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Photo: Instagram Fashion blogger Nadia Bartel, wife of Australian Football League star Jimmy Ba...

Can Breastfeeding Really Cause Your Hair to Fall Out?

By 18:45:00

Photo: Instagram

Fashion blogger Nadia Bartel, wife of Australian Football League star Jimmy Bartel, showed off a picture of her freshly-cut hair on Instagram on Wednesday. However, the mother to 6-month-old Aston said in her photo caption, she has been “losing all her hair from feeding.”

The remark caused a storm of supportive, been-there comments on Bartel’s snap. “I lost some of mine too while breastfeeding,” one read. “Don’t worry it grows back and you won’t even notice the loss, apart from on your brush.” Another mom wrote, “I thought that I would have no hair left when it was falling out in chunks.” Yikes.  

So, you might be wondering: Does breastfeeding really cause your hair to fall out?

If you’re a new or expectant mom, don’t get too concerned. We grabbed Noel Strong, MD, an assistant professor of obstetrics, gynecology and reproductive science at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, to set the record straight about those extra postpartum strands on your hairbrush.

“It’s a totally normal effect, post-pregnancy, and actually has nothing to do with breastfeeding,” Strong tells Yahoo Beauty. “There are two phases of hair growth, anagen phase and telogen phase. During pregnancy, while hormones are high, your hair growth slows progression. This is why mothers have such a pregnancy ‘glow’ and a thick, full head of hair.”

Enjoy it, moms-to-be: That luxurious ‘do won’t last forever. Strong says there’s a balancing act that comes into play when you give birth; those strands that were hanging out in anagen phase suddenly transition to telogen phase all at once. “You experience a drop in hormones after pregnancy, which causes those hairs to fall out rapidly,” she explains.

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