Why the 2nd shed occurs after minoxidil use
You’ve probably read about the initial dread shed which is the immediate release of hairs. When your body gets introduced to minoxidil, it’s a form of a medical shock to your body. Your body is being introduced to a vasodilator that’s regularly applied. This causes a shock which causes a Telogen Effluvium.
What is Telogen Effluvium?
Telogen Effluvium is in short when a lot of your hair goes into Telogen state. That’s the state where your hair follicles go to sleep and fall out within 2-4 months.
Shocking events that trigger Telogen effluvium include
- Severe physical stress (illness, fever)
- Severe psychological stress (depression, anxiety)
- Severe weight loss
- Change in diet
- Abrupt hormonal changes, including those associated with childbirth and menopause
- Vitamin deficiency
- Iron deficiency
- Hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism
In your case, the minoxidil caused a shock to your body.
Will my hair return after a minoxidil shed?
If minoxidil is the only reason why the telogen effluvium was triggered, your hair should return. The 2nd shed and your body taking a while to adjust is the reason why many doctors or dermatologists suggest trying the solution for a year before judging it. Hair cycles are time consuming and painful to go through when you’re watching your scalp and the shower drain / pillows / floor everyday.
Telogen Effluvium lasts around 6 months and people roughly take 1 month to grow 1cm of hair so it may be several months before you start getting your density back.
What can I do to stop the minoxidil shed?
Once the minoxidil shed starts, there’s nothing that can be done other than to sit through it. Many patients of telogen effluvium cannot do anything to reverse it. You just have to live it out until your new hairs grow out. What you can do naturally to help your scalp in general
- Sleep well. 7-8 hours
- Reduce stress
- Eat well. Iron, magnesium, omega-3, proteins
- Exercise lightly to increase blood flow
- Clean – Use a good shampoo to keep your scalp clean