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Excessive Hair Shedding? Check your Iron!

Excessive Hair Shedding? Check your Iron!

Have you been seeing more hair than usual having out on the bathroom floor? Don’t panic! Dr. Mac lists the probable causes of your excessive hair shedding.

Hair shedding is a very common and natural process that occurs from the scalp on a daily basis. Typically, it is normal to shed up to 150 hairs per day from the hair root within the scalp (with white bulb on the end) with some days being less or more.  However, losing more than this amount is considered abnormal and should be carefully evaluated by your dermatologist.

Potential reasons for excess hair shedding include internal conditions such as thyroid problems, medications, post-pregnancy, and iron-deficiency anemia to name a few. Low iron can be quite common in females in the reproductive range (20-40 yrs) which may be under-diagnosed due to lack of severe symptoms. However, excess hair shedding is one of the first mild signs of iron-deficiency and should definitely be highly considered during a thorough clinical evaluation.

Blood loss of any type over time can lead to low hemoglobin levels which carry iron resulting in an iron-deficiency anemia. As females, we normally have monthly menstrual cycles in which the uterus naturally sheds its inner lining causing bleeding to occur.  Normally, this process can take three to four days, however, if you have any uterine abnormalities or other hormonal conditions, the bleeding can be heavier and last longer. Fibroids, which are very common in African-Americans, are non-cancerous uterine growths ranging from pea size to as large as grapefruits causing more severe bleeding and menstrual symptoms. Eventually, due to the consistent monthly blood loss, your iron stores can become depleted due to inadequate intake of iron. At this point, your body can become symptomatic resulting in fatigue, dizziness, heart palpitations and other symptoms including hair shedding of the telogen hairs (i.e. resting stage of hair growth). You will notice many long hair strands with the white bulb on the end representing hairs from the root which can make you panic.

  1. First, do not panic! Panicking can lead to unnecessary stress which can also cause more hairs to shed. Seek clinical evaluation by your doctor.
  2. Start a multivitamin with iron and eat iron-rich foods such as broccoli and red meats in an effort to start restoring your levels if in fact low iron is the problem. Your doctor may prescribe a more potent iron supplement that will work faster.
  3. Limit shampooing, combing, brushing while hair is actively shedding. Once iron levels begin to rise, shedding decreases to its normal daily amount within 1-2 months.
  4. Avoid all hair chemicals (relaxers, dyes, etc.) to reduce hormone disrupting chemicals that can result if get inside scalp bloodstream.

Internal hair follicle support with BellaNutri®, an all-natural supplement that provides special nutrients namely marine proteins and collagen to work inside body to help revive and stimulate your hair roots. The shedding will decrease and re-stimulate faster hair growth within a few weeks. As you continue the nutrients, your hair will grow longer, thicker, stronger and healthier even filling in thin or bald areas (as long as not scarred). BellaNutri® can be safely used in combination with prescribed iron or other medications needed to treat the condition.  www.bellanutri.com

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