I’m not going to attach specific trigger warnings to these . . . but just know that this may contain potential trich triggers.
(It might be worth it, though.)
Trichotillomania (trick-o-til-o-MAY-nee-ah) is a disorder that causes people to pull out the hair from their scalp, eyelashes, eyebrows, pubic area, underarms, beard, chest, legs or other parts of the body, resulting in noticeable bald patches. Hair pulling varies greatly in its severity, location on the body, and response to treatment. For some people, at some times, trichotillomania is mild and can be quelled with a bit of extra awareness and concentration. For others, at times the urge may be so strong that it makes thinking of anything else nearly impossible.
People pull for all sorts of reasons and the cause (and triggers) for this behavior vary greatly from person to person.
Trichotillomania (also referred to as TTM or “trich”) is currently defined as an obsessive-compulsive related disorder but there are still questions about how it should be classified.
For many people, trich can seem to resemble a habit, an addiction, a tic disorder or obsessive-compulsive disorder.
Most recently, it is being conceptualized as part of a family of “body-focused repetitive behaviors” (BFRBs) along with skin picking and nail biting.
For a large proportion of people with trich (though not all), this is a type of behavior used to alleviate anxiety or distress.
Because of this, we always exercise compassion and reserve judgement when talking to trich clients. (We promise.)
I think we (as in, folks with hormonal, auto-immune, or chemical-induced alopecia) need to understand that folks with trich are not “bringing it upon themselves” and they deserve our understanding and awareness of their condition.
Trich thrives in silence and is amplified by shame. So we’re just going to keep on talking about it. 😉
CysterWigs may be a website that caters to women with PCOS-related hair loss . . . but we can still be supportive of women (and men!) around us who need a little understanding and love. This is a really common condition that doesn’t get talked about very often in wig circles because of the stigma. I just want y’all to know: we’ve got your back. <3
For what it’s worth:
This condition is treatable!
One really great resource is the Trichotillomania Learning Center (TLC): http://www.trich.org/index.html
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