If you’ve noticed your hair falls out in the fall more than other months, you’re experiencing seasonal shedding. Seasonal shedding is a real thing across the globe. Don't worry, you’re not alone as Google searches for “hair loss“ spike as summer fades to autumn. You can see for yourself using the Google Trends tool found here.
Fortunately there is nothing to worry about as this is just part of the natural hair cycle, and there are things you can do to minimize the amount of your hair falling out in autumn. So let's look at the potential causes and go over some solutions you can try.
The first reason hair falls out more often in the fall is the natural human hair growth cycle. At any point in time, between 10% and 15% of your hairs are in the 3rd phase called “telogen” where they’re “resting“ inside the follicle and are more likely to fall out or get pulled out by a brush, comb, towel, etc. The percentage of telogen hairs peaks over the summer and into fall, which means your usual grooming routine will pull out more hairs than usual. That’s nothing to worry about though because once the telogen hair is out of the follicle, it can start growing a new one!
The next reason you might see more shedding than usual is because of all the sun and fun you get over the summer. The progressive UV damage along with the repeated swelling from higher humidity leads to faster radical damage and protein loss. This causes more of your hairs to break come fall. Thankfully you don’t have to skip summer soccer league to save your hair. Instead, try adjusting your diet (like eating more foods rich in things like vitamin C, a natural antioxidant), using an anti-humidity spray, or using coconut oil which penetrates the hair shaft and helps fight off protein loss (read more here).
The extra summer sun also causes your body to produce less melatonin, which is a natural antioxidant and anti-inflammatory that is important for hair growth. And as the seasons change, you might see more hair loss from vitamin D deficiency because of the lower amount of sun you're taking in. You can get both melatonin and vitamin D supplements over-the-counter, or you can eat more foods rich in both nutrients like eggs and fish.
According to this article at Yale, the dry air as you go from summer to autumn can also cause hair and scalp problems. If your scalp becomes dry, it can also become itchy. The scratching can cause you to rip your hair out, literally. And dry hair is more prone to breakage which can lead to the appearance of shedding as you scratch. Keep your hair and scalp moisturized if you live in an area where the autumn air is dry, and begin using products to keep your hair and scalp moisturized as the seasons change.And while it is always good to be gentle with your hair, like using proper blow drying technique instead of toweling, and knowing how often to wash your hair, it doesn’t hurt to be extra gentle so you can help to reduce the shedding as autumn approaches. If you found this post helpful, subscribe to the TELETIMES blog below.