Hair Loss After Covid & Tips For Regrowth
Dealing with hair loss at my age was something I never thought I would have to worry about. I have always had naturally thick, strong hair and it was a surprise when I started shedding excessive amounts. This all started about a month after having covid.
I soon realized it was all probably connected after my hairdresser mentioned six other individuals that she had recently seen that had the same problem. Covid puts a major stress load on your body and I was also left with sinus issues and inflammation (I'm planning to do a post about these issues at some point as well). I decided it was time for some research on how to stop this and also ways to encourage new growth.
The information available on hair loss after covid is pretty limited as of this writing, so I decided to use items that I already had on hand, rather than investing more money into products that might not work. I tried to be as consistent as possible with what I outline in this post; there were days where I was only able to do one or two of these things. My advice is to remember it is not all or nothing here and there are many other things that work to promote hair growth...these are just what worked for me.
One of the only things that I purchased was a shampoo and conditioner. I added this combination to my hair routine as way to apply important nutrients directly onto my scalp. Black cumin seed and rosemary are included in the ingredients along with many other herbs that work to support the health of your hair and scalp. Since using this combination, I have noticed that my hair is super soft. This shampoo is on the thin side, so I end up adding in a little bit of my other shampoo before I apply it. I also always go at least two days before hair washing and I let it air dry as much as possible.
My next focus was on minerals. I decided to make an herbal tea that contained herbs known for their high mineral content. These are the ones that I included:
Nettle (leaf & root) – This herb strengthens and supports the whole body. Nettle root has long been known to be used as a tonic for hair growth and both the leaf and root are great sources of minerals, vitamins and amino acids. Because inflammation of the scalp can lead to hair loss, nettle shines here due to its anti-inflammatory properties.
Horsetail - This plant is loaded with nutrients that are beneficial for hair health; including silica, magnesium and potassium. Due to its high levels of silica, it is known to promote hair growth and is also naturally anti-inflammatory.
Holy Basil – Basil is known as a powerful adaptogen. It contains anti-inflammatory and immune boosting properties that can aid in lowering stress levels. I wanted to use fresh holy basil for my tea, so I started growing it in pots indoors to get as many nutrients as I could.
Due to my histamine intolerance, I am not able to consume large amounts of bone broth. I knew I wanted to incorporate it in somehow, as bone broth is high in collagen/gelatin, glycine and many other minerals. I chose to use a meat stock instead, which is very similar to bone broth (it does not simmer as long, so it contains a lower histamine load). I did not go crazy consuming this, but I did get in as much as I could. If I could tolerate it more, I would be drinking it everyday.
I love growing microgreens and sprouts, so this was an easy one for me to include daily. I chose to focus on alfalfa sprouts; I believed that for what I was dealing with, I would get the most nutrients from these little greens. Alfalfa is known to be rich in vitamins and minerals including calcium, magnesium, copper, zinc and selenium.
Magnesium is something that I try to consume everyday, as it has an impact on nearly all of the systems in the body. Dr Norman Shealy states, "Every known illness is associated with a magnesium deficiancy". Whether this is true or not, I do feel it is a mineral that is overlooked and can also have a positive impact on those dealing with all kinds of stressors.
The last mineral that I added was Shilajit. What I came to learn in my research is that Shilajit is a natural source of all the nutrients and minerals needed for hair growth and health. According to MitoLife, “It is a whole food supplement that brings mineral balance to the body in a natural way.”
I included targeted red light therapy to my scalp several times a week. Infrared lights are known to have a host of health benefits and supposedly can penetrate the skin to the base of the hair follicle. After research on this subject, I felt that it could possibly be beneficial to my situation.
Before all of this happened I had been in the process of trying to sell my inversion table. Thankfully, I never got that far as I feel that this was an important tool to have. By using my inversion table I was able to increase blood flow and circulation to my scalp area. According to Hair Loss Geeks, “Forcing your blood to work to get back to your heart means that it is not able to pass as quickly through your head. The blood, therefore, has more time while in your head to deposit its nutrients there. This means that while you are inverting your whole head, including your scalp and brain, get an increase of oxygen.”
My Vitamin D lamp also came in handy, as I choose not to supplement with synthetic forms during the winter months. Studies have shown that lack of Vitamin D can contribute to hair loss, so until I am able to get my Vitamin D from the sun, I will continue to use this lamp.
I felt like my lymphatic system also took a hit from covid and I needed to work on that area. Even though rebounding is not directly tied to hair regrowth, I used it as a building block to get my lymphatic system in working order, as that system is tied to hair health. According to Mind Green Body…” researchers confirmed that stem cells—which are grouped in clusters called niches—are able to encourage one another to stimulate regeneration. And these niches are all interconnected by, you guessed it, the lymphatic system. They discovered that surrounding each niche was an intertwined network of lymphatic capillaries connecting all of the stem cell niches. These hair-follicle stem cells were able to act as an "on-off" switch for drainage, controlling what fluid and cells were in the surrounding area, and ultimately, regeneration across more tissue.”
New hair growth along my hairline has started and I am no longer losing nearly as much hair as I was previously. There are days where I feel like I stuck my finger in a light socket as my hair is sticking up everywhere, but I am not complaining and am happy that this chapter is coming to a close.
Since I started talking about this topic, I have had many woman contact me with the same issues. Some are just starting on this journey and others are in the middle or end of theirs. As I told a woman the other day, covid put a major stress on your body and your hair will more than likely grow back, it just might not be on the timeline that you had hoped for.