Written by the UPGUYS Editorial Team
Published on May 05, 2022
One-quarter of all Canadians claim that they feel stressed most days. Are you one of them?
Stress can cause serious health issues when left unchecked. It can impact your mental health, your sleep, and more. Did you know that it can also impact your hair?
It's true. Stress really can make your hair fall out. But why does it happen? Is there treatment for stress-related hair loss? Does hair grow back after you lost it due to stress?
We're here to answer those questions and more. In this article, we will discuss:
Many people think that the idea of stress "turning your hair grey" or causing it to fall out is just a joke, but that isn't true. Stress can legitimately cause you to lose some of your hair, and it's more common than you think.
It's called telogen effluvium. It's the most common type of "diffuse hair loss."
When your hair grows, it grows in three stages. Those three stages are:
The telogen phase normally lasts for five to six weeks. After this phase, it's normal for your hair to fall. Most people don't notice when the telogen phase ends because it's just normal hair loss.
Telogen effluvium happens when the body is shocked by some kind of stressor. That stressor sends more hair into the telogen phase and keeps them there for longer periods of time. This may be due to corticosterone.
After this, the hair sheds all at once. Because the hair was shocked out of the anagen phase and into the telogen phase, there's not as much growth to make up for the loss.
It's difficult to stop hair loss from stress before it occurs because most people don't know that it's happening. There are few signs of telogen effluvium before the hair fall starts.
Common stressors that can cause hair loss include:
While you can't stop hair loss due to stress before it occurs, you'll be happy to know that in most cases, it will stop on its own. Telogen effluvium tends to become apparent after 3 months, but it will stop soon after the stressor is removed.
So can hair loss from stress be reversed? In most cases, yes.
So how can you kickstart the regrowth of hair? In some cases, it's easier than you'd think. Many people find that just returning to their normal lifestyle without the stressor is enough to get themselves back on track.
Here are a few tips for how to treat hair loss due to stress.
If you're trying to figure out how to reverse hair loss from stress, supplements might be the first place that you look. Supplements won't always be effective, but they're relatively harmless and not difficult to access. However, it's a good idea to talk to your doctor before adding new supplements to your diet.
Talk to your doctor first to see which supplements are best to stop your hair loss.
Research is mixed on whether or not taking vitamins will help with hair growth, but many people report that b12 is effective for hair and nails. Others choose to take biotin.
Folic acid and zinc may also be effective, but again, this is all speculative. Be wary of vitamin complexes that claim to be for stress hair loss, as many of them are not scientifically backed.
Short of vitamin deficiencies, it's unclear as to how beneficial supplements will be.
Lifestyle changes might be your best bet when it comes to trying to regrow hair loss due to stress. When you're trying to figure out how to combat stress hair loss, the first step is trying to omit stress. So hair loss and stress: Will it grow back when you calm down? Maybe.
When the stress goes away, your hair loss should slow down (or stop entirely). This can be complicated if the stress that you're dealing with is unavoidable (like the stress from a newborn, for example), but you should take steps to calm down.
Lifestyle changes might be your best bet when it comes to trying to regrow hair loss due to stress.
Try to get enough exercise. Exercise stimulates blood flow (which may help with hair growth) and causes your body to release endorphins, which combat stress.
Take time for self-care. Make sure that you're devoting time to relaxing so you can reduce your cortisol levels.
You also need to make sure that you're getting enough sleep. Sleeplessness can increase your cortisol levels.
There aren't many things you can adjust about your diet to influence stress-induced hair loss regrowth, but it's always in your best interest to eat well. As with the supplements, there's not a lot of research about how nutrients and vitamins from food impact your hair growth.
Look for foods that are high in protein. If your body doesn't have enough protein to support more important functions, it may not allocate as much to hair growth. L-lysine, an amino acid from certain protein sources, may also be good for hair growth.
Foods that are high in omega fatty acids may also be good for your hair.
Overall, your primary dietary goal should be to eat plenty of nutritious foods, so your body has the energy to re-build after hair loss.
Read more: The 20 Best Foods For Hair Growth
If you're looking for how to cure hair loss from stress through medical treatments or medications, you may have some options. It's important to talk to a doctor about specific medications that can treat hair loss.
If you're getting stressed about how to stop hair loss due to stress, make sure that you seek out specific stress-related hair loss treatments. Remember that telogen effluvium is temporary, so you won't be looking for the same treatments that are good for things like male-pattern baldness.
So does hair grow back after stress? As long as stress was the only cause of your hair loss, there's a good chance that your hair will start filling in again after the stressor is gone.
Losing your hair is stressful in and of itself, so your top priority should be to stay calm.
There are treatments for hair loss from stress, but keep the other solutions in mind. You can have a full head of healthy hair again. See a doctor if the more "natural" treatments aren't effective for you.
At UPGUYS, we have solutions for hair loss and more. Get a quick consult today to get started.