Until 2020, no one knew that an invisible virus could cause so much harm, physically and mentally. At the start of it, the people who got infected with the virus recorded increasing body temperature, cold, cough, and breathing issues.
And only when people thought that enduring COVID-19 infection meant withstanding 14 to 21 days of rest and medication, suddenly there more to it. People soon started witnessing a host of other health issues that required immediate attention so that they can get back on the path of recovery.
For instance, many people witnessed obesity and heart discomfort right after recovering from the virus infection. It was primarily because of the initial rest and the fatigue that continued, which made people gain ample weight, and excess weight can cause heart issues.
The people in the United States think the government should take initiatives to reduce obesity. According to MyBiosourcea poll suggested that 37% of people in Montana, 39% in Alaska, and 30% in Arizona think that the government must come up with initiatives to reduce obesity.
However, that is not all. One of the physical symptoms of getting infected by COVID-19 is amplified hair fall or hair loss. Over the last two years dermatologists have witnessed massive complaints regarding hair loss after COVID.
While some people thought it was because of a lack of caring for your hair and not being able to step outside, the medical community soon linked hair fall with COVID. Patients who have suffered from the virus infection have reported hair loss after a month or after three months of getting infected by the virus. And it didn’t just include women.
Even men were facing this issue and are thinking about whether they would regain their previous hair volume.
Understanding the pandemic hair loss – Is it Telogen Effluvium?
The patients who witness hair loss after the COVID-19 infection can notice that they lose hair in clumps when they wash their hair or while combing it. Medically, this is called Telogen Effluvium.
Close to 90% of the hair on the scalp are in the growth phase, which is known as anagen. That aside, about 10% of the hairs are found in the resting phase, known as the telogen. When it comes to the human scalp, the anagen phase will last for over three years.
After that, the hair will transition to telogen, which will last close to 2 to 6 months. Towards the end of the telogen phase, the hair gets shed from the follicles, and it gets replaced by the new anagen hairs. After that, the growth cycle carries on.
When you consider the average count, everyone can shed close to 100 to 150 hairs on a daily basis. However, when a person experiences a stressful event, for instance, the COVID-19 infection, the body can shift prematurely more than the usual chunk of growing the anagen hairs to the resting telogen state.
Other than the usual 10% of the hairs in the shedding and resting phase, close to 50% of the hairs are shedding and resting, which is more than the normal count.
How long will the hair shedding process last?
It is interesting to note that most telogen effluvium cases get over within 3 to 4 months. After that, extra hairs get shifted to the premature telogen phase. According to doctors, it is a characteristic recovery that takes place once during the inciting event, post the virus infection.
Once the period is over, all the hair will gradually return to normal. That aside, the telogen effluvium will not make a person lose out in the hair follicles. It could be that your hair might not grow temporarily, your follicles are present, and the hair will gradually regrow.
There have been cases where patients haven’t noticed that their hair has grown back like before once the shedding has stopped. It is mostly because the way the hair grows back is close to a centimeter each month. It means that if a woman has shoulder-length hair, it can take over two years to regain the length and volume she used before.
However, in some cases, a few patients can witness a chronic telogen effluvium condition, where there is a vast amount of hair shedding even after six months. It can carry on for a few more months and sometimes years. The cause, in most cases, isn’t found. When a patient witnesses this, most people treat the symptoms using medical therapy.
Finally, it is essential to get a dermatologist’s counseling done as that can highlight the causes of the hair loss. At times low immunity due to the COVID-19 infection can reduce the ferritin levels in the body accountable for hair growth. A treatment that includes the correct amount of iron, zinc, and biotin supplementation can help to bring back your hair to its past glory.