What is the Link Between Thyroid Issues and Hair Loss?
Thyroid problems are prevalent in the UK. The British Thyroid Foundation asserts that an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism) is more common than an overactive thyroid (hyperthyroidism). Both conditions have their own set of symptoms that mainly contrast each other.
An underactive thyroid can lead to weight gain and feeling cold, and an overactive thyroid can lead to weight loss and heat intolerance. However, both conditions can, unfortunately, lead to problems with your hair, including thinning and thyroid hair loss. Here we're looking more closely at the link between your thyroid and hair loss, and how you care for your hair can make a difference to your condition's impact.
Could My Hair Loss be Linked to Thyroid Problems?
Most common thyroid conditions are considered autoimmune disorders and can result in hair damage and hair loss. Hashimoto's thyroiditis is the most common form of an underactive thyroid problem. Whereas Grave's Disease is the most common for an overactive thyroid.
While your hair loss could be linked to your thyroid problem, it isn't always the case, especially as having one autoimmune disorder can result in others developing, which have a close connection with hair loss.
If you have a thyroid disorder, you may also develop coeliac disease, which is associated with iron deficiency, a common cause of hair loss. Similarly, you could also develop alopecia areata, a skin condition which causes the hair to fall out. Speaking to your medical team is vital for fully understanding your symptoms and diagnosing your hair loss.
What Does Thyroid Hair Loss Look Like?
Severe or prolonged underactive or overactive thyroid problems can lead to hair loss. With both conditions, you may find the hair loss is diffuse, meaning it isn't concentrated in a single area and impacts your entire head of hair. People often find their hair appears thinner and sparser, or experience more fall out in the shower or on the hairbrush.
Underactive Thyroid & Hair Loss
With an underactive thyroid, hair loss is not usually limited to the head. People find they lose hair from under their arms and even their eyebrows. Unfortunately, one of the main treatments for an underactive thyroid, levothyroxine, can contribute to hair loss, but this is usually not long-term and will start to grow back when the condition is managed.
Overactive Thyroid & Hair Loss
People with hyperthyroidism usually experience thinning of their hair. The overproduction of the thyroid hormone causes the hair to become very fine, and you may also find your hair particularly thin all over the scalp.
Diagnosing Hair Loss from Thyroid Conditions
Ascertaining whether your hair loss is thyroid-related can be difficult, especially if you live with other health conditions. Your GP should be able to provide some advice and guidance. You may also want to bring it up with your endocrinologist or during any specialist hormone-related appointments. Your specialist may be able to assess whether your hair loss is specifically linked to your thyroid problem.
How Long Does Hair Loss due to Thyroid Problems last?
If your hair becomes thin or begins to fall out, it's easy to worry and panic that you’ll lose all your hair. However, with thyroid-related hair problems, almost all hair loss can be reversed. Thyroid hair loss should stop once you have found the right treatment plan for your condition. You can also add to the impact of your medication with a nutrient-rich diet and supplementation to give your body the best chance of recovery. Thyroid hair loss regrowth can take time, but most people do see hair regrowth in 3-6 months after being on the right treatment.
Most Common Thyroid Hair Loss Treatments
Finding the right combination of treatments can help to regulate your thyroid condition and therefore reverse the impact of thyroid hair loss to get your hair back to its best. Thyroid hair loss treatment may come partly from your regular thyroid medication as well as other natural sources.
Thyroid Medication & Treatment Plans
The most common form of treatment for an overactive thyroid is medicines called thionamides. They help stop your thyroid from producing excess hormones. The most common forms include carbimazole and propylthiouracil. Patients usually need to take the medication regularly for at least two months before seeing any benefits.
As already mentioned, patients with an underactive thyroid are usually prescribed hormone replacement tablets called levothyroxine. Levothyroxine can contribute to hair loss, but it will be necessary to help stabilise your hormone levels, at least in the short term. Other natural steps can be taken to help reduce your hair loss while you are on this medication.
Iodine is a vital element necessary for a fully functional thyroid and in producing the thyroid's hormones, which is why it’s often recommended to people suffering from thyroid conditions. However, it should only be taken if a specific iodine deficiency is identified and recommended by your GP and not alongside medication such as levothyroxine.
Patients who take levothyroxine for their underactive thyroid do not have a functioning thyroid able to absorb iodine, so this natural treatment will not work. Equally, taking an iodine supplement can worsen the condition if you are being treated for an overactive thyroid.
Can Biotin encourage thyroid hair regrowth?
Biotin is known for its role in improving our hair's condition. It is a great supplement for helping bring life back to dull and thinning hair, keeping it in top condition and helping to prevent hair loss. People trying to rebuild and nourish their hair regrowth after loss due to a thyroid issue can incorporate biotin into their vitamin intake. However, if you are experiencing regular or extreme hair loss caused by illness or thyroid problems, we recommend Ginkgo Biloba B+.
Other Ways to Help Hair Loss from Thyroid Disease
Finding ways to help encourage regrowth and healthier hair after loss due to thyroid disease is possible. There are many things you can do to improve and enhance your hair's quality and minimise the impact of hair loss, including:
Reduce the use of heat on your hair
While heated hair products and accessories are readily available and perhaps used on special occasions and in salons, they do damage the hair if used daily. Opt for heatless hair techniques that help keep your hair in the best condition possible.
Take care of your scalp
Your scalp is vital to helping your hair regrow and nourishing its strength. Scalp massages help to stimulate the follicles, and different scalp oils can help to nourish your scalp too. Cedarwood oil helps to promote hair growth, while chamomile can add shine or softness to your hair. Other oils to consider for your scalp's benefit include clary sage and coconut oil, all helping to stimulate and nourish your hair as it grows.
Increase protein intake
A protein deficiency can impact your hair's health, so finding ways to up your protein intake will encourage healthier hair. The best foods to add to your diet for hair growth and protein kick include eggs, fatty fish and dark leafy greens. Find out more about the best foods for healthy hair.
Regular exercise is good for your general health and strength, but it also has specific benefits for hair health. Regular exercise improves your body's blood flow, including to the scalp, and this can help to promote healthier hair regrowth.
Supplements for hair
Supplementing your diet with the right vitamins and minerals can help ensure your thyroid hair loss is treated naturally. Biotin and B vitamins help develop keratin, vital for hair and nail growth. Ensuring you get your recommended daily allowance of all vitamins and minerals helps boost your immune system and improve your general health. Designed with all hair types in mind, you’ll be able to find a hair supplement for you. If you’re looking to improve the condition of your hair, prevent hair loss or reduce damage, our Biotin supplements are recommended. If you’re experiencing hair loss or severe thinning, we recommend our Ginkgo Biloba B+ supplements.
Stress is a known trigger for hair loss and can also contribute to thyroid-related hair loss. Life can be overwhelming, but finding the time to take stock, reflect and step back can be vital in stabilising stress levels. Download a mindfulness app or engage in a few minutes of meditation daily to help balance your mind.
Explore the Simone Thomas Hair Growth Supplement Range
Simple changes can lead to big differences in your hair loss and regrowth journey. Incorporating supplements into your routine can massively help to give your body, hair and skin the nutrients they need to rebalance and recover from thyroid conditions. Simone Thomas Wellness hair supplements are backed by science and have been expertly formulated to help promote healthy hair growth, leading to thicker, shinier, healthier locks.
Our multi-award-winning Biotin Hair Care Plan, or Ginkgo hair supplement plan, voted No.1 Best Hair Care Supplements by the Independent, offers vegan-friendly hair regrowth plans containing Biotin, Ginkgo Biloba B+, Iodine and other high-quality ingredients designed to feed your hair with the best blend of high-grade vitamins, iodine, live cultures and botanicals so you can feel confident that you are nourishing your hair and body from the inside out to achieve thicker, shinier, and healthier hair.
For more information on how our hair care plans can help combat hair loss caused by thyroid problems, check out our Biotin or Ginkgo hair supplements. Alternatively, get in touch with Simone Thomas Wellness for advice on finding the most effective hair care plan for you.