Living in secrecy with any condition that affects your health or well being can be very lonely. People living with mental or emotional disorders are particularly vulnerable to isolation because of the negatively perceived stigma attached to conditions of the mind.
Trichotillomania is characterised by an irresistible urge to tug at, or pull out one’s hair. While the scalp is the most common site affected by this behaviour, any part of the body where hair grows is vulnerable, including the eyelashes. While the act of pulling the hair out can have a relaxing or anxiety-reducing effect, it can also be physically quite painful.
Epidemiologic studies for trichotillomania have been sorely lacking in the field of scientific research, but there is a growing recognition of the need for prevalence studies to understand how often trichotillomania occurs in different groups of people and why. This information is vital in developing prevention strategies for those groups identified as being at-risk, and management of those already challenged by the condition.
Trichotillomania is a BFRB (body focused repetitive behavior) disorder and one that is not very well understood by the public. If you are suffering from this hair pulling disorder, then you might feel like there is nothing out there that can help you.