If there is anything that these past couple years have taught us, it's that life will always be this unpredictable force whose bidding we'll never be able to avoid. Even planning with the utmost care doesn’t guarantee that it will happen. COVID altered the course for all of our lives. For those of you that took precautions and obtained the COVID vaccine, you may be wondering if there are any side effects that accompany the vaccine - especially if it comes to hair loss. So in today's blog, we'll be answering whether or not the COVID vaccine contributes or can cause of hair loss.
Findings Are Inconclusive
It shouldn't come as a surprise to learn that not much research has been done to study the COVID vaccine and how it can effect hair loss. A study conducted late 2021 observed subjects on when they took the vaccine, when they saw their hair fall out, and what specifically happened to their hair. However, this study should be taken with a grain of salt, as it's one of the only ones of its kind. Many of the subjects in the study already had a family history of alopecia, and the vaccine only "activated" the progression of hair loss. Some subjects didn't have any family members who suffered with alopecia, but you could also attribute their hair loss to stress of some kind. The study was also completed with 9 participants, and these may also represent extreme cases.
So can the vaccine cause hair loss? The answer: it's inconclusive.
Stress Could Be The Reason Why You're Losing Hair After Covid Vaccine
Without a doubt, we've all be stressed in some way in regards to COVID and how it's effected the world. We've all be impacted in some way, and depending on how our lives have been altered by COVID, our could suffer as of result. There is actually a form of hair loss that stems from stress, telogen effluviam. When the body experiences stress, it forces hair in the anagen phase to skip all the way to the final resting phase prematurely. The hair that stopped growing then sheds in mass, causing patches of hair loss all over the scalp. There is also a delay in the next phase, so it can seem as if your hair sheds and then nothing grows - all from stress.
Ever since the rise of COVID and the subsequent lockdowns, the amount of telogen effluvium cases has risen. Especially in predominately minority communities, these cases have spiked tremendously. The uncertainty that plagues these communities creates a wildfire of hair loss cases. It isn't conclusive if these reported cases are before or after the COVID vaccine has been administered, but the fact still stands that stress from life-changing events can lead to shedding hair - and potentially worse.
Post Covid Vaccine: Symptoms of Telogen Effluvian
COVID and its vaccine could potentially induce telogen effluvian. More so the virus itself than the vaccine, the more severe COVID is on someone's body, the worse the effects of telogen effluvian can be. Acquiring some form of hair loss after getting the vaccine could occur, but the important thing to note is that the vaccine is doing a job, and a part of that job may cause some of your hair to fall out. Your hair should regrow after a while, but if It doesn’t, it'd be wise to speak with a professional.
Can I Regrow My Har After Experiencing Telogen Effluvian?
You can recover from losing your hair due to telogen effluvian by reducing the amount of stress you intake and to practice healthy hair habits. Some activities you can try to upkeep a healthy hair and scalp is to massage it daily, use shampoos and conditioners that were formulated to help your hair and use essential oils to clean and moisturize your scalp.
When Should I Expect to Have My Hair Back?
Whether you've gotten telogen effluvium from anything related to COVID, you could expect your hair to grow back within 3-6 months with proper care taken to maximize any growth that happens. However, everyone's circumstances are different, so although we mention the 3-6 month time frame, you could see growth happen anytime within the year, or no growth at all. As mentioned, if you are concerned with the rate of growth, we recommend seeking professional assistance.
Post Covid Hair Loss Remedy
Natural hair restoration from telogen effluvian can be achieved in different ways.
Massaging Your Scalp
When massaging the scalp, your hands loosen the skin and even some of the larger particles of buildup that may be blocking the hair follicle. Massaging the scalp can also help the blood flow, so that new nutrients can be delivered to the hair follicles so that they can create new healthier hair.
Essential oils work well with combines use with massaging your scalp. The variety of essential oils in the market means that there are many different ways that your scalp can feel rejuvenated. From peppermint oils increasing blood flow, to the fatty acid rich coconut oil, treat your scalp to natural remedies.
Eating the Right Foods
Sustaining healthier hair doesn't stop with just using external remedies like oils and massages. Maintaining a diet that's filled with hair follicle-friendly vitamins and minerals that can help promote not just faster growth, but hair that's fuller and stronger. Foods like eggs and fish that are high in protein are excellent in helping with the structure of hair. Foods that are high in vitamins A-E and minerals like iron and zinc are excellent for the hair follicles.
Shampoos and Conditioners
Shampoo and conditioners are great ways to apply vitamins and minerals to the hair and scalp. There are also shampoos and conditioners on the market that contain essential oils in them. This is a convenient and easy way to moisturize, strengthen, and cleanse your hair and scalp - all in one product.
Observe Taking Less Stress
Might be a little easier said than done, but taking steps to reduce the amount of stress you intake could prevent hair loss. The amount of hair follicles that prematurely transition between the phases only increases when the body experiences more stress. Activities like yoga are excellent for reducing stress, but any other activities that you enjoy doing can actually lead to overall healthier hair growth.
Reducing the habits that lead to an unhealthy lifestyle with undoubtedly lead to hair growth. Habits like smoking and drinking cause both physical and mental harm to the body. Smoking cigarettes can lead to oxidative stress, which isn't ideal for the hair follicles to grow new hair. Excessive drinking can dehydrate the scalp, which will hinder any new growth.
The best remedies always seem to be the simplest. This classic drink is famous for its medicinal wonders. Green tea has shown to reduce DHT that can lead to less hair growing. Drinking green tea can also help reduce the amount of dandruff your hair accumulates, leading to cleaner hair.
Restore Your Hair After Covid Vaccine
Stressed about where to go next? At Capillus, we can help provide some direction with the CapillusOne. A laser therapy cap designed to help promote hair growth using 112 FDA-cleared medical grade lasers in just 6 minutes a day. Especially if used together with the natural hair growth remedies listed above, you may start to see real results within 3-6 months.