Hair thinning due to low ferritin?

Rachel5Rachel5 Posts: 10Registered Users
Hello, I'm new here.
My hair has become very thin due to low ferritin. It's at a 7. I have other symptoms too but I'll just mention hair related stuff. My doctor wants to see at least 50. She recommended I take an iron supplement. So I'm going to be taking ferrous sulfate 325mg. I don't have heavy periods. It got so low from not getting enough iron in food each day. You're supposed to get 100% and only recently (a couple months) have I started doing that. I used to get less than 50% a day. So that combined with my period even though it's not heavy caused me to become so low.

I have naturally curly hair and when my iron was normal, it was a really tight curl. It has now turned into a mix of loose curls and waves. It looks much better. I thought at first it was from straightening too much but now I think it could be from the low ferritin. I read it can cause the hair to not hold the curl as well. I like how my hair looks now (except for the thinning) much better than how it used to look. And I'm just worried that when I take the iron supplement, it might cause my tight curls to come back. I'm going to take it regardless but is it possible that this will happen? Could the low ferritin have caused this or not?

Comments

  • StarmieStarmie Posts: 7,169Registered Users Curl Virtuoso
    It seems unlikely to me, but I'm no expert. I had very low ferritin levels about 18 months ago but never noticed any change to my curl pattern, now my levels are up again there's still no change.
    3b in South Australia.
  • PadraiginPadraigin Posts: 36Registered Users
    My Dermatologist told me I need at a Ferritin level of at least 40 for good hair growth. I had hair loss due to stress, but regrowth will be a problem without more iron. So yes Ferritin can impact thickness. I'm not sure about the looser curl pattern. I tend to think the curl pattern change is from something else. I think lots of things cause changes in curl pattern. Hormones such as from pregnancy and birth control can change curls. Medication can also change curl pattern. Sometimes curl pattern just changes every several years. I'm 45, and have had a variety of natural curl types. Birth control in my 20s took away my 3b curls, but I think my curls were getting tighter in part due to a couple rounds of Accutane. I think I was 3a 2c in high school, but hair care was so different back then that I'm not sure . I'm only a 2b to 2c now at 45 and have been so for years.

    Regardless, you need more iron if your ferritin is that low. Iron effects more than just your hair, but also your overall health.
  • BluebloodBlueblood Posts: 1,748Registered Users Curl Neophyte
    When my ferritin was low my curl pattern never changed.

    When my vitamin D was low my stands coarseness and the curl pattern changed.

    Both deficiencies caused loss of density which doesn't help if you have low density hair in the first place.

    I would worry about more about your general health than your hair.
  • Rachel5Rachel5 Posts: 10Registered Users
    Thanks everyone!
    I couldn't take the ferrous sulfate so my doctor is having me take Flintstones with iron instead.
    Did any of you notice when your ferritin was low that you had a receding hairline at all? I'm having a receding hairline in the front and on the sides. My forehead is bigger than it used to be and I have patches on the sides of my head where no hair is. I have never worn extensions or tight braids.

    If not the ferritin, what could be causing this? My dad went bald at an early age, like in his 30's so it's really worrisome.

    Should I see someone about this? I've read some people say to see a trichologist...is that a hairstylist? Or should I go back to my normal doctor?
  • BluebloodBlueblood Posts: 1,748Registered Users Curl Neophyte
    Rachel5 wrote: »
    Thanks everyone!
    I couldn't take the ferrous sulfate so my doctor is having me take Flintstones with iron instead.
    Did any of you notice when your ferritin was low that you had a receding hairline at all? I'm having a receding hairline in the front and on the sides. My forehead is bigger than it used to be and I have patches on the sides of my head where no hair is. I have never worn extensions or tight braids.
    When I had a haemoglobin deficiency years ago I had this.

    This time because I had 2 confirmed deficiencies and one suspected deficiency I had a whole host of problems that couldn't be blamed on one, the other or none of them.

    I had to wait until all my deficiencies were resolved to find out which were and were not related. As they resolved at different times I could see that some were related to one, others were related to both and one was related to none of them.
    Rachel5 wrote: »
    If not the ferritin, what could be causing this?
    It is very likely to be ferritin.

    You have to be patient and get your levels up to normal. This takes time and doesn't happen quickly.

    The first thing you (or those around you will notice) is that you are less tired and you have more energy.

    You will probably find that your hair starts going normal at the roots before you have a blood test to confirm that your levels are now adequate.
    Rachel5 wrote: »
    My dad went bald at an early age, like in his 30's so it's really worrisome.
    Male pattern baldness is unlikely to be related.

    Until your ferritin levels are up to normal no one can see if you are suffering from something else.

    If your mother, grandmothers and aunts don't have issues then you are unlikely to have female pattern baldness.
    Rachel5 wrote: »
    Should I see someone about this?
    Not at the moment as you are being treated adequately by your doctor.

    If:
    1. Your doctor doesn't test you at least 6 months from now and says whether you are getting better, or,
    2. In 14 months your hair hasn't improved at the roots,
    then go and see someone else.
    Rachel5 wrote: »
    I've read some people say to see a trichologist...is that a hairstylist? Or should I go back to my normal doctor?
    A trichologist may or may not be a hairstylist. Some dermatologists specialise in trichology, some hairstylists specialise in trichology and some people are just trichologists. A lot depends on the country you live in.

    As your doctor has recognised your deficiency and is treating it adequately there is no point in seeing someone else.

    The most important two things are - ensure you take the supplements daily as prescribed and be patient.
  • Rachel5Rachel5 Posts: 10Registered Users
    Thanks Blueblood!
    I'm starting to wonder if part of it is due to this shampoo/conditioner I've been using. My hair was already thinning but a couple months after I started using this new shampoo/conditioner recommended to me by a hairstylist who was not mine, this problem occurred. My ferritin is the same it was just a couple months ago when I didn't have this problem. I literally have bald patches on the sides of my head. I'm attaching a picture. It's a sulfate-free shampoo. Every time I use a sulfate free shampoo, I get hair thinning or patches or something like that. It's happened before. It's like my hair gets too moisturized from it like when people cowash. I shampoo every 3 days but it's still happening. The sulfate free shampoo always starts out amazing and then this happens a couple months after using it. I've never had problems with regular sulfate shampoos, even drugstore brands. I got the new shampoo/conditioner the end of October. My hair although thinner wasn't having this problem with bald patches before. I'm gonna stop using it. I hope the damage isn't already done.

    Does it sound like this could be causing it? I know the thinning is low ferritin (my hgb and hct are normal) but the bald spots just don't seem normal.
  • curlypearlcurlypearl Posts: 12,226Registered Users Curl Connoisseur
    Rachel, I've had a problem with a receding hairline also so I can understand very well how much of a problem it can be.

    Just a few tips that may help: Iron is best absorbed in the presence of Vit. c. You may already know this but I just thought I would mention it. So if you are eating a high iron dish, like meat or fish, make sure you have some tomatoes or orange juice or something with C to help it absorb.

    Also, if it turns out not to be caused by low ferritin, I've had good results with Rogaine. I get the drugstore generic men's version. It's a foam. I only use it once a day (men use it twice). That's what my dermatologist recommended.

    Anyway, I hope your situation gets a lot better. Post back and let us know how you are doing. Best of luck to you!
    2/c Coarse hair med. density.
    Highly porous. Color over grey.
    I love all the Curl Junkie products. Still experimenting with gels and curl creams. Still hoping for 2nd day hair....
    Every day is a gift :flower:

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