Did you know that trichotillomania has been known to even affect some of Hollywood’s biggest stars? To those who suffer from trichotillomania, this may bring you some comfort in knowing you are most definitely not alone. People of all backgrounds can experience this psychological trigger - including the most popular actors and singers. So what causes trichotillomania exactly and which celebrities are afflicted with it? Read more below to find out.
What is Trichotillomania?
Trichotillomania, in short, is a hair-pulling disorder. It is most commonly associated with OCD (obsessive-compulsive disorder), as well as anxiety. Interestingly enough, this hair pulling tick can apply to any hair on ones body. For instance, trichotillomania can apply to other hairs, like eyelashes or arm hair, not exclusively scalp hair.
If you believe you may have trichotillomania it is best you seek professional help. It is also noteworthy to mention that occasionally pulling out a strand of hair doesn’t always equate to trich; trichotillomania is more so a repetitive behavior that borders addiction. Trichotillomania can effect social functioning. Those with trich are often treated through counseling, as well as medications - like antidepressants.
Mental Health and Trichotillomania Treatment
The stigma around mental health further surrounds trichotillomania. As any other chronic illness or disorder, it is never in good fashion to make jokes or make blasphemous remarks about something you do not face yourself. Many of those who suffer from trichotillomania discuss the issues they face with self-confidence and mental health due to the tick. Empathizing and learning about intricacies of such disorders is a good step in learning to be a supporter to those who are implicated with such.
Examples of Celebrities with Trichotillomania
The following stars have openly discussed suffering from trichotillomania and how it affects their daily life and mental health.
Victoria’s Secret model Sarah Sampaio has outwardly spoken about the effects trichotillomania has had on her - which is especially heightened in moments under stress. She has discussed her habit of pulling out her eyelashes and eyebrow hair since the age of 15 on social media, in which she was met with an abundance of support from fellow sufferers of trichotillomania. She has also discussed the effects trich has on one’s mental health and self-confidence; encouraging others to show more understanding and care to those suffering from the disorder. Sarah herself has raised awareness and money towards TLC, an organization supporting those with body-focused repetitive behaviors (BFRBs), by auctioning off tickets to the prestige Victoria’s Secret fashion show.
Olivia Munn’s hair pulling habit began after suffering from OCD & anxiety stemming from her childhood. She faced verbal abuse from her step-father growing up, as well as stress from moving often as a military family. More recently, her anxiety also stems from frequently being in the spotlight. She has admitted to starting to pull out her eyelashes at age 26 during interviews. Munn states, “OCD comes from a place of needing to feel safe”. As of late, she has spoken about doing better recently due to receiving hypnotherapy, working out, and eating a healthy diet.
Assumptions About Trich Can be Harmful
False assumptions about trichotillomania can not only be insensitive to those actually diagnosed with it but harmful to those being assumed with it. The following stars have never outwardly claimed to have the hair picking disorder but have been widely assumed to have trich because of an association with diagnosed OCD or anxiety.
“Don’t Look Up” actor Leonardo DiCaprio is believed to have trichotillomania due to openly sharing on multiple accounts of suffering from OCD. Leo has spoken about living with OCD throughout his childhood and adult life. He mentions that his OCD is mild but that he has to consciously manage his symptoms and resist his urges. He has never claimed to have trichotillomania publicly.
Singer Katy Perry is also rumored to have trichotillomania. This may be due to the fact that she has spoken several times about the status of her mental health along with not falling into the breakdown of shaving her head (as other celebrities have infamously done in anxiety-induced moments). These comments from Katy have sparked feelings of anger from not only advocates of mental health but trichotillomania as being insensitive.
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles actress Megan Fox has also been assumed to have trichotillomania despite never confirming it publicly. Megan has been very explicit in her experience about suffering from OCD although, specifically her inability to use silverware in publicly shared spaces (such as a restaurant).
Grammy-award winner Justin Timberlake has been believed to have trichotillomania due to his admitted OCD. On the David Letterman show Justin discussed his struggle with OCD and ADD (attention deficit disorder) and how it affects his life in different ways, such as difficulty in completing daily tasks. He is rumored to have been diagnosed with trichotillomania over a decade ago in 2008.
Trichotillomania Hair Regrowth Tips
Hair regrowth with those who suffer from trichotillomania often starts with getting psychological help. In order to begin the process for your hair to properly grow back, you should actively prevent yourself from further pulling out more hair. Professional help can ensure you are treating any psychological trauma that can be associated with trichotillomania. If you are worried about your hair never growing back, fear not. Unless you are afflicted with an underlying medical condition, nutritional deficiencies, or hormonal imbalances that prevent your hair follicles from growing, your hair should grow back. Learn more about the natural hair growth process here.
We hope that you have learned something new from this article and are also more aware about trichotillomania as a disorder and how it can affect anyone, regardless of age, gender or social status. If you are struggling with hair thinning or loss in general, we at Revela are here to help you rediscover healthier, fuller-looking hair.
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