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Hi, my 15 years old daughter is acting very disturbing. I don’t know what is wrong with her, she keeps pulling out eyelashes and eyebrows uncontrollably. A doctor said she has trichotillomania, but I don’t know anything about this disorder. Can anyone please give me some information about it?

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I suffered from trichotillomania in high school. Fortunately, it didn’t last long, because I would lose all my hair. I was pulling out everything from my eyelashes and eyebrows to my hair. I had areas on my scalp with absence of hair. It looked terrible, and I was very embarrassed, but it wasn’t my fault because this is not an intentional behavior. Trichotillomania comes along with anxiety, and just like you can’t control anxiety seizures, you can’t control hair pulling either. Every time when I pulled a little hair, I would feel relief and pleasure. I could compare trichotillomania to smoking. When a smoker is nervous and anxious, a cigarette will help him calm down, but he will deal with consequences later.
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xena--- how did you stop?
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Hi, I'm 25 yrs old and have suffered with trichotillomania off and on since the age of 12. I don't know why it started, or why I do it. It's an impulsive behavior that you may not even realize you're doing. It's tough....it was very bad for me in my early teenage years, then when I gained more confidence and friends it stopped...I think because I was so motivated to be socially accepted in the new school I attended and I was so concerned with my image. I don't know how I stopped it, but during middle and high school I had beautiful thick locks of hair. Then I hit a time in my life where I was very stressed..with an abusive husband, financial troubles, had children...and it got BAD. I had to try and hide the bald spots on my head. I got a divorce and things got better and the trich got better....but then again, 2 yrs later it's picked back up. I want to stop, and even as I'm PULLING the hair I will think of how badly I don't want to be doing it, but I seem unable to stop it. By constantly keeping it on my mind, I am able to control myself sometimes. When I catch myself doing it, I remove my hands from my hair and occupy them with something else (i.e. drawing, writing). It works sometimes....I have also suffered from depression and anxiety disorders, and from the reading I've been doing it seems these things go hand in hand. I have spoken to a doctor about it once....a therapist. She said it was amazing that I was able to stop it on my own even for a short period of time. Most of the time I think people need to go through therapy for it. I do it until it starts to get noticeable, then every time I look in the mirror and see my thin hair, it reminds me how badly I need to get control of myself. I don't know if this helps or not, but at least you know she's not the only one, and it can be controlled.
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I am 24 and my trich started around when I was 12, too. I had a noticeable blad spot on the top of my head when I was 14, but I got better through college. Law school really triggered the pulling again, so now I use hair extensions to cover it up. I long for the days of my own long thick hair, though.

The Trichotillomania Learning Center (TLC) (google it) is oh so extremely helpful -- with lots of support and online resources. Check it out.

Also, be supportive. The pulling gets worse the more she gets ridiculed -- especially by family members.
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Hi, my name's Grace and I have been pulling out my eyelashes and eyebrows for years. Actually around 8 years. I have been reading up on what causes it, and it brings me a little pleasure every time I get one out. I really need some encouragement right now, from those who are going thru it right now, or have already. PLEASE HELP! :$
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Hi, my name is DJ, and I have had trich for I know of over 13 years. It started when I was a teenager and continues to this day. I am now 30 and I pull everyting from my eyelashes, my eyebrows, to my hair on my head. I also have a habit of picking at anything that gets a bump. I have scars all over my body from picking on bumps. I also eat the roots if they are still attached to the hair. I feel crazy for doing it but I cannot stop. My husband sees me and tells me to stop, but I only stop until he's not looking and I start right back up again. Is there any medication or anything I can take to help me? I can't do anything cute with my hair because of the huge bald spots I have. :cry:
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