When we fight with our body's defence mechanism that is our immune system, or when our immune system becomes hampered, there is nothing that can't happen. Covid 19 the global pandemic is doing all the nuisances as much as it can...
The physical, mental and emotional stress, they go hand in hand in case of Covid 19 eventually lead to development of "Telogen Effluvium", a type of hair fall. Good aspect is it’s reversible.
How often it occurs in larger population is currently unknown.
Hair typically falls out in large chumps, often while brushing or showering.
2. Why and how does it happen:
One of the potential triggers for hair fall is an acute illness with fever, stress is another one with or without fever causing such.
When there is a shock to the body system, the body goes into lockdown mode and only focuses on essential functions. Hair growth is not as essential as other functions when it comes to survival from such a disaster. So patients end upin hair shedding.
Hair growth cycle has different phases. Telogen effluvium happens when a stressor causes a large amount of hair to stop growing and enter into the resting (Telogen) phase and hair falls out.
3.What happens here:
Noticeable hair shedding following 2 to 3 months of Covid infection (when mostly patient is covid negative) and can persist upto 6 to 9 months before it stops.
And once it starts to recover, hair doesn’t look voluptuous immediately, as hair grows very slowly, just 0.37 mm daily.
So it may take longer time to have and look the hair as before.
4. Coping with hair loss:
Hair loss is super emotional. Sometimes we shed more tears over hair loss than even more important things.
First and foremost, it needs patience and understanding that hair is coming back and not to worry; no matter how difficult it is.
Focus on developing a healthy lifestyle.
Finding ways to manage stress can be helpful in beginning hair regrowth, eating a nutrient rich diet, regular exercise and avoid smoking.
Is any treatment?
Dermatologist can advice some investigations. Such as Thyroid function test, Vitamin D level, a routine blood picture to rule out other causes also can supplement vitamins, Pro biotics etc if necessary.
Therapies can be tried like PRP(Platelet rich plasma) if hair fall is unmanageable with aforementioned discussions.
Keep faith hair will regrow with time and faith is a medicine too.
Department of Dermatology & Venerology
Dhaka Medical College Hospital
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