How I overcame Hair loss post covid

As a doctor, I’ve always been intrigued by the science behind various health conditions, and I never thought I’d experience a perplexing issue like severe hair loss myself.

In this blog post, I’ll take you through my journey, delving into the roles stress, hormonal imbalances, and mineral deficiencies play in contributing to telogen effluvium. 

We’ll also explore the three stages of hair growth to understand this phenomenon better. So, settle in with a warm cup of matcha tea and begin our journey together.

I will also give you a step by step instructions to prepare and apply my natural remedy for a thick hair growth post covid.

What is Telogen Effluvium?

Hair fall or hair loss after recovering from COVID-19 is a condition known as telogen effluvium. Various factors, including severe illnesses, high fever, emotional stress, and nutritional deficiencies, can trigger this condition. COVID-19 may induce telogen effluvium due to the stress and inflammation it causes in the body.

Here are 5 possible reasons for hair fall post-COVID-19:

  1. Physical stress: COVID-19 can cause significant stress on the body, and this stress can push more hair follicles into the resting phase (telogen phase) of the hair growth cycle. After 2-3 months, these hairs may fall out, leading to noticeable hair loss.
  2. Emotional stress: The emotional stress and anxiety caused by the pandemic, such as concerns about one’s health, job loss, or social isolation, can also contribute to hair loss.
  3. Nutritional deficiencies: A balanced diet is crucial for maintaining healthy hair. If you experienced a loss of appetite or changed eating habits during or after your COVID-19 illness could lead to deficiencies in essential nutrients like iron, zinc, and biotin, resulting in hair loss.
  4. Medications: Some medications used to treat COVID-19, such as antivirals, corticosteroids, or anticoagulants, may have hair loss as a side effect.
  5. Hormonal imbalances: Severe illnesses, such as COVID-19, can disrupt hormonal balance, leading to hair loss.

Reviving a Time-Honored Tradition: My Grandmother’s Secret to Healthy Hair

Ever since I recovered from COVID-19, I couldn’t help but notice that my hair was falling out at an alarming rate. Each time I brushed my hair or ran my fingers through it, I would find strands tangled between my fingers, causing me great distress. I felt uncertain about what was happening, and my once-lush hair now seemed to thin rapidly.

Sitting in my room one day, I remembered a conversation with my grandma years ago. She told how she had struggled with hair loss when she was younger and discovered a remedy passed down through generations in our family. I could almost hear her gentle voice as I recalled the tale and felt a glimmer of hope.

My grandmother explained that the secret to her thick, beautiful hair was a blend of rosemary-infused coconut oil, a recipe she had learned from her grandmother. She had assured me that this natural concoction would help soothe the scalp, strengthen the hair, and ultimately reduce hair fall.

Intrigued and hopeful, I decided to give it a try. I pieced together the process of making the rosemary-infused coconut oil from my memories of my grandmother’s instructions – selecting the freshest rosemary sprigs and gently heating the coconut oil for the perfect infusion. The comforting fragrance that filled my kitchen as I prepared the oil reminded me of my grandmother, and I felt a sense of reassurance that I was on the path to restoring my hair’s health.

Over the next few weeks, I diligently followed the application method she shared. It became a cherished ritual when I felt connected to her and the generations of women in our family who had benefited from this age-old remedy.

Slowly but surely, I started to notice a change. My hair seemed stronger, and I found fewer strands on my hairbrush each day. As the weeks turned into months, my hair continued to improve, and my once-thinning locks began to regain their former thickness and vitality.

rosemary oil preparation for hair loss

Hair loss due to telogen effluvium is usually temporary and resolves within 6-9 months after the triggering event.

Essential Nutrients Depleted Following COVID-19 Recovery

A balanced diet is crucial for maintaining overall health, including hair health. Nutritional deficiencies can negatively impact the hair growth cycle, leading to hair loss.

Here’s a detailed explanation of how some essential nutrients affect hair health and the consequences of their deficiencies:

  • Iron: Iron plays a crucial role in producing red blood cells, which transport oxygen throughout the body, including to the hair follicles. Inadequate iron intake can lead to iron deficiency anemia, disrupting the normal hair growth cycle and causing hair loss. 

Source: Rich sources of iron include red meat, poultry, fish, beans, lentils, tofu, and fortified cereals.

  • Zinc: Zinc is a trace mineral that plays a vital role in hair growth, tissue repair, and maintaining the oil-secreting glands attached to hair follicles. Zinc deficiency can cause hair loss, thinning, and slow hair growth. 

Source: Zinc-rich foods include oysters, red meat, poultry, beans, nuts, and whole grains.

  • Biotin: Biotin, also known as vitamin H, is a water-soluble B vitamin involved in the metabolism of fats, carbohydrates, and proteins. It also helps maintain the health of hair, skin, and nails. Biotin deficiency can lead to hair thinning and hair loss. 

Source: Rich sources of biotin include eggs, dairy products, nuts, seeds, legumes, and sweet potatoes.

  • Vitamin D: Vitamin D plays a role in hair follicle function and the hair growth cycle. Low vitamin D levels have been linked to hair loss and alopecia areata, an autoimmune condition that causes patchy hair loss. 

Source: You can obtain vitamin D through sunlight exposure, eating fatty fish, egg yolks, fortified milk, and supplements.

  • Protein: Hair is primarily composed of keratin, a structural protein. Inadequate protein intake can reduce hair production, resulting in weak, brittle hair and hair loss. 

Source: Good protein sources include lean meats, poultry, fish, dairy products, legumes, and soy.

  • Omega-3 fatty acids: Omega-3 fatty acids play a role in maintaining scalp health and hair elasticity. A deficiency in omega-3 fatty acids can lead to a dry scalp, dandruff, and hair loss. 

Source: Foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids include fatty fish like salmon, mackerel, and sardines, as well as flaxseeds, chia seeds, and walnuts.

Hormonal imbalance leading to hair loss

Severe illnesses, such as COVID-19, can cause significant stress on the body, leading to hormonal imbalances that may result in hair loss. Hormones, including the hair growth cycle, are crucial in the body’s functions. When hormonal levels are disrupted, it can impact the normal growth cycle of hair and lead to hair shedding or thinning.

3 stages of Hair Growth

The hair growth cycle consists of three phases: 

  1. Anagen (growth), 
  2. Catagen (transition), and 
  3. Telogen (resting). 

In a healthy hair growth cycle, most hair follicles are in the anagen phase, while a smaller percentage is in the telogen phase. However, hormonal imbalances can cause a larger number of hair follicles to enter the telogen phase prematurely, leading to an increase in hair shedding, a condition known as telogen effluvium.

Some hormones that can be affected by severe illness and stress include cortisol, thyroid hormones, and sex hormones such as estrogen and testosterone. For instance, cortisol, commonly known as the “stress hormone,” tends to increase during stress and can affect the body’s ability to maintain a normal hormonal balance. Thyroid hormones, which help regulate metabolism and other body functions, can also be disrupted during illness, leading to hair growth imbalances.

In addition, sex hormones such as estrogen and testosterone play a role in hair growth and maintenance. Severe illness can impact the production and balance of these hormones, leading to hair loss or thinning in some individuals.

telogen effluviu for hair loss post covid

Here’s a step-by-step guide to making rosemary-infused coconut oil:

Time needed: 15 hours.

Fresh or dried rosemary sprigs (2-3 tablespoons of dried rosemary or a handful of fresh sprigs)
1 cup of coconut oil (preferably virgin or cold-pressed)

  1. Clean and dry

    If using fresh rosemary, thoroughly wash the sprigs and pat them dry with a clean or paper towel. Ensure no moisture is on the rosemary, as water can cause the oil to spoil.

  2. Prepare the rosemary

    Remove the leaves from the stems if using fresh rosemary. If using dried rosemary, measure out 2-3 tablespoons.

  3. Heat the oil

    In a small saucepan or double boiler, gently heat the coconut oil until it completely melts. Be careful not to overheat the oil.

  4. Add the rosemary

    Once the coconut oil is melted, add the fresh or dried rosemary leaves to the oil, stirring gently to ensure the rosemary is evenly distributed.

  5. Infuse the oil

    Allow the rosemary to infuse in the coconut oil over low heat for 1-3 hours, depending on the desired strength of the infusion.

  6. Stir occasionally to ensure an even infusion.

  7. Be careful not to let the oil get too hot or simmer, as this can damage the beneficial properties of both the rosemary and the coconut oil.

  8. Strain the oil

    After the infusion, remove the saucepan from the heat and let it cool down for a few minutes. Place a fine-mesh strainer or cheesecloth over a clean, dry jar or container, and carefully pour the infused oil through the strainer to remove the rosemary leaves. You can use a spoon to press the rosemary leaves to extract any remaining oil.

  9. Store the oil

    Once the oil has been strained, seal the jar or container with an airtight lid and store it in a cool, dark place, away from direct sunlight. The rosemary-infused coconut oil should last for several months if stored properly.

    How to apply rosemary-infused coconut oil

    • Warm the oil: If your rosemary-infused coconut oil has solidified, scoop out a small amount and warm it between your hands or in a small heat-resistant container in hot water. This will liquefy the oil, making it easier to apply.
    • Detangle your hair: Before applying the oil, gently detangle your hair using a wide-tooth comb or brush. This will make distributing the oil evenly throughout your hair and scalp easier.
    • Section your hair: Divide your hair into manageable sections. This will help ensure the even application of the oil.
    • Apply to the scalp: Gently massage a small amount of rosemary-infused coconut oil into your scalp using your fingertips. Start at the front of your head and work towards the back, massaging in small, circular motions. Focus on covering the entire scalp to encourage circulation and promote hair growth.
    • Apply to your hair: After massaging the oil into your scalp, apply the oil to the length of your hair, focusing on the mid-lengths and ends. This will help condition, strengthen, and add shine to your hair.
    • Comb through: Using a wide-tooth comb, gently comb through your hair to distribute the oil evenly from roots to ends. This will also help remove tangles and ensure your hair and scalp absorb the oil.
    • Leave it in: Allow the rosemary-infused coconut oil to sit on your hair and scalp for at least 30 minutes. You can leave the oil in your hair overnight for a more intensive treatment. Cover your pillow with an old towel or wear a shower cap to prevent staining.
    • Rinse and shampoo: After the desired time, rinse the oil out of your hair with warm water. Follow up with a gentle shampoo to remove any residual oil. You may need to shampoo twice to ensure all the oil is removed. Finally, condition your hair as you normally would.

    In conclusion, understanding the various factors contributing to hair loss, especially post-COVID recovery is essential for promoting hair health and overall well-being.

    Embracing natural remedies and time-honored traditions, like my grandmother’s rosemary-infused coconut oil, can provide a gentle and effective approach to addressing hair loss and fostering wellness.

    As we continue to explore the power of natural healing, it’s vital to remain open-minded and curious about how nature can support our health and well-being. If you want to learn more about natural healing practices and their role in overall wellness, I invite you to subscribe to our blogs. 

    Stay informed about our latest insights, tips, and discoveries as we journey toward a more holistic understanding of health and the incredible potential of nature’s offerings.

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