it. Hope this is helpful. I’m sorry this is happening to you and I whole heartedly understand what you’re going through!

    http://staygoldautumn.com/2016/08/female-hair-loss-in-my-20s/