What is Trichotillomania?


Trichotillomania is characterized by the repetitive pulling on one’s hair resulting in noticeable hair loss. Patients typically experience an increasing sense on tension immediately before pulling out the hair or when attempting to resist the behavior. Pleasure, gratification or relief is felt upon hair pulling.


What are symptoms of Trichotillomania?

Common symptoms and behaviors of trichotillomania include recurrent pulling out of one’s hair as well as repeated attempts to decrease or stop hair pulling. The pulling can occur from any region and may vary, but common sites are the scalp, eyebrows, eyelashes, pubic region, face, body, and legs. Avoidance of situations in which others might notice the hair loss, such as getting hair cuts or going swimming, is also common.


Trichotillomania is often associated with difficulties in family and/or other interpersonal relationships as well as other mental disorders such as depression, and excoriation (skin-picking) disorder. Children/adolescents may begin pulling after experiencing problems with their friends.