• What is Trichotillomania?

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Did you ever have a secret that you kept to yourself?  A secret so private that if anyone found out you would be horrified? For many, the answer is yes.

Trichotillomania or compulsive hair pulling can be one of those secrets. My friend, Amy Burzinski, works with individuals suffering from Trichotillomania and she gave us some insight into the disorder.

Trichotillomania (TTM or “Trich”) is a disorder that causes people to pull out the hair from their scalp, eyelashes, eyebrows, or any other parts of the body, resulting in noticeable bald patches. Trichotillomania is a type of body focused repetitive behavior or BFRB for short. People who have trich will describe a strong “urge” to pull. The urge can be so strong that it can almost feel like an attack- unrelenting and demanding attention before anything else can be done.

Unfortunately, there is a lot of misinformation about Trich. Many who suffer from this disorder, do so in silence due to the shame and embarrassment one feels about being exposed and having to deal with people’s reactions.

So let’s get the facts. The reality is that Trich is not about someone trying to deliberately hurt themselves or others. Many with this disorder are high functioning intelligent achieving individuals. Trich is not an obsessive-compulsive disorder and isn’t the result of trauma, although both can co occur. Compulsive hair pulling along with other body focused repetitive behaviors is a complex behavior that affects one in fifty people! Pretty common. Most importantly, Trich is one part of a person. It does not define who one is.

At my salon we work with many guests who have trich, by helping them find a hair replacement solution for their hair loss. When using one of our custom integration or full cranial prosthesis, combined with therapy and support, guests have been able to decrease and in some circumstances, completely cease their urge to pull and their hair is able to grow back underneath the hair system. Bethany is a great example of how our solution worked for her.

There are also treatments and support groups that can help.

Amy Burzinski is a therapist at A Plus Solutions and works with both children and adults to conquer their compulsive hair pulling through psychotherapy, consultations, and training. Through Cognitive Behavioral Treatment (a therapeutic approach that focuses on a person’s thoughts, feelings and behaviors) and the Comprehensive Behavioral (C0mB) Model (uses the existing treatment options, expands on them and individualizes the treatment to include a wide range of behaviors) Amy has been able to help those suffering, stop.

Charlene Blacer and Help Me 2 Stop, a non-profit organization, are working to build awareness about trich and connecting those who are suffering from pulling hair to stylists who want to help them find a cure.  This supportive community is working to help others fight the urge.

There is no magic pill, no quick fix. What does exist is recovery. Treatment can work to support one to find a way to live life to its fullest and not let trich get in the way. Something we all deserve to experience.

If you would like to learn more about the right solution for your individual hair loss please email or call me to set up a private and personal consultation with one of my consultation specialists. Or to get your free copy of my Personal Hair Loss Evaluation eBook Guide, which helps determine your loss and best-personalized solution, all you need to do is sign up for my blog!

Remember…Beauty Begins Within

– Jeffrey Paul 

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