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Tay , 08 May 2016

Tric and Bipolar

I'm 19 years old and suffer from Tric and 'Mild' Bipolar...
I've lived away from home for 5 years and can't help but think if I never moved out would I be different? Would I have stopped pulling by now?

My doctor put me on pills for my bipolar and said it should help with the pulling as well.

It didn't and I keep forgetting to take the tablets now as they didn't seem to be doing anything. Does anyone else take pills or their tric/bipolar?

1 Answer
Tasneem Abrahams
May 25, 2016

Hi Tay,

Thank you for your question. I recognize your need to understand why you have been challenged by both hair pulling and bipolar, however it is important not to focus on how a different past could have changed your situation, but rather focus on what you can do today to work toward managing your disorder. Co-occurance of hair pulling disorder with other psychiatric conditions is not uncommon and yes there are times when medication for depression/bipolar/anxiety can result in a reduction in pulling, however this is not always the case. The reality is that we still don't know exactly what causes trichotillomania as it can be different for everyone. If the symptoms of bipolar is the major trigger for pulling, then yes medication that reduces the bipolar symptoms will also reduce picking. For some people medication has no effect on pulling at all. It must also be noted that even when medication does help, all the research into the treatment of trichotillomania indicates that medication is only effective when used in conjunction with cognitive behavioral therapy if sustainable improvement is to be achieved. There are a number of articles on our blog that provides more in depth information about the use of medication in the treatment if trichotillomania, I would encourage you to explore this. I hope I have answered your question.

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