Stop and Reverse Birth Control Hair Loss

Edited by Donna, Eng, Doug Collins

If you are taking birth control pills, hormone injections, progestin implants, using the skin patch or using the vaginal ring you could be experiencing hair loss. These forms of hormonal birth control contain hormones that can disrupt the delicate balance of the immune, endocrine and reproductive systems. In some women, the hair loss occurs when they stop taking the pill. With others, hair loss is experienced three to seven months after they stop taking it. Either way, the hair loss is caused by an excess of androgenic activity that causes hair follicles to shrink, resulting in female pattern baldness. \

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Hormonal Birth Control Methods That Cause Hair Loss

Hormonal birth that can cause hair loss include:

  1. 1
    Hormonal injections.
    Hormone shots are injected directly into the upper arm or buttocks to prevent ovulation.
    Some forms of hormonal birth control are delivered by injection.
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  2. 2
    Oral contraceptives.
    Taken by mouth, these are pills that suppress ovulation. The female body is dosed daily for 24 days of month with excess amounts of the hormones estrogen or progestin or both estrogen or progestin (depending on the brand of pill that you are prescribed.)
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  3. 3
    Progestin implants.
    Tooth-pick sized rods that are implanted surgically on the underside of the upper arm just beneath the skin. The rods suppress a continuous dose of progestin, which in turn prevents ovulation.
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  4. 4
    The skin patch.
    This is a clear plastic patch that is placed on your buttocks, upper arm or shoulder. The patch constantly releases sustained doses both progestin and estrogen into the body to suppress ovulation.
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  5. 5
    The vaginal ring.
    This is a two-inch flexible ring that is placed manually into the vagina and that continuously releases the hormones progestin and estrogen to suppress ovulation.
    The vaginal ring is infused with hormones to prevent ovulation, but although it is an effective birth control device it can cause hair loss.
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How to Stop and Reverse Hair Loss Caused By Hormonal Birth Control

  1. 1
    One of the best ways to avoid hormonal hair loss is to immediately cease the use of hormonal forms of birth control.
    Hormonal birth control methods work through the suppression of the production of estrogen and/or progestin in the body. This means avoiding hormonal injections, oral contraceptives, progestin implants, the birth control skin patch and the vaginal ring as described above in the section Hormonal Birth Control Methods That Cause Hair Loss
    Alopecia hair loss pattern at the top of the head; a possible consequence of taking birth control.
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  2. 2
    If there is female pattern baldness in your family, don't take oral contraceptives or use hormonal forms of birth control Hair loss in women is related to an inherited hypersensitivity to hormonal changes.
    It is best to choose a non-hormonal form of birth control to avoid problems. These options include using condoms, a cervical cap, the diaphragm, the IUD and the Lea birth control device. Refer to the section below, Non-Hormonal Birth Control Options That Stop Hair Loss below to see a complete list of ways to prevent pregnancy without risking baldness.
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  3. 3
    Ask your doctor for a prescription for pills with a low androgen index.
    This is no guarantee of stopping hair loss, but it does reduce your risk of massive or permanent hair loss. These pills are also a little less effective at preventing pregnancy.
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  4. 4
    Eating a healthy, high-protein diet may help regrow your hair.
    Androgenic hair loss is very hard to fight because it is caused by hormonal disruption. Stopping use of the hormonal-disrupting birth control method is the answer. However you may be able to encourage your hair to grow in healthier by eating foods high in protein, iron, biotin and the B vitamins such as eggs, steak,, salmon, nuts and leafy greens.
    Poached eggs are one of the best foods to eat if you are trying to regrow your hair.
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  5. 5
    Avoid subjecting your hair to traction damage.
    Hair follicles shrink during the use of hormonal birth control methods and hair strands become thinner. Don't stress your delicate hair follicles further by tying your hair tightly in a ponytail or clip or by tugging on it with a curling iron or brushes. Wear your hair loosely until it grows back.
    Avoid stressing your hair with tight braids if you are on hormonal birth control to avoid damaging fragile hair roots further.
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  6. 6
    Avoid all chemical processing until your hair grows back.
    It is a bad idea to damage your hair follicles further by using hair straightening chemicals or dyes on your scalp. Let your hair grow in naturally and give your scalp a rest to prevent permanent hair loss.
    Wear your hair naturally while on birth control to prevent hair loss.
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Non- Hormonal Birth Control Options That Stop Hair Loss

Non-hormonal forms of birth control that do not cause include:

  • The cervical cap, which is a silicone dome that fits tightly against the cervix and prevents sperm from entering the uterus
  • The contraceptive sponge which is a s disposable sponge placed in the uterus that contains spermicide
  • The diaphragm, which is a latex dome that is used in conjunction with spermicide to prevent sperm from reaching the uterus
  • The female condom which is a polyurethane sheath, that resembles a plastic baggie that is inserted in the vagina and catches the sperm before it can enter the vagina
  • Intrauterine Contraceptive Device (The Copper IUD), which uses copper wire to change the bio-chemistry of the uterus so that it kills sperm
  • The Lea Contraceptive which is a flexible silicone deice that is coated with spermicide and placed inside of the cervix to prevent pregnancy
  • Spermicide, which contains a sperm-killing chemical called nononynol-9 and comes in the form of a cream, gel, foam, suppository or clear film that is applied inside of the vagina.

Donna West diaphragm.jpg

Tips And Tricks

  • The birth control pill is sometimes prescribed for a type of hair loss called female pattern baldness (alopecia), but only in women who have not been on the pill before and have no genetic predisposition towards hair loss
  • Most women who stop using hormonal birth control find that their hair grows back within a year.
  • If you have problems with any of these steps, ask a question for more help, or post in the comments section below.


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Article Info

Categories : Hair Loss

Recent edits by: Eng, Donna

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