Pregnancy represents an important period of time during your life when you have to make lots of choices. You have to give up those demanding 5-mile runs, but that shouldn`t be too hard. You`ll need to give up those tasteful Italian combos at your favorite restaurant; a bit harder, but you know you`ll have to do it. However, these aren`t that hard to accomplish, because they are on the radar of every expecting mother and they have all become almost common knowledge by now. But there are other choices that you need to take into account during pregnancy that are less obvious – like giving up your shampoo or not.
Shampoo stays in contact with our head`s scalp only for about a half of minute or so before washing it off, so it cannot be dangerous. Or, at least that`s how we think! Well, things stay a bit different than we think.
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Hair typically grows in 3 different phases:
- Active growth.
During these particular phases, people normally shed 100 hairs each day. During pregnancy, the additional hormones “running” throughout your body shift the hair cycle. The hair either grows or stays on the head, but does not shed. This represents the reason for which the hair now seems thicker or longer than normally. – Learn more!
There are studies that suggest that hair strands in fact thickens while expecting a child. Dr. Paradi Mirmirani, a well known dermatologist from Kaiser Permanente Vallejo Medical Center from the United States says: “The hair diameter generally increases. We measured the diameter of the hair in the 3rd trimester of pregnancy and after birth, and it is most certainly thicker while expecting a baby.”
At times, the hair of a pregnant woman or a new mother becomes more or less curly. The entire mechanism of how things work regarding this isn`t yet understood completely. However, most specialists tend to think it`s hormone related.
Is It Safe To Use Shampoo during Pregnancy?
The sodium lauryl sulfate ingredient, which is a surfactant frequently encountered in shampoos, has been proven to have some kind of a relation with birth defects in animals. Keep in mind that sodium laureth sulfate, which sounds rather similar, has been shown to be safe. Other possible harmful ingredients from which pregnant women should guard themselves include synthetic fragrances, parabens, a preservative known as methylisothiazolinone, and rosemary, which might contain phthalates.
Phthalates can change the levels of hormones, and as scientific studies have proven, methylisothiazolinone has inhibited the growth of nerve cells in rats. However, the manner in which these particular chemical substances affect the baby (because scientists don`t test these substances on expecting mothers) aren`t known yet. Additionally, hair follicles provide “doors” in the skin, so these chemicals can reach a pregnant woman`s body rather easily.
The real issue is that these substances are found quite frequently in shampoos. So, shampooing while pregnant isn`t recommended to be done more often than required. A shampoo per week, and perhaps a few other showers that don`t include shampoos, is quite enough. When choosing to use balsam, you should avoid applying it to the hair roots, but rather only to the hair ends.
If you are interested in a deeper application, you should make a mask of olive oil and simple yoghurt. The result will be a smooth hair without using any chemical substances.
Shampoos Safe to Use While Pregnant
Before starting to check out the back of every shampoo you find on the aisle, here are a few recommendations that may help.
Experts suggest giving a try to John Masters Organics Bare Shampoo, as it does not contain any harmful chemical substances. It`s also infused with jojoba and chamomile, and is fragrance-free.
Another good choice in terms of shampoos is Nine Naturals Oh Baby Shampoo, which contains soothing ingredients, such as olive oil and Aloe Vera, and is totally safe.
Last but not least, Molton Brown Cassia Energy Hair & Body Wash is a great choice as it contains very few ingredients (cassia, lemon, calcium oxide and rosemary oil) and has a double use – hair and body.
Hair Maintenance during Pregnancy
Nutrition plays a crucial role for a woman during pregnancy. Experts recommend following a diet rich in calcium, vitamins and minerals, especially one that contain lots of fruits and vegetables. When other cravings occur, it`s normal for the woman not to abstain herself and eat what she wants, as long as it`s in moderation.
It`s good to try and avoid those combs that agitate your hair when it`s wet or fragile.
During pregnancy, you should take the following into consideration when it comes to hair maintenance:
- Avoid any hairdressing products with an intense heat.
- Avoid tightened hairstyles; they do nothing else than trim the hair, which will eventually start falling.
- Apply natural-based masks, like coconut or castor oil, as it will greatly aid to your hair hydration.
- Avoid carbonated juices as much as possible.
- Aim for foods rich in vitamins, potassium and calcium.
- Get enough relaxation.
- Avoid hair dryers.
- Use fortifying shampoos or balsams that contain silicon and biotin.
After giving birth, you may return to your old hair maintenance routine without any worry. Even if your hair has undergone a few changes, if you`ll take care of it properly, it will return to normal in no time.