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Mumsnetters aren't necessarily qualified to help if your child is unwell. If you have any serious medical concerns, we would urge you to consult your GP.

12 year old dd1 developed bald patch

(31 Posts)
schilke Fri 10-Jun-16 10:11:08

Last night dd1 was in the kitchen and I noticed she had a bald patch on the top of her head. I thought she'd slept on it wet the day before and it had parted weirdly. I mentioned it to her and fiddled with it and realised it's a bald patch. No hair there - about the size of a 50p piece. The general nearby area of hair is quite thin.She washed her hair and she wanted me to dry it. I realised her hair is a lot thinner than it used to be.

She has chronic urticaria which has been getting worse lately. She takes daily antihistamines - 2 or 3 times the usual dose. GP said it wasn't worth investigating as they usually don't find a cause for it. I had decided to go back as it's causing her more discomfort. Is there any link?

She went with her hair in a pony tail today as we can hide the bald patch. Part of me wishes I hadn't said anything to her as she is now worrying about it, but it's probably better that I said something and we hide it than someone at school notice and point it out.

greencybermummy Fri 10-Jun-16 23:35:34

No advice sorry. Just posting to wish you and your DD1 the best. That must be horrible for a 12 yr old. I hope you can get to the bottom of it. Don't be fobbed off by GP, needs investigation I'd say.
All the best.

RedCrimson Fri 10-Jun-16 23:48:23

I have alopecia areata caused by stress. I have a bald patch about the size of a 50p roughly where my crown is. Is there any sign of new hair growth? Any fuzz? Does she pick at her hair? Like twiddle or twist it when she's sat watching the tv?
I'm able to hide mine by doing a bit of a comb over to hide it, and if anyone has noticed they haven't said anything to me. My friends and family know and I ask them every now and then to check for any signs of regrowth. The GP said it will probably eventually grow back.

I would take her to the GP. There are lotions that are on sale but don't know if they work. Massage is supposed to stimulate hair growth too.

I know it's awful for her at such a young age but she's not alone even though she may feel like it. I hope you find a solution. Also try and limit the amount of time her hair is in a ponytail as this can cause the hair to pull tight on the scalp especially if she has long hair. The same with hair clips, If her hair is long and heavy, a hair clip can pull hair out.

Blu Sat 11-Jun-16 08:09:34

I have occasional alopaecia patches, get a bald patch, then the regrowth starts.

The kind I have us an auto immune condition: the body reacting against the melanin counting in the hair, I think.

Steroid gel applied stops the patch getting bigger and speeds up regrowth but can't be used all the time as it thins the skin.

Nip to the GP and check what is causing it, and then be low key and matter of fact. My patches are hardly ever noticeable because hair falls over it, and I have quite short hair.

bloodynoris Sat 11-Jun-16 08:16:25

My hair is falling out badly and got really thin also gave bald patches. Mine is due to medication. I hate it only good thing about it is it only takes me 25 mins to dry and straighten after washing instead of close to an hour. It's definitely worth getting her check out at gp. Hope it's not long term.

Motheroffourdragons Sat 11-Jun-16 08:21:46

My son, who is now 18, used to have periods when he had bald patches. I think they were caused by stress, he used to rub his head a bit when falling asleep and it was quite worrying. So maybe your daughter is worried about something ? With our son, it was usually round about his birthday party , when he';d have to be the centre of attention etc, silly things that shouldn't have worried him, I think he was about 6 or 7. It passed, and he now has a head of hair that resembles a very thick pile carpet! I would probably go to see the GP if you're worried, there may be something that they can do.

schilke Sat 11-Jun-16 10:40:06

Thank you for all the advice. She's had a tricky start to secondary school and was very miserable at then of the first term. She's been seeing the school counsellor and she has really helped. We had a chat yesterday and she doesn't feel stressed and said she's feel happier.

There is a little bit of hair in the bald patch, but it feels very brittle and strange. The hair nearby looks thinner. She doesn't want to go to the GP, but I'll try and persuade her over the next few weeks. Until now our village practice has only had one GP, but he's 65 and now doesn't work Fridays. A female younger GP has started so I think that will be the way to go. Our main GP is lovely, but rather set in his ways of thinking. I'm also using the fact that she wanted to go back to discuss her itchy rash which is going crazy at the moment.

She's going to have her hair up at school and loose at home. The bald patch is noticeable when it's loose, so don't want that at school. She has such beautiful hair - shoulder length ginger hair. I'm jealous of it!

If it was going to get worse, would it happen quickly? It's probably just totally random and individual isn't it? She already feels self conscious due to her itchy blotchy rash. She doesn't need this on top of it. sad

AnotherTimeMaybe Sat 11-Jun-16 13:51:31

I'd personally go to he GP and ask for blood test
It could be hormonal, something with the glands who knows? It could be common but it's certainly not normal and it needs investigation. It could be something tiny that an extra vitamin or a mineral can sort out but it's be a shame not to pursuit

Good luck x

Blu Sat 11-Jun-16 15:17:18

When I am having an alopaecia episode the patch usually gets a bit bigger, over a couple of weeks, and then stops, and then sooner or later starts to regrow , generally from the outside of the patch in towards the centre.

It is often quite well established before I actually notice it, and about to grow back.

WreckTangled Sat 11-Jun-16 15:21:06

I think she needs to see a dermatologist and or immunologist. I would be asking for a referral.

There is a dermatology clinic at work and they see lots of people with urticaria and with alopecia.

I suffer with urticaria and was sent to an immunologist and then a rheumatologist with 'lupus tendencies'. It's definitely worth investigating. flowers for your dd.

sadie9 Sat 11-Jun-16 18:47:10

I posted this thread below in Preteens.
My DS13 has this patch also. Took him to GP as I thought ringworm. Does your DD wear headphones a lot? Son's bald patch is under the headphone where it sits on his head. Got Nizoral cream from Doc who wasn't sure was it Ringworm but just in case it's a fungal infection. I also put some foam pads under the headband of the headphone so they are up off the head to let air in there. Son's patch is still there and some fairer hair growing back, so it seems to have stopped coming out. Nizoral cream not easy to apply so I got Nizoral shampoo and he uses that twice a week for past few weeks.
So i have no answers for you really!

sadie9 Sat 11-Jun-16 18:49:46

My son also had bloods done for another reason (tiredness, headaches) and all was normal. His Ferritin was normal but low not needing treatment. It is 29 of a range 23 to 335.
The chemist did say there was a lot of ringworm around. So your DD's could be that. The scalp ringworm causes bald patches.

TheCaptainsCat Sat 11-Jun-16 22:48:47

Do you think it could possibly be trichotillomania?

I struggled with it from ages 12-20, and your daughter's age plus the unhappiness at school made me wonder. When my parents noticed I had a bald spot I denied furiously that I'd done it myself, which I think is pretty common. Either way, a visit to the GP sounds the way to go.

schilke Mon 13-Jun-16 13:23:30

Thank you all. We'll go to the GP and mention both issues.

chillichoclove Wed 15-Jun-16 08:46:31

Hi - urticaria and hair loss could be auto immune disease. Or just stress. But definitely worth considering by gp and referral to rheumatology to check it out. Hope it gets sorted soon

mrsdane Wed 15-Jun-16 08:59:05

I had alopecia areata at a similar age, but lower down my scalp - same size patches though. I ended up having a steroid injections to stimulate regrowth and it worked, but my God it hurt.

I had various patches throughout my teens and found Nourkrin ( really good at helping regrowth. It's not cheap but I found (or felt, may have been a placebo effect) it was worth it. I wouldn't underestimate the impact it'll have on her self esteem, and try not to make a big deal out of it. I was very self conscious about it and it wasn't until I was a fair bit older that I realised how common it was.

schilke Wed 15-Jun-16 10:14:02

Made an appointment for 24th June. Unfortunately female GP is away until then and dd1 really wants to see her. Last night I realised the patch has got bigger. It is not smooth bald as there are spiky hairs in there. The scalp looks a bit dry and there are a few red blotches - not spots or scabs just more like marks.

She was upset, but relieved when I took a photo of her hair up in a pony tail and she could see the bald patch was hidden.

cestlavielife Fri 17-Jun-16 20:37:13

There is still hair there...but ask for dermatologist referral

schilke Fri 24-Jun-16 12:23:08

GP had referred her to a dermatologist for rash and bald patch. She called it alopecia areata. There is a little circular bald patch close to the main bit - this bit has no hair. She mentioned steroid cream but said better to wait for the dermatologist.

Witchend Fri 24-Jun-16 12:54:44

Is she pulling it out? I went through a stage of pulling it round there and ended up with a (much smaller) bald patch. It was enough for the hairdresser to notice but not usually other people.

Hislopssloppyseconds Fri 24-Jun-16 12:59:09

I thought possible trichotillomania (hair pulling) straightaway, it would appear spiky as the new hair is coming through.

schilke Fri 24-Jun-16 13:42:41

GP didn't mention it. It went from a very small patch to the size it is in that picture in 4 days. She now has another patch which is very small, but totally hair free. Anyway we'll wait and see what the dermatologist says. I have checked her bed and bin for hair in case she was pulling it out, but nothing there. We had a chat about pulling it out and she said she doesn't. I have noticed her touching her hair in that area, but she says it's because it feels weird now. She's also checking that the bald patch is covered when her hair is in a pony tail.

GP wondered if the 2 things were connected.

Witchend Fri 24-Jun-16 16:39:38

When I pulled it out I pulled it out one by one. There wouldn't be any in the bin. sad

incywinci Fri 24-Jun-16 16:42:19

This happened to me when I was a teen and I certainly didn't pull anything out. I think it was caused by stress. It grew back thankfully.

schilke Fri 24-Jun-16 16:50:45

sad I just don't think she'd have been able to pull out the amount that disappeared in 4 days, but it's something to bear in mind. Also, the patch hasn't changed in size since then. So it would mean she'd pulled loads out in 4 days and then nothing. Did you tell your parents you were pulling your hair out?

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