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Stopped birth control pill after 5 years...losing hair...link?

I recently stopped taking birth control and for the past few weeks have noticed an increase in my hair falling out. I have naturally thin hair and thinning spots due to genes, but I am getting worried that too much hair is falling out. Does this have to do with my stopping the pill and if so, is this going to be a permanent problem?
Anything will help, Thanks!
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I had been on the pill for 21 yrs..... came off in march of this year and had bad spots for the first 5 months, still some now but the worrying thing is the hair loss. I do have a lot of hair but am well aware that if it keeps coming out at the rate it is then it will notice to others very soon. Like others i dread washing it and i no people say not to stress but hard not too. It has been coming out for the last to months now and although no bald patches as yet.....i notice how thin it is beginning to feel. I have been to the doctors and was told that it cant be the pill as it only stays in your system for 3 months but with any change/illness your hair and nails are delayed. I also had blood tests but all came back clear. No one has said that this will get better with time. I will be looking to have children in the near future so dont wont to go back on the pill.

There doesn't seem to be anything to take to make this stop...... just hoping that in time it will sort it's self out as still believe it must be the pill.
:(

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Hi Nisha,

Did your hair stop falling out when you went back on the birth control?
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Hi There,

Has anyone gone back on the pill when this started happening? Did they see any improvement???
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I was on the pill for about 8 or 9 years and then stopped 2.5 years ago to try a copper IUD (which was a big mistake for someone who has never had children as it was extremely painful). I removed the IUD after a few months and noticed a lot of shedding. At the time I thought it was stress related and didn't associate it with getting off the pill months before. I tried Nuvaring and the shedding was worse for several months.
Then my dermatologist recommended that I get a low hormone pill like Yaz to promote hair re-growth. He told me to stay on it for at least a year consistently before I get off since I was so concerned about the side effects of hormones. After a few months of being back on the pill...the shedding was completely gone but my hair was thinner than before.
So I stayed on Yaz for a year and a half and just stopped a few weeks ago. The shedding is back again!! I guess at this point my only options are to go back on Yaz and deal with shedding when I'm ready to have children or deal with another several months or year of shedding until it stops?!
I'm not sure what to do but I think I may try to exercise more for now and continue eating healthy and organic and see what happens over the next few weeks before I decide to get back on.
For the people that have gotten off the pill completely… how long did it take for the shedding to stop?
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Hi everyone,

It sounds like we are all going through the same thing.  I was on Birth Control for years, and switched a bunch of times, went off it a few times (for up to a year) and never had any problems. Until now.  I went off BC (Levora) in July and in August started noticing that more of my hair was falling out than was normal for me.  I dont think I'm losing 100's but it's enough that I notice it and am starting to worry that it is thinning in the front.  I have a doctors appointment in a few days and will update after that, but after reading this blog I'm not convinced the doctor will be able to help much.  I have also made an appointment to see an alternative medicine guy who uses Chinese herbs and acupuncture- he seemed confident that he would be able to help (Fingers crossed!).  I also bough some shampoo with Biotin from Wholefoods to help spark new growth.  I'm optomistic that I will find a way to stop the shedding without using hormones and birth control.

I just want to say to everyone who was looking for someone to come back to this site with positive results that the fact that there aren't positive stories on here is not a bad sign.  The reason we are all searching this site is because we are having problems and need advice.  It's unlikely that people who get their hair to grow back and are less worked up about this are going to go back searching and find sites they read before to update.  So, to be honest, the fact that there are more stories of people coming back saying UGH, i lost all this hair initially and that they keep losing it months and years later means something.  Trust me if I'm still losing hair in 6 months I'll be back here still freaking out.  I'll try to remember to come back and update if the acupuncture works, but I'm optomistic that our systems will rebalance out and all of this will just be a really annoying few months that we had to go through.  Positive thinking and Good luck!
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Wow! I'm in absolute disbelief. I thought that I was one of very few going through this. I am a natural blonde with fine hair. I began taking Orthotricyclen at the age of 14 as a treatment for acne. I am now 24. I recently changed my hair color to brunette with a gentle non-ammonia treatment. It was then that I noticed my hair is falling out in great amounts. When it was lighter, it was not as noticable. Sooo... my husband and I decided that I would stop taking the pill. I did about two weeks ago. The hair just keeps coming out! I am debating whether to go to a general practice or a dermatologist. I don't want to take the pill anymore, but it seems as though that is what they will tell me to do! I'll post anything new on here, if I learn anything at the doc.
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i am 26 years old and have been on various birth control pills since i was 15. my hair has always been very thick and wavy, but not now. i stopped taking birth control about a month ago because my blood pressure was up and the doctors kept switching me from this birth control to that birth control to try and fix the problem, and my body was just so out of wack that i wanted to allow it to calm down.

since stopping the pills, my hair has been coming out a lot, ive definitely noticed that its thinning, as did my mother. when i pull it back it feels extremely thin, much thinner than ever. i havent thought to make a doctors appointment yet, and after reading this forum it doesnt seem like they will be much help. i guess im just gonna try and wait it all out... im hoping and praying this is absolutely temporary and my hair will return to its normal thick and wavy state!

all you ladies are in my thoughts... good luck to us all!
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Hi Everyone,

Im so glad ive found this site! Im a 20 year old female and have been losing my hair at an alarming rate ever since i decided to stop microgynon 30.
I had been taking microgynon30 for four years and the only break i ever had from it was the few days a month to have my period, but id never had an extended break from the pill. In May of this year i decided i would quit birth control all together for a little while, i wasnt in a relationship at the time and just thought it would be a good idea to give myself a break. Within about 4-6 weeks of stopping the pill my hair began to shed. At first i didnt think the two could be linked, i just put it down to stress, or the fact that it was summer and some people get a little seasonal shedding. But by the time i reached September my hair was falling out at an alarming rate, and still is! I hate washing or brushing my hair as it just makes me cry. It just looks terrible, i do not straighten or colour my hair, and ever since it started to fall out ive stopped blow drying too. Id say ive lost about a quarter of my hairs natural volume, it looks very thin! So anyway it was in september that i started looking back over my calendar and realised my hair loss started not long after i quit my pill, i went to see my doctor to tell him this and he behaved like i was crazy. He said starting the pill could cause hair loss, but definitely not stopping it. Yet here we all are on this forum. He agreed to send me for blood work, but it all came back clear. With my hair loss becoming so dramatic and my doctor being useless, i paid to see a trichologist who said i had chronic telogen effluvium, but was also refusing to believe it could be as result of stopping the pill. She told me there is no treatment for TE and that id have to wait for my shedding 'episode' to finish, usually within 6 months apparently. So feeling none the wiser i came home depressed. I began searching in my house for the leaflet that used to come with my birth control pills to see if that had any information, and to my surprise found a full box of Microgynon30 that i had obviously stashed away at some point for emergencies, since i was always rubbish at getting to the doctors for repeat prescriptions. That was a week ago and today ive decided that im going to put myself back on to microgynon and see what happens to my hair. Im not holding out much hope that it will stop the awful hairloss, but since there is a chance im willing to give it a go! I PROMISE to come back in a few weeks and let you all know if anything has happened.

Also whilst doing lots of research i came across a pill called florisene, i dont know if you can get in the US but i have just ordered some off the internet, i have read lots and lots of positive things about it and think i might as well try it.

Good luck to you all!
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Well, I have to say it's somewhat of a relief to know that I am not the only one! I stopped taking the pill after 15 years!!! I am now almost 33 years old and I made a decision to stop injecting my body with hormones, hence why I stopped.
Last year, my doctor changed my pill from Yaz to Ortho tricyclen cause I was reading all the terrible side effects of Yaz. I noticed hair loss then, so I started taking Phytophanere Dietary Supplement for hair and nails, and the Phytocyane Revitalizing Serum - Thinning Hair for Women. One is a daily pill supplement and one is a serum you put in your roots after you shower, it's a 12 week process. And it worked. I had my hair back after 3 months!!! I have naturally thick long hair and it was all back!

About 2 months ago, I stopped taking the pill all together, and my hair fell out at a very fast rate!!! I have about 1/3 of the hair I had last year and have been so depressed about it.  I just bought the Phyto products last week and going to try them out.
I will check back in 3 months and give you a status. But I strongly suggest you guys try this out.  It's $100 for both products combined and you can get them at Sephora!

GOOD LUCK!
Sami
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Hi everyone,

My story started about four years ago. My dad died, I went off the pill, I was diagnosed with a thyroid problem and I am borderline anemic.  Since then I have went to several Dr's for hair loss. Some told me my hair was fine. That was frustrating.  I have since got my thyroid under control and my iron levels are now fine. I thought maybe that was the problem. No such luck.  My newest doctor has run about 18 different blood tests and all levels are fine. He has recommended a scalp biopsy. I am thinking about that. Now I started using rogain about 4 weeks ago. Hopeful since summer is coming and won't want to go swimming!  Recently I have been thinking the stress from my dad dying and going off the pill could definitely be it. So the question is should I go back on the pill?   It's a last resort but I am ready to think about other things besides my hair or lack of!  Ugh.
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Hi, i hav too experienced the tingling in my scalp. i have been on the pill since i was 13 and stopped it at 30, a few months ago and i can seriously fill the toilet bowl with my hair everyday. I am so scared of looking in the mirror incase i find my self bald.
Let me know if you find a cure.
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I've had the same thing as everyone else! I'm 20 years old, and a few months ago just went off the pill after 2 and a half years. I dye my hair a lot, so when I started to shed excessively after a month or so, I figured it must be from that. I'm glad I'm wrong (I love dying my hair!) but this hair loss is stressful. I am going to the doctors to get bloodwork done soon. I hope it grows back!!!
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Hi everyone,

I was on Diane 35 for about 7 years..I stopped two years ago to prepare my body to get pregnant because I have heard that it takes a while to get pregnant after stopping the pill. I have always had thin hair but still got compliments on it. My hair is dropping so much. It looks so thin. I feel so bad about myself. Also, I even got a moustache. I have never had any facial hair to speak about or do anything about except a little on my eyebrows. Now I have a moustache and my skin has completely changed. I have open pores and acne on my neck and chest and back.

I wish there was something to help besides going back on the pill, although I must say I am tempted to go back on.  
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Hi all,
I was reading this forum a few months ago, desperate to find a cure for my sudden hair loss (back in June/July), and I had read these people promising to come back and give some feed back, so I thought that I would post some feedback.

I had been on the Estelle 35 (same as Diane) for approx 4 years and came off in early March. I was a massive advocate for the pill (especially when it came to my skin, it was much better!). However, I started to develop anxiety and had no sex-drive. I am 24 years old and have been with my partner for nearly 5 years and find him very attractive, however my libido was zilch and my developing anxiety was just unbearable.
I had thought about coming off the pill for a while. I went to see the doctor (March) and he suggested coming off the pill to see how I went. Straight away I felt MUCH better, was back to my happy and bubbly self. My periods were fine and on time every month, just a little heavier.
I moved house in June and had school reports to write (I am a school teacher) so I put this stress down to my more than usual hair loss. However, the holidays came, and my hair loss was getting much worse. My hair was very, very oily too (I wash my hair everyday, and it was still extremely oily).
Now, I feel very sorry for women with any hair loss, but if your hair is as naturally (painfully) as thin as mine, it is devastating! It was now June/July and I could loss about 200 hairs from just getting my partner to give me a head massage, it just kept coming out :( Every time a brushed it, ran my fingers through it, etc I would just keep losing more and more.

I saw everyone! Naturapaths, Doctors, Acupuncturists, etc. Finally another doctor recommended me to a dermatologist and he told me straight away that this hair loss was caused by the sudden stop of the pill. I had chronic telogen effluvium. This was supposed to last about 6 months. I was sooo mad at my doctor and the pill company, neither one had said that the pill (stopping or starting) could cause hair loss. As depressing as it sounds, there is nothing that you can do to stop this hair loss because the hair cells are in a 'resting state' which means they are all ready dead and will fall out eventually.

Now it has been about 7 months after stopping the pill, and my hair loss is slowly, but surely stopping (I am now probably losing 20 or so hairs when I brush it). I know this sounds like a long time but it will go quickly! As hard as it sounds, try not to dwell on it! I was sooo depressed about this and researched and researched everything and anything that I could do for a nearly 2 months straight.

The dermatologist did prescribe me rogaine, however I have opted not to take any more chemicals or drugs that could have (another!) devastating side effects! I have been taking herbal supplements (such as silica, zinc, vitamin and mineral tablets, fusion women's balance or fusion hair tonic tablets) and using natural shampoo, basically anything that I could get my hands on that I thought might help! And I have a fair bit of regrowth and fly-aways, plus my nails are growing like crazy! I never had long nails and would always bite them (perhaps due to anxiety, now I don't have the urge at all).

Anyway, it has been about 7 months since stopping the pill, but I assure you it WILL get better! I feel so much better mentally, and feel generally much happier. My hair loss is stopping and the oiliness lasted only a few weeks or so. My skin has broken out  (perhaps due to a poor diet) but I have faith that this will get better too!

My final point, I had always been a HUGE advocate for the birth control pill, but after the sheer hell that myself and many, many, MANY other women have been through, I would never EVER recommend going on it, or back on it. I personally feel that there should be some sort of repercussions for the companies of these birth control pills, and even the doctors who give us women absolutely no warning when prescribing the pill or recommend to suddenly go off it. From the bottom of my heart, good luck to you all and just have faith, there is light at the end of the tunnel, I promise!          
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Thank you so much for your post. I went off of the pill in March and at the beginning of May, I noiced increase of hairloss. I had been on the pill for about 6-7 years (since high school). I decided to go off of the pill because my husband left for Afghanistan and I wanted to make sure that my body was ready for baby-making when he returns home next March.
I have thin hair but always had a lot of it. My hair barely fell out when I washed, blow-dried, or brushed it. So, of course I started freaking out when my hair started falling out. I have also noticed the increase in greasiness as well! I have read that the hormonal hairloss can last normally up to 6 months after it begins so I pray that it stops soon. I would hate to see my husband again after not seeing him for a year and be bald! What a surprise that would be. And yes, I went to the doc and dermatologist and got blood work done. Everything is normal so I know it must be the stupid pill. I too and very angrey that no doctor told me about side effects about going OFF the pill before I actually begin the pill. I will NEVER go on the pill again so I never have to go through this hairloss. I am 26 years old and have only been married for a year and don't want to lose all my hair at such a young age.
It makes me feel better to know that other people can relate to me. I don't personally know anyone experiencing this and I hope my hair goes back to normal soon.
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Hi I know this is an old post I am asking about but I just wondered if your decision to go back on the ortho tri helped you to grow back the hair you lost after coming off of them.  I am in a similar situation and any insight you can give from your experience would be greatly appreciated.  Many thanks!
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Hi Sam, Just wondering if you or anyone else who had gone off the pill and lost your hair decided to get back on the pill and saw that it grew back in.  I am in a similar situation, considering going back on the pill as the hair that I lost 2 1/2 years of being off pill has not regrown and I fear is gradually getting thinner.  Have you or anyone else been able to get your hair back after going back ON the pill?  Many thanks for your replies!!  

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Hi, I'm in the same position,  I'm 36 been on the pill for about 18 years ony breaking to have my two children.  I've just stopped taking the pill and am losing my hair at a terrifying rate.  I'm convinced it's the cause.  I'm so worried this is just going to continue until I have very little left.  I've always had really thick hair and am really struggling with the difference I'm already noticing after only coming off of Microgynon 3 weeks ago.  PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE can any of you who posted on here a while ago let me know what happened - did the hair loss stop? did your hair grow back and go back to normal?  How long did the hair loss last for?  Did it come back with or without going back on the pill?  I'd really appreciate any answers any of you can give - even if it's not what I want to hear - and information would be wonderful!  Thank you xxxxx
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I have been on Ocella for almost 4 years and just got off the pill one month ago. I had an abnormal pap smear and mild cervical dysplasia that I read could be linked to prolonged use of the pill. Both of my doctors told me it was okay to stay on the pill, but I have read about instances of cervical cancer and do not want to take any risks by being on the pill.

I used the pill primarily to control my acne and help with cramps.

Since stopping the pill, for the last few weeks I've had faster than average shedding. I've been taking longer breaks between washing but just shed more when I do wash :\ Also have had acne, but am trying to control it with antibiotics. It is really distressing and I hope my body's hormones can rebalance soon. The pap smear, follow ups, biopsy, cramps, acne, and shedding are all just weighing down on  me and I am praying I can go back to normal :(
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Hello, was reading an old post of yours on medhelp and wondered if you had success in growing your hair back after getting back on the pill.  thanks
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hello did you get your hair back after going back on bcp?  thanks
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Hi there, thought I would send you a reply since no one else seems to answer their posts.  Unfortunately, I wish I had better news for you.  I am still shedding around 200 per day since getting off the pill 3 years ago.  I am slowly slowly getting thinner I think.  I have growth but because of the continued shedding, it seems that it will never thicken up.  I did not go back on the pill yet, however, I have a current prescription for it (the same one I was on before this nightmare began!)  I am terrified to go back on it as I can't seem to get any concrete answers that it would help the situation by going back on.  One of three things would happen by going back on.  1. it would help. 2.  it would not change anything.  3.  it would trigger more shedding.  It is for the third reason I have not tried to go back on.  Currently I am waiting for a sign from God as to what to do.  All the ladies who went back on the pill after they lost hair coming off, have not come back to post their results.  What do you suppose that means??  I am currently taking a multi vitamin, iron supplement (ferritin level is 32 - heard that could be the reason for increased shedding and poor growth, so you may want to have your ferritin level checked.  Supposed to be above 40 to stop shedding and sustained at above 70 for healthy growth) and yesterday I just started Viviscal. Anyway, good luck to you in finding your answers too.  
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I noticed a few months ago that I had developed a bald spot in the front of my head. I went to the doctor who then tested my thyroid levals to discover they were low. I am now waiting to see a specialist. I also stopped taking birth control a bit befour I noticed the hair loss, I was on it for 7 years. My hair has gotten really thin and I know have two bald spots on the top of my head. I went back to the doctor again today and she prescribed rogain for me. I have no idea what to do!
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I am 29 and stopped taking the pill 4 months ago. after a couple of months I noticed a receding hairline and thought I must be imagining it. I steadily noticed an overall thinning so much so that I can now see through to my scalp. My hair is very greasy, with a red itchy scalp. I also have dreadful acne and increased facial hair along with horrible greasy skin (which was previously quite dry). I have noticed fluffy hair regrowth along the receeding hairline but it is minimal. I have always had fine, thin hair so this is very noticable to me as I don't have a lot to lose to be bald. I am taking antibiotics for the acne but the results have been minimal. I believe this is all related to coming off the pill. I started the pill 8 years ago to deal with cramps and acne and stopped as I was becoming increasingly anxious, sad and had a reduced libido. I am trying not to let my vanity take over but if i thought going back on the pill would restart my hair growth I would do it today. I am just worried that another shock to the hormones by going back on will cause another bout of TE and leave me with no hair at all! The depression cause by the hair loss and dreadful skin is as bad as any symptoms caused by being on the pill

i have a doctors appointment next week to make sure it is not anything thyroid or iron related.

There are always so many stories but very few people ever follow up to say what happened when they go back on the pill... I wish everyone going through this all the best of luck and health in the future
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I can appreciate your post.  Your situation is nearly identical to mine except I have been dealing with this for THREE years now!  I torment myself every month on whether or not to restart the pill.  I like you am very concerned that restarting would shock my system into having another dread shed however I cannot afford to lose much more hair since my regrowth from the first shed was minimal.  Can I ask you how much you are shedding now daily?  When my shedding was at its worst a couple months after getting off the pill I bet it was around 300-500 a day for a few weeks.  Then it tapered down and ever since its been around 150-200 per day.  That still seems so high to me and no matter what supplement or shampoo I use I cannot seem to get my shedding below that!  Very frustrating.  Shedding over two years now at that rate, I would have thought I would be bald by now, but I am not.  But my hair remains thin despite continuous regrowth.  I shed all over long ones, short ones, thick ones, thin ones.  But my thinness is most noticible on top at the bangs and my temples are ridiculously bare.  Good luck to you and please update if you decide to go back on the pill.  I will share my experience and update as well.  Currently I am on viviscal for a couple of weeks so far with no noticible change but its supposed to take a few months.  Thanks.
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Hi my name is Veronica and I'm 31 years old.

I started losing my hair dramatically after to switching birth control from Yaz to Yasmin.  I didn't realize that birth control was the reason I was losing my hair!  Thank you guys for posting comments here.  It has been helpful to me during my research but I'm sadden that there are so many people out there with this same awful experience!  

I decided to stop using birth control 6 months ago.  I wanted my body to function on it's own and increase my estrogen hormone levels naturally.  It was tough watching my hair fall out in the shower (which I am still experiencing) but at least my bald spot on my temples wasn't getting worse.  

Since then my hair is finally filling in on my bald spots.  I still have a ways to go but I do see improvement on my hair texture.  Take vitamins during this process!!  I will check in and let you know my progress!
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Icegal, I was on Estelle for 2 years for my skin. I was 30 and still breaking out. When I stopped, I had hair falling out in clumps in the shower, shedding on my pillow, on clothes. I REGRET ever having gone on Estelle - I was so tempted to sue my dermatologist for never making me aware of the hair loss side-effect. If you read the PDF on Estelle online, it does mention hair fall as a side effect some might experience.

I am now 33 and my hair is not half of what I donned before. If only all of us here were aware of this correlation between hair loss and coming off the pill. If only we could rewind time! I somehow expected the thickness to restore slightly as time passed, but it hasn't. I now warn my friends and others against taking the pill. I can't swallow the fact that some Dermatologists / Doctors aren't aware of this and are so careless with prescribing BC pills. My skin has gone back to breaking out again and I went to the best Dermatologist here in Melbourne, Australia and he recommended I go on the pill without flinching. When i mentioned my episode, he said, some BC pills like Yasmin don't cause hair loss. This was a statement he made after I mentioned my experience!! Even the best ones these days can be so careless - it's a pity.
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Hi there, Here is my experience of stopping and restarting taking the pill. I am 36 and had  been on it for 7 years when I first stopped the pill and my hair started falling out. I went through this cycle twice in the last 4 years. Each time, I restarted the pill it may have grown back a little, but the main thing it did was keep it from falling out. It never got back to what it had been before.

Last December (11 months ago) I stopped again (once and for all!!) with the intention of just riding out the hair loss. I figured my body would have to get back to normal at some point!  It was pretty bad at about the 3 month period when it started coming out. I was worrying constantly and obsessing over it, and then it sort of stopped. I also started taking a 2mg Biotin supplement each day and began seeing those short new growth hairs around my hairline - THRILLING!!  THis bliss lasted for about 4 months. I still have those shorties, but in the last 3 weeks I am back to a shower drain filled with hair, my hands filled with hair, my brush filled with hair, and my sink drain filled with hair. Something happened and I don't know what it is. I was actually feeling pretty good about my hair 3 weeks ago, thinking i was going to keep growing it, b/c it actually seemed thick enough to do so. And just like that, I am at my thinnest ever, ready to lop it off again because it is so scraggly.
So, I am almost at a year since stopping the pill and am still battling this. Its frustrating, but i am glad I stopped the pill once and for all and will never go back. It wont grow your hair back, it will only delay the inevitable.
Best of luck all. I am glad to know there are many of us in this together.
Try the Biotin supplement. I got mine at whole foods. new hairs seemed to appear in about 3 weeks...
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HI, I had been opn the pill for almost 20 yrs - a grandma by comparrison to most of you. I have been off for about 5 months and just now have noticed that my hair is thinning in the front - I never used to be able to see my scalp. No baldness in my family and I am hypothyroid on meds (have been for some time). Hoping to repart my hair and wait out the shedding. I have a small head and don't really relish the thought of baldness - it won't be pretty. Much rather have a great head of beautiful silver/gray hair like my mom did.
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Thanks for sharing your experience of what happened when you went back on.  Most people have not reported their experience after going back on, which leaves us to wonder if it helped, made it worse, or just did not change things at all.  So when you went back on, what was your shedding like compared to when you are off?  I cannot remember how much hair I shed all the years I was on the pill.  My husband says I have always shed my hair because he had to unclog our drain several times over the years, but honestly, I don't ever remember seeing hair everywhere like I do now.  I have been shedding steadily at 150 - 200 per day every day the entire 3 years I have been off after losing 300 or more for a few weeks after first getting off *dread shed*  It still seems like alot of hair to me to be losing daily now!  I've heard the norm is around 50 - 100 daily.  Which I am guessing what I was losing when I was on the pill for years.  Also, is your thinning all over or mostly on top.  Mine is mostly on top.  Thanks for your reply.
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Yes! My hair has been falling ever since I stopped taking the pill. I took it for 5 years. My blood work results are perfect. After I was pregnant,  the hair loss went away. But after I gave birth it came back. Yes, stopping taking those contraceptive pills can  cause women to lose their hair. I am one of them.
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Yes! My hair has been falling ever since I stopped taking the pill. I took it for 5 years. My blood work results are perfect. After I was pregnant,  the hair loss went away. But after I gave birth it came back. Yes, stopping taking those contraceptive pills can  cause women to lose their hair. I am one of them.
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Hello everyone.

I have had very similar experiences to all of you. In high school I had very long curly hair. I started taking birth control in college and switched several times between different brands, some made me feel crazy and others made my skin break out (alesse, orthotricyclene, loestrin).

So I decided after I graduated to get the depo shot. I was a poor college grad and it was a cheaper, longer lasting option than getting pills every month. First injection went without a hitch, but shortly before the second one I noticed that my hair was falling out more. It came out by the handful and gathered in a pile at the bottom of the bathtub. I had  long hair at the time and it was looking scraggly and thin. It was only after the second injection that I noticed that my hair loss increased. It was so bad that my only option was to get it cut into a pixie cut. BUT! and a big but here, my hair did grow back. Having a shorter cut also eliminated the handfulls of hair in the shower and drain. It took a few months, but once it started growing in, it was much thicker. I was not expecting it to be like when I was in high school, because hair thinning happens to us all as we age (granted not in the huge handfulls that we are currently experiencing).

So, being ingnorant to all the time, effort and bad hair days that I had experienced, I went back on birth control when I went to grad school. I took Yasmin for 2 years, Yaz for a month before switching to Ocella for about 2 years (stopped taking it because of being irritable and my skin breaking out). Then I had to wait until I got my period (which took 3 months) before I started taking Beyaz (for 7 months). My hair really started falling out when I switched to Beyaz (and it could have started from stopping and then starting up pills too), which gradually got worse. I also had such tender breasts and sore underarm lymph nodes that I could not lay on my chest and moving my arm at certian angles was painful. (I do breast cancer research, so I know it was not anything more than hormones and thank goodness it has resolved).

I stopped taking everything. I am 29, healthy, thin, exercise and eat organic foods and a vegan diet (with supplementation, so vitamins are not a factor). Since stopping birth control my hair has been falling out like crazy. Handfulls in the shower, when drying my hair, when styling it, on my pillow and it has been very oily. It is an embarrassing thing. To see my white scalp and have hair all over the back of my lab coat at work is disheartening. But it does get better and it does grow back. These things just take time. I work with cancer patients daily who have lost all of their hair and it does grow back. Maybe not how it once was, but it grows back.

Keep your head up and as so many other people have said, try not to dwell on it.
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It is interesting how even a change from name brand to the generic version will initiate hair fall as well as other symptoms.  Some people seem to be more sensitive to hormone changes than others, I am one of them, which makes it frustrating because unless my hormones stay in a delicate balance, which birth control seemed to do for me, I lose hair.  It does grow back obviously, otherwise I would be completely bald because of the amounts that I lose daily for 3 years now, but, it is much thinner overall than it was all the years I was on the pill, and I did shed alot, during those years too at times, but not like now.  I am hopeful still that it won't get worse and that it keeps growing back.  I have tried various supplements, vitamins, shampoos etc.  which only seem to exasperate the shed, oilyness, dandruff, etc. If anyone else has found anything to help, please share.
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I recently experienced this problem, and searched the internet for help. I just wanted to come back on and reassure people that the hair loss does stop!! I came off microgynon after being on it for 5 years. After a month I noticed my hair was falling out a lot. I have always had thick hair and it did shed more than the average person, but nothing like what happened after coming off the pill. It came out in handfuls, especially in the shower and after brushing. I became terrified of having a shower, bought products that were supposed to stop hairless, and poured over every piece of info I could find. Whilst I realised while it was happening, it did not make it any more scary, and for a time my hair did feel much thinner. For someone who is used to having thick hair this was terrifying, but then I guess I was lucky I had a lot of hair anyway! After about 4 months I realised the hairloss slowing down and now it is completely back to normal. What a relief!! Now the only issue I have is the return of spots, which disappeared for five lovely years. Now this is getting me down, but I will just have to go back to the products I used before I was on the pill, as my skin wasn't great before.  However I have lost weight, although I wasn't big anyway, but often felt bloated, and this has definitely reduced. So I just wanted to reassure people that your hair will stop falling out eventually. Just be patient, try not to over brush or over wash your hair when its at its worst. Good luck!
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I am glad i found this.  I had friends tell me that hair loss could occur when going off bc but they didn't seem sure so I went searching on the internet and couldn't find much.  This site has reassured me that going off Nuva ring may be the reason my hair is suddenly shedding a lot.  I went off in September because my husband I and I are ttc and in November, I started noticing so much hair in the shower drain that I freaked and started taking less showers and just wearing my hair up so I would touch it less.  It's now February and I noticed the shedding has definitely slowed and hoping it will grow back.  I am waiting to see my doctor at the end of this month because I also have spotting before I get my period and I never did before . . . have read on forums this can also be a sign of hormone imbalance.  I wish everyone the best.
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Hello. I found your comment very reassuring. Thanks for that. As well as the comment bellow yours(9more) i stopped the pill last year in sept and around 2 months after noticed my hair falling alarmingly quiclky...so i panicked, thinking i was going bald.. didnt know it could be because i stopped the pill until i found this site. My GP never mentioned anything to me about this possibility... I do have subclinical Hypothiroidism too, but my hair really started falling after i went off the Pill.

Thanks everyone here for their comments,,, Its been very useful to me and to many others im sure..

Analoo
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Let us know how you got on with your doctor.... thanks .
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I have experienced hair loss twice in my life and both from the pill.  The first time, I was 25, and had been on Ortho Tri Cyclen Lo for years.  I decided to come off, because I just didn't want to be on any medicine anymore.  I wanted a more natural lifestyle.  A month or so after coming off, my hair started falling out like crazy.  I was starting to be able to see my scalp.  My hair is not thick anyways, but very fine.  I had alot of hair, but the texture was very fine.  The shedding was so alarming that after a few months, I immediately got back on the pill out of fear.  Once back on, the shedding stopped, and the regrowth began.  Well, that's all great and wonderful, but I was still on the pill (which I didn't want to be).  Over the next year I switched my pill to regular Ortho Tri Cyclen (not the Lo version), and developed melasma (skin condition where you get dark patches on your face), and I researched and found it was from my pill.  Gotta love all these side effects!  Anyways, this was July 2011, and I decided, I was coming off the pill once and for all.  I bought a $400 skin lightening treatment, which has faded the melasma, and I was praying that hair loss would not come this time.  Well, it did, about September I noticed it starting, then in Oct/Nov/Dec it was like super shedding.  Coming out in handfuls, mainly in the shower.  I kept telling myself, this is only temporary, I am a healthy 28 year old woman that has no family history of hair loss, and this is just my body readjusting itself.  Although there were some days when I would just break down and cry.  As we all know, this can be very traumatizing...especially to women.  Anyways, in mid-January, I found the hair loss slowing down, and new little hairs along my hairline.  By February, the hair loss I think has regulated itself back to normal.  The little new hairs are growing in, but are still a very fine texture, and I'm not sure that all of the hairs lost are being replaced by new growth.  My part is still not as dense with hair as it once was, but I remain hopeful that by July or August (that will mark one year since I quit the pill) my hair will be close to what it was.  I'm not a doctor, but from what I have read, this is called telogen effluvium.  Basically a shock of some sort to your system, or starting or stopping, even switching forms of birth control.  Ah, the joys of being a woman :)  However, I think alot of the loss is only noticeable to me and not to everyone else.  I just keep on praying that my hair will restore itself back to its original state, and that my regrowth will continue.  FYI I take a multivitamin each day too, just to make sure that my iron, zinc, B12, and Biotin levels are where they should be :)  I hope this will help someone!
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To all the ladies experiencing hair loss...hormones drive our bodies. The hormones are driven by the birth control pills. Please note however that hormone levels do not DIRECTLY make your hair fall out. That is attributed to stress (to make it shed) and regrowth is possible but directly related to blood circulation and feeding the capillaries at the scalp so that your hair grows. Plain and simple. So, at the root of the problem is a circulation and blood deficiency of some sort, perhaps directly related to the liver (maybe or maybe not). Now for treatment idea, that has worked for me. As a referral from my acupuncturist, I started taking Fo-Ti in capsule form (Solaray). The first two weeks my eyesight improved and everything seemed clearer. After 3 months my hair started to grow. After the first year my hair was growing (only on the scalp BTW) about a half an inch every six weeks. I have never had a head of hair like this in my life. After two years the Fo-Ti cured my Von Willebrand's disease. My good cholesterol is over 100. The maximum capsules I took each day for 2.5 years was 3. About 9 months ago I switched to a liquid tincture Fo-Ti made by a local health food store. I am still working out my dosage. But all in all liquid or capsule, this herb saved my life and my sanity, it is so stressful to lose your hair....I wish I could tell the world about my findings so if you would pass the word and definitely Google Fo-Ti (domestic name for it) and the Chinese name is Ho Shu Wu. Good luck to all of us!! :)
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Hi everyone. I read this thread over a month ago when my hair loss got the best of me. A lot of people asked someone to come back and post if the hair loss eventually stopped. Well, for me it did finally stop. Thank God.

I stopped Zovia and Sprintec BCP in Nov 2011 and about a month later the hair loss began. It was so upsetting. It didn't occur to me that it was due to hormones until last month when I was researching the terrible mood swings and depression I was having.

Last month I cut off about 10 inches of hair to help with the massive amounts of hair I was finding all over the place. Then I discovered this thread. I went out and bought Fo-Ti like the above poster and I noticed a difference a week later. I can now brush my hair and run my fingers through it without a ton falling out. It's definitely worth a shot. Either my hormones have finally balanced (my mood swings have MUCH improved) or the Fo-Ti is working. Either way, I feel a lot better.

Thanks for sharing and I hope things have improved for everyone who posted.
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HERE is my story... I was on yasmin for 8 years and I stopped taking it almost 7 months ago. Right after I stopped the pills, my hair started to fall. I was losing about 300-400 hairs a day and I was absolutely terrified, especially because I had all the blood tests I could have had and there was nothing wrong with me. I cried every time I brushed or washed my hair and I was clueless on what I had to do to stop it. My hair became very thin, oily and seemed worse on the front of the scalp and on the temples.
My doctor said that it had nothing to do with pill and it was caused by stress, but there was no stress for me other than the fact that I might be going bald. I know now that what she said was rubbish and most doctors really do not see this as a real problem since it is not life threatening.
I took tons of vitamins, I used all the products on the market that promised to help but my hair was still falling and it seemed there was no way to stop it.
The only hair product that helped, but not as much as I expected, was minoxidil and the problem with it was that little hairs were growing back on the temples, only to fall back again by the time they got to a 3 cm (about 1 inch I think) length.
Only now, after 7 months, it started to get a little better, I`m still losing more than 100 hairs on washing but only 20 to 30 on daily brushing.
I`m still taking vitamins and I`m still using minoxidil and the hair that grows back does not seem to fall as fast as it did. I`m on a vegetarian diet, I`m eating all the food that is known to be good for the hair, like fat free yogurt that contains live ferments, carrots, salmon, kidney beans, apricots, honey melon and other foods high in potassium (not quite indicated for those with kidney disease), I`m adding less salt in my food and drinking more than 2 litters of water a day.
This is what I do now when it got a little better for me, I`m not saying that this might be the reason why I`m now losing less hair or it just might be due to the fact that time has passed and maybe the organism got rid of some of the toxins that I`ve been popping in for 8 years.
Sorry for my bad english, but I hope this helps you or even gives you a little hope that this will go away with time.
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I feel like there is no hope for me.  I stopped taking BC (Ortho-Tri-nessa) of May 2012 and it is now July 2012 and my hair is falling out in clumps, especially when I wash it.  I do not know what to do.  According to the doctor I'm as healthy as an Ox.  I used to have medium to thick hair, healthy (no splits ends) down to my bottom with high volume and in just two months I had to cut my hair shoulder length and limit the amount of times I wash my hair down to once a week.  I knooooooow its kinda nasty but I'm afraid of losing ALL of my hair.  I counted my hair loss in one day and it amount to approximately 368 strands.  The following day I lost 532 strands (that was after I washed it).  I'm okay with losing 100 strands a day but 500 is not okay...it is scary.  Its ashame that there are so many women on this site/blog and the pharmaceutical companies have not made any comment concerning this issue.  I'm sure of this, if we would have known that certain birth control would cause women hair fall out, not too many of us would have opted to take them.  Birth Control pills make these pharmaceutical companies billions of dollars.  They do not care about people like the women on this site/blog (some of which do not even have medical insurance) who are worried about their hair loss.  By the way, my mom and grandmama's have a head full of hair.  Ohh yeah, I forgot to mention that I tried Rogaine for women but the side effects (extreme facial swelling) cause me to stop using it.  I recently visited a Vitamin shop and purchase several supplements to attempt and stop or minimize the amount of hair from falling out.  I will hope and pray it stops.  My husband has told me not to fret but we have to admit that it can become a psychological and emotional problem that can range from stress to anxiety to depression to strain on the immune system.  Soo please, it is not fair for someone to say that it is a cosmetic issue.  By the way, we should all inform the physicians that prescribe the birth controls (BC) of the side effects post BC.  Let our voice be heard.  I will keep you posted on the outcome of the supplements I will take to help my hair grow back and prevent hundreds of hair strands to fall out.  Another thing, wish me the best.  My husband and I are going to try to have a baby.  Be well.
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My dermatologist has told me that it's not unusual to start losing hair around 3 months after going off the birth control pill. (It's similar to losing hair 3 months after giving birth). The hormone change is a shock to the body and the hair roots prepare for the hair to fall out, which happens arounds 3 months later. (This can also occur 3 months after a stressful event). For me the hair loss then went on for almost 3 months, now it seems to level out and grow back. It's been depressing but it's worth it because I had SO many side effects from the pill: migraine, hot weather sensitivity, depression, painful breasts, frost nip on my toes in winter, red veins in my eyes, cellulite. All of those are gone now.
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I have a slightly different story.  I am not sure if BC is what's causing my hair loss or not.  I have been on the pill for about 12 years stopping for a little over a year in between when trying to get pregnant and having my son.  I went back on the pill in beginning of 2009.

At the end of 2011 I noticed my hairline receding somewhat around the temple area.  It bothered me but I got over it and it seems to have stopped where it's at and not gotten worse.  Well then in May of this year I started shedding horribly.  At first I thought I just noticed more hair b/c I am growing it out for a wedding I am in in August.  Normally my hair is pretty short.  It is now almost to my shoulders.  But as time went on I know it's not from it being longer and more noticeable.  I actually started counting hairs and am losing around 150 to 200 just by washing it and styling it in the mornings.

I had my thyroid tested in May and it came back normal.  I had a pap in June and mentioned the shedding to my ob/gyn.  She said it was the BC and told me to take a vitamin E supplement every day and give it a month to see if there was any change.  I thought it did seem to slow down a bit but just the other week picked back up.  I called my ob/gyn and she had me get blood work done to check my hormones (estrogen and FSH).  I am supposed to call this afternoon to see what the results of that are.  I have a feeling they will come back normal though.

I know most of this post is about women who started the hair loss after going off the pill so I'm wondering if there's anyone out there like me who is experiencing the hair loss while still on the pill.  I haven't had any major stressful events lately either other than normal stress.  I am in school, I work part time and I also do part time work from home on the days I don't work out of the home plus I have a 4 year old who definitely likes to push buttons and aggravates me to no end!

I am really scared about my hair.  I know I could have much worse health issues than this, and am thankful I am healthy but just thinking of my hair falling out like this makes me want to cry.  It's like I've become obsessed with running fingers through my hair to see if any hairs come out (which usually they do) and researching online.  Most of the online stuff scares me with the AGA female pattern baldness stuff.  I don't have hair loss in my family on either side.  Well my dad's dad was bald but that's it.  My dad and uncles and grandparents on my mom's side all still have their hair.

Ugh....this is so annoying!
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I sincerely thank you! I am having the same constellation of symptoms correlated with stopping the birth control pill (after approx.12 yrs). I do have poor circulation and will certainly check other related issues as you mentioned. And, definitely, will spread the word!
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I am having this problem! I took Yasmin for 8 years, I stopped 3 months ago and I'm shedding like crazy, it started a few days ago and the change is notorious I'm so scared. Because of a health issue (not related to the shedding) I can't start the pill again.

I'm getting married in 4 months and I'm so worried about this, I've always had beautiful strong full hair that characterizes me since I was young and I'm afraid I won't look like myself on the big day. I know it may sound superficial but it's important to me, especially since it adds up on top of other health issues I've had to deal with this year and it's starting to take a toll on my efforts to be positive.

Can anyone tell me how long it took for the hair to be normal again? I'm seeing a doctor and I'm starting on a cocktail of supplements that are gonna help me, meanwhile, I'm afraid to even brush my hair. Thank you everyone on this forum by the way, even though I wish none of us had this problem it makes me feel like I'm not alone.

I'm gonna be telling this to any girl I come across who tells me she wants to go on the pill, this issue is the mildest on a long list of health complications the pill can bring that doctors don't tell you about when they prescribe it, my doctor told me when I was 18 I could go ahead and take the pill for years until I wanted to get pregnant, I was young and he never made it sound like it could be such a big deal. Above all I think I'm mostly angry.
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low estrogen or dht from high testosterone, or any sudden change in hormones causes hair cycle to change and fall out......also low or high thyroid hormone , and deficiencies in protein b vitamins biotin etc...
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hello maggie85 I'm woondering if  things did improved as I'm having the same problem since coming off pill. I would like to think that  there is a cure for this as this makes me worry  so much. Have you done any treatment? And how long did it take for your hair to grow back?  Thanks- April
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I have been on Depo Provera for almost 5 years. My hair was thick before. Now it is extremely thin when I get it done at the Dominicans. I have not gained weight from theDepo and my breasts have not grown. I think they lost a cup size. Could the depo shot actually be hurting my body?
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Hi just wanted to share my experience. A few years ago my doctor changed my pill from microgynon30 to cerrazette due to risks as I was a smoker at The time. Within 2 months of switching pills my hair was falling out at a rapid rate and within 6 months I had lost around 1/3 of my hair. I discontinued use of cerrazette as me and my partner wanted to start a family. During my pregnancy my hair completely recovered even better than before. Alas after pregnancy my hair fell again. This cleared up once I started to take mocrogynon30 as my form of birth control and my hair was as good as ever.
A few months ago I began to suffer with migraines - which are a possible side effect of microgynon30, so my gp switched me back to cerrazette. Within 2 months my hair began to fall again! Along with an itchy scalp. I thought about everything and came to my own conclusion after lots of research, than once oestrogen was taken away from the equation, this was when my hair loss always began. Cerrazette is a progesterone only birth control.
I am now back on microgynon30, and praying my hair restores, but I would like to reassure anyone in a similar situation, than for me, once I was back on a pill which did provide my body with oestrogen my hair improved.
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I'm going through this right now! I'm one my last three pill of only progesterone bc pill and I'm going off of it. I've lost so much hair I'm super afraid that it will not grow back. Mind you I've only been on it for 2 months. It's super scary. I know this thread is old but I'm hoping that someone will read this and may give me some hope. I've cried so much because all I can think about is going bald. I'm 28 years old I know I'm not young but it's crazy just in one month all my hair just fell out. I'm praying and hoping it's not permanent.
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