November 30 2006, 3:32 pm PT | Posted in: Hair Loss Causes
I am just 15 and i am male. About 3 years ago i got nits and bought some conditioner for it. My scalp reacted with it and i got dandruff. My peers teased me about my dandruff and i started frantically rubbing my hair to get rid of it. When i was 14 it turned into pulling hair from the very centre of my scalp. i didnt want to pull my hair and get bald but i had an urge and got satisfaction out of pulling. i have now got a small circle of baldness on my scalp and have managed to stop pulling from there but now im pulling from the back of my neck and behind my ears and it is thinning out there. I require help and advice and want to know:if i leave it will it grow back to normal?
This condition is called trichotillomania, which is an impulse disorder characterized by the urge of pulling out hair from scalp, eyelashes, eyebrows, beard, nose, pubic area, or any other area in the body. It is most often related to obsessive-compulsive disorders. Surgical treatments for hair restoration are usually not indicated, and the best treatment would be through psychotherapy and behavioral treatment. You should be seen and treated by a psychiatrist. If you can stop pulling hair, it will usually grow back in a few months with no further treatments, but if you have stopped pulling out your hair and the hair does not return, then transplants are a relatively fool proof way of handing it provided that you do not go back to pucking out the hair again and again.
Dr. Richard Shiell wrote the following about this disease: “By far the most common of patients with this disease are children of both sexes and as trichotillomania is an OCD, where stress seems to play a role, most of the kids just “grow out of it” with no lasting problems. Success rate very high (probably over 90 %)
Some do not grow out of it however and a small percentage of the females go on to be chronic pluckers. They associate the plucking with episodes of stress but I do not know if this has been verified scientifically. Most of the cases I see fall into this category and have plucked each hair so many times that the follicles in the patch cease to grow somewhere along the line. In other cases, not so long standing, the hair is short , vellus-like and snowy white in the plucked area. It is this group of women who acknowledge the plucking (past or present) and who are seeking help that you will have some success after transplantation. I cannot give you a figure for success as I have lost contact with all of these patients over the years. Psychologists tell me that medication will assist those members of this group who find it difficult to refrain from plucking.”