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Can’t stop pulling out hair from the roots

(33 Posts)
furrybadger Fri 02-Aug-19 20:42:43

Posting here for traffic sorry !

As title says I can’t stop pulling my hair out at the roots, like all kind of hair, I’ve been doing it for years but recently it’s become worse and it’s so embarrassing, I’m starting to get bald patches, is there anything I can do or take to stop this ? Is this a thing like do other people do this or am I just extremely weird 😩

OP’s posts: |
DrVonPatak Fri 02-Aug-19 20:44:36

Start with your GP for a referral. Trichotillomania is a recognised condition and you need help.

Utterutterutter Fri 02-Aug-19 20:44:56

It’s very common unfortunately, it’s called trichotillomania. I’d start by doing some research online and then make an appointment to see your GP flowers

Utterutterutter Fri 02-Aug-19 20:45:22

Cross-posted smile

ImpossibleNovelty Fri 02-Aug-19 20:49:15

As above. It’s a not hugely rare compulsive behaviour that you can get help with. Some evidence for both therapy and medication being helpful so don’t despair flowers Please see your GP.

furrybadger Fri 02-Aug-19 20:50:49

Thank you I’m going to ring the doctors on Monday and see if I can get an appointment and hopefully I can stop

OP’s posts: |
Nosquit Fri 02-Aug-19 20:51:33

I used to all the time as a teen because of bullying, it calmed me down. But then I got bullied more because of the bald patches.

Thankfully my hair has now grown back well enough that you can’t see any bald patches though sometimes when things really get to me I feel my hand reaching up to pull my hair again and I have to stop myself. Even typing this is making me want to do it as I’m thinking about it.

vampirethriller Fri 02-Aug-19 20:51:44

I've had it for over 25 years. It's got easier to control but I wish I had got help when it first started, make an appointment and see what they say, there's things that can help smile

Butchyrestingface Fri 02-Aug-19 20:54:16

I had/have had this from the age of 6. Definitely related to stress/boredom in my case.

Unfortunately no sooner had I more or less weaned myself off it, then hello, along came genuine alopecia!

Hopefully GP can signpost you in the right direction. smile

MyElbowIsItchy Fri 02-Aug-19 20:54:26

Another puller here! Been doing it for almost 30 years, mines is definitely triggered by anxiety, although sometimes it’s done for comfort. Have had CBT before, did help me a bit. Go to your GP and ask for a referral, good luck!

annikin Fri 02-Aug-19 20:56:26

Everyone saying go to the gp, I did this for my DD and they did precisely nothing. What have they done to help others?

pooopypants Fri 02-Aug-19 21:02:46

Trichotillomania, as PP have said. I've done / had it for years to some degree.

My GP fobbed me off after changing the subject when I mentioned it to her. I believe there's a 'treatment' (I use the word loosely) which is in the form of a food supplement available from Holland & Barrett..... the name of it escapes me right now though.
I believe that some people find anti anxiety medications helpful. I tried a bracelet, similar to a Fitbit, called Keen and that helped somewhat.

It's a recognised form of OCD and goes hand in hand with dermatillomania, the skin picking equivalent of trich

You have my absolute sympathy OP, and PP, it bloody sucks at times and stress can make it worse

lboogy Fri 02-Aug-19 21:03:51

I used to do this a lot. I'd also love eating the bulb at the root of the hair - both pubes and head hair confused

Weirdly since I've had a baby I haven't done it once.

I'd see the gp for sure. I never got the bald patches stage

AngeloMysterioso Fri 02-Aug-19 21:06:38

Another TTM sufferer here- have been varying degrees of bald since age 13. Have tried CBT and antidepressants but neither of them worked for me. Hoping that might change when my baby comes in a few months as my DH gets 6 months off work and I tend not to do it when he’s around!

GoBackToPartyCity Fri 02-Aug-19 21:11:05

You’re not alone OP! I’m currently sporting half an eyebrow after a bit of a wobble last night. Would love to know what the H&B supplement is!

NothingTraLaLa Fri 02-Aug-19 21:12:47

I do this too. I've never seen the GP about it either, but what has helped me is taking up knitting and crochet which keeps my hands busy. And when I do feel the urge, I try to restrict myself to the bits of my eyebrows that need plucking.

poptypingchef Fri 02-Aug-19 21:17:46

Absolutely a thing- as above Trichotillomania. I have 2 friends, 1 male (eyebrows), 1 female (hair) overcoming this. CBT has been helpful for one of them. In the meantime she has a great hairdresser who helps her with

AngieBolen Fri 02-Aug-19 21:41:18

But what is the treatment for this? What would the GP do?

mussolini9 Fri 02-Aug-19 21:57:28

I'm not an expert, but would suggest that CBT would help ... it is tremendously effective ay addressing many kinds of compulsive behaviours.

You poor old thing @furrybadger flowers
You're not weird, I assure you. It's simply a coping mechanism which has become engrained, & if you are able to commit to something like CBT, you will be helped to find other ways of coping while you learn how to ditch the old unwelcome habit.

Chunkers Fri 02-Aug-19 22:09:35

Apparently NAC (N-acetylcysteine) is the supplement.

Fivebyfivesq Fri 02-Aug-19 22:26:19

I have OCD and pull my eyelashes out. CBT, yoga and taking proper breaks from work (ie using all annual leave) helps. X

Diplobrat Fri 02-Aug-19 23:15:40

I'm another one who has had trichotillomania a very long time (22 years).Your GP should be able to help with a referral to CBT. I had a course and it does really help. I think the sooner you get treatment for it the better.

For me, I have been doing it such a long time (and to such an extent) it won't ever be gone. It tends to come and go at different times. I've come to terms with it and now feel much less ashamed than I used to.

ScratchyMap Fri 02-Aug-19 23:26:10

I have a similar condition- dermatillomania. I spoke to the GP after having it for about 15 years. He was really supportive and referred me for CBT.

PomBearWithAnOFRS Fri 02-Aug-19 23:28:34

I've done it for over 30 years.
I have found the only way to stop is to have my hair cut VERY short so I physically can't get hold of it to pull.
I have thin patches where it's never really grown back properly.
One thing that helps me now my hair is too short to pull out is watching videos on YouTube - there are actually loads of them on there.
I know it's weird, but it works for me confused

pooopypants Sat 03-Aug-19 08:36:18

The supplement name is NAC.... I've tried twice to upload a screen grab but the app is playing silly buggers

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