Trichotillomania or hair pulling can be a very isolating condition. This is a habit causes a person to feel compelled to pull their hair. This can be the hair in any part of the body –  the heads, the eyebrows and even the eyelashes. The person experiences an extreme urge to pull their hair which is accompanied by a build up of tension. They then feel a huge relief after they pull their hair. This can effect children and adults. Hair is pulled out from the root, sometimes in large clumps sometimes one at a time. If you have pulled your hair because of feelings of anxiety or if you find that pulling your hair relieves these feelings then you may be suffering from Trichotillomania.

Shame and guilt

People with Trichotillomania often feel ashamed or guilty about their actions and try to cover it up. It has a huge impact on self confidence and self esteem. There are lots of theories as to why someone would do this. Some feel that hair pulling becomes a type of addiction. Others view it as a form of self harm and for others there is a clear relationship with stress and anxiety. Pulling the hair relives these symptoms. Hair pulling can also occur when in states of relaxation such as reading a book or watching the TV.


Hair pulling can have a effect on every aspect of a person’s life from forming a relationship to finding a job.


Research points to talking therapies as the most effective treatment for Trichotillomania. Treatments such as psychotherapy, CBT and hypnosis can free people from this compulsion. Hypnotherapy not only addresses the cause of the problem, but also reduces symptoms of stress and anxiety.

If you would like to know more about Trichotillomania you can visit NHS Choices. To keep  up to date please follow me on Twitter and Facebook.


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