Could Relaxers be the Cause of Some Serious Health Issues in Women?

Chemical relaxer on young girl

When I would get my hair relaxed on a regular basis, I used to suffer from migraine headaches. I'm talking skull-thumping headaches. In no way am I a doctor but, I think I am smart enough to realize that there may have been an association between the chemical products I would use in my hair and the effects they would potentially have on my body. I was rocking a short, Halle Berry-type hairstyle for almost a year.

One of the reasons I decided to go for the short cut was because my hair had become badly damaged. When I first cut my hair, I actually found myself getting my hair relaxed more often than when my hair was longer.

My stylist would faithfully relax the sides and my "kitchen" almost every visit (approximately every 2-4 weeks). I also had the front of my hair dyed in a bright blonde color, which of course involved having to bleach my hair to get the best results with the blonde.

With all the chemicals merging atop my head, my hair began to break off even more and I only had about 2 inches. And there was at least one inch of damaged, split, dry hair.

I kept my hair relaxed for almost 20 years. I started getting really bad headaches around the time I was 17. They would come and last for about 3-4 days, feeling like my head was 20 times larger than it was. I would also get headaches whenever it was time for a touch-up.

When new growth would come out of my scalp, it would literally hurt. My stylist told me this was my hair's way of telling me when it was ready for a touch-up. Boy, was she wrong.

My physician was unable to diagnose the cause of my headaches, suggesting that I change my diet or wear a protective cover over my computer screen. My full-time job required a lot of time in front of the computer but no matter what I did, the migraines would sporadically return.

When I decided to stop relaxing my hair, one of the first things I noticed was that I was experiencing these migraines a lot less often than before. In the 10 months that went without a relaxer, I experienced only one moderate headache that only lasted a couple of hours. Is this simply a coincidence? Perhaps. Or, maybe not.

Have you suffered with any health related problems that may have been associated with the use of the chemicals or toxins found in hair, skin and beauty products?

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