Some women who were prescribed prenatal vitamins have observed that the thickness of their hair along with the length had improved over a certain period. There have been a couple of studies which were carried out to find out the link between prenatal vitamins and hair growth.
Out of them, some speak in favor of prenatal vitamins, while others are inconclusive. However, there are certain reasons due to which prenatal vitamins promote hair growth and arrest hair fall.
Prenatal Vitamins - Hair Growth
People who face problems with hair growth always ask if prenatal vitamins are good for hair growth. Some studies have shown that prenatal vitamins and hair growth indeed go hand in hand and these vitamins have positive effects on hair growth.
Prenatal vitamins contain large amounts of folic acid, iron and calcium, which are essential for a mother-to-be and the growing fetus. These vitamins are similar to any other multivitamin, it's just that the quantity of folic acid and iron is higher in prenatal vitamins as compared to other multivitamins.
Many studies have shown that folic acid aids hair growth. It also helps in regenerating cells which have died up a while ago. Iron supplements in prenatal vitamins helps in formation of new cells. It also helps in producing new blood to supply nutrients and oxygen to all parts of the body.
The vitamin B in folic acid accelerates growth of fresh cells, which replace the old cells. Calcium helps in making bones stronger and maintaining a healthy scalp. Hence, it is seen that all the contents of these prenatal vitamins are beneficial for general good health and well-being.
Often hair loss is caused due to mineral and vitamin deficiencies. Most prenatal vitamins also contain a healthy quantity of minerals, which boost hair growth. Taking prenatal vitamin helps in reducing vitamin deficiencies, which in turn helps in hair growth and health of hair.
Prenatal vitamins have a positive effect on the estrogen level, which helps arrest hair loss to a certain extent. To be more precise, it creates a conducive environment for hair growth. Often, hair in the shedding phase is also protected against fall and continues to grow. New cells are developed and hair growth is stimulated due to the hormone estrogen.
According to other studies, hair growth that occurs during pregnancy is not due to prenatal vitamins. It is due to the hormones released during pregnancy. Estrogen is produced many times more than normal in pregnant women.
When the levels of estrogen are high, it acts as a conducive environment for hair growth, as hair gets locked in the growing phase, which allows hair to grow longer. There are three phases in the hair growth cycle. These three phases are growing, resting and shedding. Each and every hair follicle has to go through all three phases.
At any point of time, about 90 percent of the hair follicle are in the growing phase. The growing phase is genetically determined, and is anywhere between two to six years. Therefore, hair growth rate depends on how many years of growing phases you have.
For example, if a person has a 6-year growing phase, the hair will grow thrice longer than a person who has a 2-year growing phase. During pregnancy, due to hormone surge, hair that needs to be shed gets locked in the growing phase, thus, it looks longer and more wholesome during pregnancy. It is not totally due to the prenatal vitamins which are consumed.
Prenatal Vitamin - Side Effects
Although prenatal vitamins are known to have positive effects, they have certain side effects as well. These vitamins contain a high amount of iron in them. Excess iron can cause constipation, stomach upset, as well as iron poisoning.
Hence, it is always advisable to take prenatal vitamins for hair growth only after it is prescribed by a physician. If they are prescribed by a physician, it is recommended that you increase water consumption when you are taking the vitamins, to minimize the chances of side effects.
Making fiber an integral part of your diet is also necessary so that side effects are minimized. Some people are also known to suffer from issues like nausea, vomiting, and headache due to excessive intake of these vitamins.
Before concluding on prenatal vitamins and hair growth we would like to suggest that instead of wasting time in finding out if prenatal vitamins help hair growth, it would be better to incorporate some healthy eating habits.
Tobacco and alcohol should be eliminated and consumption of water, green leafy vegetables, and fruits should be increased, which will help a great deal than what prenatal vitamins for hair growth can. A diet rich in proteins is also recommended for hair growth. Exercise is the other change which needs to be brought about in our daily lifestyle.
It is also important to keep your stress levels at a minimum, as high stress levels cause hair thinning. At the same time, hair care is important, hence buy good quality hair care products and check whether the particular hair product will suit your hair. If you use harmful products, they can also cause hair loss and the thinning of hair.