Antibiotics Hair Loss Side Effects

Antibiotics Hair Loss Side Effects

Every medication comes with the risk of side effects.  Most commonly, these are mild and typically include dizziness, nausea, and fatigue. However, certain medications, such as antibiotics, can cause additional complications – including thinning hair. When used to treat a bacterial infection, antibiotics can lead to excessive shedding and temporary patchiness. To help prevent this issue, one must first understand why antibiotics make hair thin, and the best ways to regain hair health.


Is There A Link Between Medication And Baldness?

Thinning hair is not uncommon in men. While the most common cause is male-pattern baldness (androgenetic alopecia, a genetic disorder), other common causes may include stress, diet, or – yes – medications. Loss of hair can be caused by certain medications used to treat things such as blood pressure, acne, or depression. Additionally, some antibiotics have been found to negatively affect hair health.

While antibiotics are one of the most powerful tools today for treating certain infections, they cannot work with precision. As a result, they attack any bacteria in the body, both good and bad. The use of antibiotics, however brief, can have a noticeable effect on beneficial bacteria in the digestive tract. This makes it harder for the body to synthesize nutrients from B vitamins and can lead to significant hair loss.


When and Why Does Thinning Occur?

Certain drugs have been shown to alter the natural hair growth cycle. This cycle is made up of four different phases – anagen, catagen, telogen, and exogen The anagen phase is when the hair grows from the hair follicle and can last from 2- 6 years. Telogen is a period of rest for the scalp and typically lasts for around 3 months before transitioning to the exogen phase in which the hair is naturally shed. Certain antibiotics have been shown to trigger a process called telogen effluvium. This disorder can cause otherwise healthy hair follicles to enter the resting period earlier than they should. This can cause the number of hairs lost in a day to triple, from 100 to more than 300.

Typically, any thinning from antibiotics occurs anywhere from two to three months after beginning treatment. When the body undergoes a major change, such as an infection or the introduction of antibiotics, healthy hair follicles may enter the telogen phase early. This can occur up to three months after finishing your course of treatment with antibiotics.


Can I Regrow Thinning Hair?

Good news, the loss of hair from antibiotics is not permanent. In fact, losing hair from antibiotics typically means that new hair is growing in, which is why excessive hair loss rarely lasts longer than six months. While your hair may look and feel thinner than usual, this is a temporary issue and fullness will return. If your thinning hair is very noticeable, there are a few things that may help in the short term. There are several common foods, like omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin B12, and biotin, that have been shown to positively affect hair growth. Diet plays a key role in hair health. For extra thickness, include more iron in each meal with foods like broccoli or kale. Additionally, protein is also vital for healthy hair growth.


What If My Hair Loss Persists?

If your lost hair has not returned by six months following the end of your treatment, you may be experiencing hair loss that is unrelated to any medication. For people suffering from long-term, chronic hair loss, the only truly permanent solution is a hair transplant operation. A hair transplant in Turkey uses a patient’s own, healthy hair to cover up the spots left behind by natural hair loss ensuring natural, permanent results.

Dr Serkan Aygin has assisted more than 15,000 men and women from around the world over the last 25 years. During this time, he has achieved a hair regrowth rate of 98% and was honoured with the European Award for Medicine in the field of Hair Transplantation. Our world-class clinic is located in the heart of Istanbul at one of Turkey’s most prestigious hospitals. Contact us today to schedule your full, free consultation.

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