In general, we lose between 80 and 100 hair strands a day, but when spring comes, and especially in fall, hair loss increases notoriously. There is no need to worry about it, it’s completely normal. Keep reading and we’ll tell you all about seasonal hair loss.
What does “seasonal hair loss” mean?
It’s an increased hair loss phase during a specific season of the year. Your hair falls out and you lose some volume, but as soon as the season is over, it grows back. This cannot cause alopecia, it’s merely a shedding period. Both men and women experience it, but it’s more evident in women because they usually have longer hair.
When does seasonal hair loss occur?
Seasonal hair loss comes with the beginning of spring, but it’s much more intense during the months of fall. It’s not a sign of alopecia among women nor men, it’s purely a shedding stage in which we’ll see more hair strands on our pillow when we wake up or in our brush after styling it.
Hair growth cycle
Our hair completes a full cycle during which it’ll grow, rest, fall out and regrow. Understanding how this cycle works will allow you to remain calm and know why your hair is falling in a specific season and it will prevent you from thinking you’re developing alopecia.
The three stages of the hair growth cycle
- Anagen: it’s the growth phase and it can last several years. Usually, about 90% of our hair is in this phase.
- Catagen: during this phase, that lasts approximately 3 weeks, hair strands stop growing, but keep attached to the follicle, so they don’t fall out.
- Telogen: hair remains in a resting phase for about 3 months. During this time, it comes off the follicle and, since it has fully grown, it falls out so new hair can be produced. About 8% of our hair is in this phase.
Seasonal hair loss causes
- Like all mammals, humans also go through a hair-shedding period and that is exactly what causes this phenomenon. During the fall, there are more follicles in the telogen phase and that causes us to lose more hair than in any other time of the year.
- Having fewer hours of sunlight also has an impact on our prolactin and melatonin production and this provokes a more intense hair loss.
- The hair growth cycle coincides with the beginning of fall and that’s when we start to shed hair.
Hair loss products efficacy during this period
As we explained, this phenomenon is the result of an increased number of hair follicles during the telogen phase. It’s a natural part of the hair growth cycle in which hair strands must come off so new ones can grow.
Although there are many products in the market that guarantee to stop seasonal hair loss, there are no background studies that prove it. Since it is a natural cycle, it is hard for a product to interrupt it. However, you can follow some hair care steps so, when fall begins, you don’t go through an extreme hair loss period also caused by having damaged hair.
Tips to have healthy hair and avoid excessive hair loss
If you take good care of your hair all year long, it won’t be brittle and debilitated when seasonal hair loss starts, so you’ll avoid an excessive hair shedding. Proper hygiene practices will help you have strong, healthy hair.
Follow these tips so you only lose the necessary amount of hair when the time comes.
- According to your type of hair, you should wash it differently.
- Use products that suit your scalp type.
- Boost microcirculation with small scalp massages when washing your hair. Gently press with your fingers in circular motion to stimulate the nutrient flow to the follicle.
- Do not use hair straighteners and blow dryers excessively.
- Avoid using chemicals like hair straightening products and hair dye.
- Follow a healthy, low-fat, low-sugar diet.
- Avoid stress and anxiety, two powerful hair loss causes.
Food that can help you have stronger hair
A healthy diet is essential to prevent hair loss, to strengthen hair and prepare it for the shedding phase. These are some of the foods you should be eating if you want to have a stronger scalp:
- Oily fishes like sardines are a good source of omega-3.
- Foods rich in vitamin C like oranges, kiwis, grapefruits, carrots, peppers and beetroots.
- Avocados and almonds can help us increase our vitamin E intake.
- Lean meat, mushrooms, beans, nuts, seafood and cocoa will boost your zinc intake.
Including these foods in your diet will strengthen your hair and scalp and avoid an excessive hair loss.
Seasonal hair loss is completely natural and there’s nothing to be worried about. During the months of spring and fall, you’ll notice how you start losing more hair than usual, but it’ll grow back. However, if you feel the situation is getting out of control or you begin to see some bald spots on your scalp, you should go to the doctor and get examined so you can determine whether it’s a normal thing or you need to be referred to a dermatologist.