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Hair pulling/Trichotillomania

Does anyone else here have this form OCD? Do you take medication, and does it help? I have pulled my hair out for years. I do not pull enough out to get bald spots. I have learned to move around. I also do not eat the hair. I feel around for a hair I think feels kinky or unsmooth. Then I pluck it out. Look at it and feel it some more. Then I break it in half, and start all over again. I wonder how common this is???? Thanks

Wed. May 30, 10:51am

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I have trich. It started around 11-12, and began to be less of a problem at 38. Now in my 40s, I don't do it at all. I suspect, therefore, a hormonal influence in all this, since 11-38 is probably when my reproductive hormones began to increase, peak and achieve steady state, and now, as I approach menopause (my mom was 48 when she was done, so Im guessing i'm 7-8 years away from it myself), I figure the hormone mix is changing for me.

I'm pleased to say that althouh at times in my life I did have bald areas, I do not seem to have damaged my follicles.

Good luck. I know how painful and frustrating this condition is. And while I did say that I suspect hormone involvement, I also think it's OCD - so a combo of OCD perhaps trigered by certain hormones (at least for me)

Wednesday, May 30, 2007, 4:54 PM

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Thanks for your input. I am 42, and yes, I do think it is becoming less of a problem. You may be on to something with the whole hormonal thing...

Wednesday, May 30, 2007, 9:23 PM

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4:54 here.

I'm glad to hear it's lessening. I was SUCH a puller and then, wham - it stopped. It's amazing how hormones/chemicals can have such an immediate effect. For example, when I was pregnant wiht my eldest child (i have 2), I was so horribly sick (all day - never wanted food, got ill sometimes even 8-12 times a day) and then onne day i woke up (week 15) and felt FINE. It was so strange, but that's how it was - the hormone mix shifted after the first trimester was done, and the placenta had been formed and my body reacted.

I was just noticing how FINALLY I look balanced on both sides of my head because the hair that always got pulled is nowlong enough to look like a legitamate layered row and not an odd "why is your hair cut so strange".

2 yrs ago when my father was dying, I must have been tugging a lot out, because I noticed after he died that I had thinning in that area and some of the pieces were short (I'd break instead of tug). I was miserable - I mean, I'd just lost my dad, and I had this problem. And that' also when I decided that i'd conquer the habit once and for all. I turned 40 soon after, and noticed that the impulse just wasn't there anymore.

Thursday, June 14, 2007, 11:30 AM

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i pick my toe nails constantly, eagerly and shamefully. i wonder if this is related to the topic?

Thursday, June 14, 2007, 11:33 AM

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there are medications that work specifically for trichotillomania. ask your family practice doctor what they are and if you could start on one.

Thursday, June 14, 2007, 11:35 AM

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A lot of the meds are SSRIs which I have had bad luck with. I'm the 11:30 poster, and like I said for me, it's lessening naturally.

11:33 - yes, that is related. I have relatives who eyebrow pull and I personally also used to chew on the skin near my nails. I stopped doing that in my 20s

Thursday, June 14, 2007, 12:16 PM

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