Losing your hair can be another consequence of the pandemic

Doctors say that many patients recovering from COVID-19 are experiencing hair loss – not from the virus itself but from the physiological stress of fighting it off. (Photo: Sholto Ramsay/Unsplash)

Annrene Rowe was about to celebrate her 10th wedding anniversary this summer. However, she noticed a bald head on her scalp. Over the next few days, her thick, shoulder-length hair began to fall into clumps, clumping in the shower drain.

“I was crying hysterically,” 67-year-old Rowe said.

Rowe was hospitalized with coronavirus symptoms for 12 days in April, and soon found a surprisingly similar story in the online COVID-19 survivor group. Many people say that a few months after contracting the virus, they begin to shed amazing hair.

Doctors said that they are also seeing more hair loss patients. They believe that this phenomenon is indeed related to the coronavirus pandemic. This is affecting both people who have the virus and people who have never been sick.

Normally, some people lose a lot of hair after going through a huge stressful experience (such as illness, major surgery or emotional trauma).

Doctors say that many patients who have recovered from COVID-19 are now losing their hair-not because of the virus itself, but because of the physical pressure to resist it. Many people who have never contracted the virus also lose their hair due to work stress, financial stress, emotional stress caused by the death of family members or other destructive developments caused by the pandemic.

“There’s many, many stresses in many ways surrounding this pandemic, and we’re still seeing hair loss because a lot of the stress hasn’t gone away.” Dr. Shilpi Khetarpal, an associate professor of dermatology at the Cleveland Clinic said.

Before the pandemic

Khetarpal had not seen a single hair loss patient for several weeks. She said that now, about 20 such patients come every week. One is a woman who has difficulties in educating two young children at home while working at home. The other is a second-year teacher who is eagerly trying to ensure that all her students can use computers and the Internet for online teaching.

In the July investigation of 1,567 members of the survivor group, 423 people reported abnormal hair loss. The survivors organization and the Indiana University School of Medicine associate researcher Natalie Lambert said.

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