The average number of hair lost in a day is about 100-150. However, in case of PCOS women it might be much more. The paradox is that while PCOS women have hair where they do not want it to have, they struggle with hair loss on the head at the same time.
PCOS and hair loss – why is it happening?
Many PCOS women deal with heightened levels of androgens (male hormones). One of the androgens, testosterone, is responsible for hair thinning and hair loss. A male-pattern hair loss (androgenic alopecia) is often seen in women with PCOS (but it can also be because of thyroid disorders so check your thyroid as well), usually at the top of the head (vertex) and the angles of the frontal hair line.
The exact reason why this happens is unknown, but genetic, hormonal, and environmental factors are all thought to play a role. Testosterone is believed to be a major factor. During a chemical reaction in our body, testosterone is converted into 5-alfa-dihydrotestosteron (DHT). The DHT is thought to cause hair follicles to miniaturize and this is said to contribute to male pattern hair boldness.
What can you do about hair loss when you have PCOS?
1. Diet, diet…and once again diet
The key is to manage the level of testosterone. Keeping it under control means that you will prevent further loss of your hair and baby hair will grow quicker. The most effective treatment for androgenic hair loss, as in case of other PCOS symptoms, is healthy and clean eating, healthy lifestyle and regular exercise.
2. Proper hair care on a daily basis
If you take a proper care about your hair, you will see a huge difference in the quality and quantity of your hair. Hair colour, bleach, perm or pulling your hair back up should be avoided as they aggravate the scalp.
Blow drying should be done with a hair dryer about 6 inches away. As the hair starts to dry reduce the heat gradually. Avoid blow drying hair from damp to dry to minimise hair damage, brittleness and split ends.
Use of a brush with sharp bristles should be avoided. Smooth combs are preferable.
Conditioning the hair removes tangles, particularly at the ends of the hair.
When you wash your hair make sure you use organic ingredient shampoo to remove DHT residue.
Try not to wash your hair every day. The less frequent you wash it, the less oil it produces. Check how many days you will go between washing.
Choose your hair products wisely. Most of the products contain sulfate and alcohol which should be avoided as they strip our hair from the necessary oils keep them healthy and that they grow properly.
Rollers should to be used carefully, and not tightly. Similarly, pins and clip use should be minimal and never while sleeping.
If elastic bands and barrettes are used at all, they must not be tight. They have been noted to cause traction alopecia. Similarly, pulling the hair too tightly from the forehead may also lead to severe hair breakage
3. Proper supplementation will help
Here is a list of some natural supplements that might help when deadline with hair loss:
Saw palmetto – a natural testosterone suppressant. It addresses hair loss and hirsutism because there is less testosterone available to convert to DHT. The recommended daily dosage is 320 mg daily for at least 6 weeks. It should NOT be taken during pregnancy, nursing or while trying to conceive.
Biotin – has long been known to assist with hair growth. 7-9 mg daily is recommended.
If you are UK based, a good deal for biotin can be found here or here.
Spearmint tea – reduces testosterone and balances other hormones.
If you are UK based, a good deal for spearmint tea can be found here.
Root Rehab – Natural Hair Growth Vitamins For women and men. I highly recommend to try it out! If you are UK based, a good dead for Root Rehab can be found here.
N-acetyl Cysteine (NAC) – also reduces testosterone and has been studied to improve insulin resistance in women with PCOS. Many women who have started taking Glucorein PCOS have noticed improvements in hirsutism and hair loss because of this active ingredient.
If you are UK based, a good deal for N-acetyl Cysteine (NAC) can be found here.
I would also recommend you to use Khadi Ayurvedic Hair Growth Oil – Rosemary & Henna (Paraben Free) Hair Oil to help your baby hair grow faster. If you are UK based, a good deal can be found here.