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When Stress Leads To Hair Pulling
Stress can lead to hair pulling because people who battle trichotillomania use hair pulling as a coping mechanism for the anxiety that stress causes.
When I’m under stress, one of the first things I want to do is pull my hair because it’s how I’ve dealt with it most of my life.
A lot of the times in the past, I would be pulling my hair not even realizing it because I was too busy being stressed out.
My thoughts become conusmed with anxiety-ridden images that are really hard to control.
These thoughts turn into a full blow panic attack if I don’t get a hold of myself.
Once I’m in panic attack mode, it almost always leads to hair pulling as a way to cope with it.
In order to recognize the indicators for an anxiety attack, you have understand the symptoms of stress first.
Each person handles stress differently; but some of the more common symptoms include short term memory, confusion, difficulty concentrating and racing thoughts.
When an anxiety attack has reached it’s high point, there’s this feeling of being out of control and losing a grip on yourself.
A lot of times a person in this state doesn’t even realize it’s happening and begins pulling their hair as a way to cope with the anxiety.
Stress turns into anxiety and that anxiety causes the hair pulling in people with trichotillomania.
Trichy Stress Factors
There are a lot of factors that cause stress but I would say that provision is at the top of the list!
Anytime finances are in a pinch, that causes a TON of issues.
All the circumstances surrounding most people involve money.
How do you pay for your house, your food, your clothes, your gas….?
There are a whole host of things that are attached to money and when money is low or non-existent, it’s a huge burden on a person and their family.
Most marriages end in divorce because of financial problems; it causes stress in relationships and breaks up homes.
Working too much can be a huge stress in a lot of people’s lives.
I definitely work WAY TOO MUCH and it’s a huge player in my stress levels.
When I spend more time doing my job I’m spending less time on myself and with my family.
That causes a breakdown in my most important relationships, which leads to a TON of stressful, heart breaking situations.
Taking On Too Much
It seems that more women have trichotillomania than men when you look at the numbers and that’s because women take on a LOT.
Maybe it’s because we feel like we have too, or we really do have too?
In general, we’re taking on a lot of responsibilities, right?
We’re human beings, not human doings.
No one can handle the world on their shoulders, including myself but it sometimes feels like that’s what’s happening.
Our brains are not created to take on a ton of information like a bunch of robots, that will cause too much stress.
I know for me, I get obsessive and don’t know when to stop, I take on more than I can handle All. The. Time.
I need to step back and really assess my situations more and let God handle what I cannot do myself, I know this but it’s hard once I reach a certain level of anxiety over a situation.
Doctors – Yes or No?
If you go to the doctor and tell them your stress is leading to anxiety attacks and causing you to pull your hair out – most likely you’re going to get a prescription!
Medication is almost always the answer because medical school is funded by the pharmaceutical industry.
While the medication might give a head change for a little while, there are almost always unwanted side effects that are ruining your physical and mental well-being in the long run.
Why treat something with a medication that will cause a breakdown in some other part of your body?
A lot of times a medication only works for a little while and then you need more medication or another medication on top of the medication you’re already taking.
If you do end up going to the doctor, instead of pharmaceuticals, ask for a referral to a therapist that specializes in anxiety disorders.
If you do want some sort of relief, try CBD oil before taking prescription drugs, it’s all-natural and calms nerves fast!
Reducing Stress That Leads To Hair Pulling
Ultimately it comes down to preventative maintenance because no one can avoid stress altogether.
Life happens and shit happens and we have to deal with it.
But there are ways we can de-stress ourselves a bit so that it doesn’t lead into a full blown anxiety attack.
Excerise will almost always clear your head, especially outdoors.
Put on some headphones with your favorite songs and workout, run, bike ride or do something physical like jumping on a trampoline or swimming.
It’s been scientifically proven that exercise reduces stress naturally.
I have never been one of those people who can “work out” but I force my ass to get out of the house and walk for 30 minutes every day.
If it’s really hot (because I live in the desert) I will go for a swim in the pool. I do something physically active in order to beat stress.
Exercise almost always keeps my hands busy too, which means I can’t pull my hair.
Let Your Mind Rest
Give your mind a break either with some quiet time on a walk or listen to some relaxing music.
I like to listen to a sermon or let my bible app read the Psalms to me, especially Psalm 23.
Our mind is where the real battle is taking place and it’s important to take some time to let it wind down.
Even if there are a million things happening, you don’t have to think about them 24/7.
Taking time to shut down all those demanding thoughts will take down your stress level by volumes.
Find a Hobby
There has to be something creative you can pour yourself into?
Hobbies make us feel good about ourselves and give us a little purpose and motivation.
I like to blog, but it can be ANY hobby.
Coloring, knitting, building with Lego bricks, designing, fishing, playing guitar, golfing, woodworking, gardening…
Find a creative outlet to help you alleviate stress and choose something that keeps your hands busy so there’s no hair pulling taking place!
Keep a Trich Journal
Grace & Faith Overcoming Trichotillomania Journal: 42-Day Health Tracking Journal & Devotional
One of the things that helped me combat trichotillomania head on was keeping a journal.
I made this trichotillomania journal that had a bunch of scriptures to combat the bad thoughts I was dealing it.
It also had a place to track all the things I was doing during the day that pertained to my trich.
For me, it was a big help because I was able to pin point stressful areas in my life and what was causing them.
Take your stress from a 10 to a 2 in minutes with CBD oil.
This stuff is amazing and it’s overall a healthy choice because CBD oil is a plant, not poison.
It’s made from hemp and it’s safe, legal and has no unwanted side effects.
A high quality CBD oil can give you that same “head change” that medications will but without causing harm to the rest of your body.
It’s become very popular as a natural remedy for stress and anxiety and you don’t need any special prescription or medical card to get it, it’s available online.
I’ve been taking it for months and it’s amazing the difference I feel, it’s definitely reduced my stress and I don’t nearly pull as much as a result.
It’s especially important to maintain your stress levels when you have a tendency to pull your hair.
Just like a diabetic should avoid sugar, a trichster should avoid stress.
There’s no magic pill, but CBD oil and some self-care will go a long way.
Allyson OBrien says
Your story and posts are inspiring. I love being able to read about someone who is like me and that I can relate to, as well as get advice from!
Thank you so much, I really appreciate you saying that.