Trichotillomania Blog

New tech for Hair pulling awareness and monitoring

Trichotillomania or hair pulling disorder is often triggered by stress and anxiety. Hair pulling can sometimes be a subconscious action; sufferers of the disorder usually have no inkling of their actions and often do it in their sleep. Sufferers often, experience feelings of guilt and embarrassment for their pulling. Therapists therefore, encourage pullers to develop an increased awareness of the times of day, emotional states, and other factors that promote pulling, in an effort to control the behaviour.

Dear Trich

Hair pulling disorder or Trichotillomania is an obsessive compulsive disorder characterized by the compulsive urge to pull out one’s own hair. Sufferers of the disorder may pull out the hair on their head, or from other places on their bodies. The compulsion to pull is severe and sufferers experience feelings of anxiety and tension until they do pull, claiming to feel a release or sense of relief after pulling. The constant pulling is habitual and can result in bald spots, most commonly on the scalp. Individuals are understandably self-conscious, because of the shame and stigma associated with the disorder. Sufferers agree that explaining the disorder is embarrassing and complicated, they report a lack of information the topic and support for their struggle.

Online treatments and resources for trichotillomania

Body-focused repetitive behaviors (BFRBs) such as trichotillomania are of the most under-diagnosed psychological disorders due to the intense shame and embarrassment people who engage in compulsive hair pulling behavior experiences. Although the efforts of advocacy groups such as the then named Trichotillomania Learning Centre (TLC), now named the TLC Foundation for Body-Focused Repetitive Behaviors (BFRBs) and the Canadian BFRB Support Network (CBSN) has been instrumental in increasing awareness of the condition, probably the more significant contribution they ahve made is help people feel less alone. Technology has given us the gift of anonymity when seeking answers to our most personal questions and our darkest secrets. But it also gives us a window into a world we might not otherwise have known existed.

Trichotillomania Learning Center gets a makeover


Here at we try our best to bring you the latest news and research about compulsive hair pulling and related disorders. In countless blog posts and articles there has been a resource we have referenced, cited and recommended for its great work in advocating and spreading awareness about not only trichotillomania, but all body-focused repetitive behaviors (BFRBs). The Trichotllomania Learning Center, or TLC for short, has been a source of support and hope for thousands of people around the world for 25 years!

Medications that may aggravate hair pulling

Trichotillomania (TTM) or compulsive hair pulling disorder can result in balding and is often very distressing to the individual. Many experience social and/or functional impairment. While it is still unclear what the exact cause of trich and other body focused repetitive behaviors (BFRBs) are, research suggests that there may be a strong neuro-biological component. Reneta Slikboer from Swinburne University of Technology in Melbourne analyzed about 12 studies to find out how selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) anti-depressant drug called fluoxetine works for some patients. She conducted a meta-analysis and was shocked to find out that the medicine is not of much use for treating TTM. She claimed that the medicine might even increase the symptoms. Hence more research into the area is suggested.

Teens Dealing With Trichotillomania (Hair Pulling Disorder)

The teenage years are an emotionally tumultuous time in anyone’s life across all cultures. In psychology the development of a healthy ego is fundamental to healthy functioning in society. According to one of the pioneers in psychological theory, Erik Erikson, the ego develops as it successfully resolves crises that are distinctly social in nature. The teen years is when we transition between childhood and adulthood and is therefore a very important stage in our development. According to Erikson, the primary task in adolscence is resolving the internal conflict known as identity versus role confusion. In trying to establish an identity teenagers are more susceptible to peer pressure and social norms, and are therefore more vulnerable to the negative messaging we are bombarded with in the media on a daily basis.

The 2016 TLC conference is here!

Every year we post details about the annual Trichotillomania Learning Center conference and this year is no exception. These conferences are an amazing opportunity for people from all walks of life, of all ages to come together in unity against the disorders that are impacting millions of people's lives world wide. Body-focused repetitive behaviors (BFRBs) do not discriminate. Research has shown that BFRBs like trichotilllomania and excoriation (skin picking) disorder affect children as young as toddlers right up to the elderly in their final years. There have been reported diagnoses in in countries on every continent on the planet.

Participate in Trich Research - be part of the advancement of knowledge

The Trichotillomania Learning Centre (TLC) has always been at the forefront of research in the field of body focused repetitive behaviors (BFRBs) such as trichotillomania. And they continue to make strides in buidling awareness and upskilling health professionals across the globe to better serve those who suffer from these debilitating conditions. One of the ways in which they do so is to facilitate the matching of volunteers with the relevant research studies in the field. If you are keen to play your part in the advancement of understanding and the development of effective treatments for trichotillomania then you should visit the TLC website where there are regular updates of new research being conducted worldwide. Here is a roundup of the online surveys currently underway that you could potentially contribute to:

13-yr old trichster's moving poem

There's a bug in my coffee is a blog by a Marie Larson, 47 year-old,  working wife and mom to two girls living in Chicago. Marie blogs about all kinds of interesting topics, and on a few occasions this included the topic of trichotillomania. Marie's oldest daugher, who is 13-years old has trichotillomania. It is very stressful for a parent then their child is not feeling well, be it a common cold or serious illness. Our instinct is to protect our children, to comfort them in times of need, and to save them when things go wrong. So when we are not able to 'fix' the problem for our child, we feel helpless and powerless and we are left with nothing but stress and fear.

NeuroReplete for Trich

Although cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is the most effective treatment for the sustainable management of compulsive hair pulling, other mechanisms such as change in diet or medication have also been found to be effective when used in conjunction with CBT. CBT is not a quick fix and when you are dealing with a tormenting condition, be it physical or psychological, it is natural to desire immediate results. Research in the pharmaceutical industry has made huge progress in many different fields, providing immediate from a variety of conditions that people struggled with for years. However in the field of body focused repetitive behaviors (BFRBs) there has not been any dramatic advances in terms of the treatment of conditions such as trichotillomania. Possibly part of the reason is that BFRBs in themselves are still poorly understood.


Online Test for Trichotillomania

Find Out The Severity of Your Hair Pulling With This Free Online Test