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Is it normal to lose hair?

Hair loss generally begins between days 17 and 21 after the first chemotherapy infusion, including for those using the cold cap. Some hair loss is considered normal. The cold cap works by protecting growing hair follicles from chemically-induced alopecia, but does not prevent chemotherapy from reaching the hair roots 100%. Any hairs that are at their most advanced stage of growth, and therefore older and less resistant, generally fall out after the first chemotherapy treatment, rather than falling out over time. This gives rise to a phase of hair loss that can be frightening, but which is normal and will fade when these older hairs have finished falling out. Under normal circumstances, a person generates around 100 to 120 new hairs a day and loses around the same amount, even without alopecia-inducing medication. Hair loss is an integral part of the natural hair growth cycle. Of course, we don't pay much attention to it in everyday life, but in the context of chemotherapy, we pay a lot of attention to it, which can amplify our perception that the loss is significant. It should be noted that people who wash their hair once a week may notice a more significant loss during this wash than those who wash their hair every day, whose loss is then spread over all the washes. It's important to remember that each individual has a different metabolism, which means that hair loss can occur at different times. The use of cold caps does not guarantee specific results, and it is impossible to predict what the outcome will be. Some people can experience noticeable hair loss without going completely bald, but few are unable to camouflage the loss to maintain a certain discretion and avoid having a "chemotherapy head". Remember that without the cold caps, the probability of alopecia is 100%. Protecting hair follicles for healthy, rapid regrowth is another important consideration. So is reducing your chances of permanent alopecia (see Decision Support Guide). Some people may also notice increased hair loss after the end of chemotherapy. It takes a minimum of 2 to 3 months after the last chemotherapy infusion for the situation to stabilize. If time allows before the start of chemotherapy, one trick is to collect the hair lost during normal washing and the hair left on the brush during the same period. This will give you an idea of your usual hair loss and allow you to compare whether there has been an increase (or not). Taking before, during and after photos, from the front, the side, the back and the top, gives you a reference point.


For tips and advice, check out the <a href="https://gardetescheveux-staging.netlify.app/en/blogue/" target="_blank">Hair Tips</a> section of our Blog.

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