Discussions By Condition: Obesessive Compulsive Disorder

trichotillomania

Posted In: Obesessive Compulsive Disorder 1 Replies
  • Posted By: surfer bill
  • July 28, 2009
  • 11:58 AM

My 22 year old daughter has trichotillomania - she obsessively pulls her eyelashes out. I guess she'll stop when she has none left. I suggested she wear cotton gloves when she is driving or typing at the computer. Any ideas about this most welcome

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  • Hi, I too have OCD. Trichotillomania (obsessively pulling out hair) is not a rare variation on OCD. Is your daughter seeing a therapist and/or on medication for this? If not, I would strongly suggest that she see a professional for a diagnosis (probably some variant of OCD), and then work out a plan for treating her problem. OCD is considered to be an anxiety disorder, so your daughter needs help in finding out what sort of anxiety is triggering this behavior. There are several ways of treating OCD (including trichotillomania). One is a form of therapy called Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). This has proven to be an excellent means of treating OCD-anxiety linked compulsions. Her therapist will help her to identify her "triggers", and probably set up a list of her fears--0 being the least stressful, 10 being extreme anxiety. Then she will probably be taken (carefully, by an experienced therapist) thru a process called ERT (Exposure and Response Prevention). This will be stressful for your daughter, but as I said before, it has had excellent results. And a knowledgeable and experienced therapist will not push her too fast or too far. Medications are another way of dealing with OCD--most often in conjunction with therapy. The medications can help ease the person's fears and anxiety to a level where they can handle the therapy--it enables them to relax sufficiently to profit from the therapy. The bottom line is that your daughter is suffering, she deserves help (which I know you realize, otherwise you wouldn't be writing! :) ) and please be assured, help is available for her. She does not have to spend the rest of her life struggling with this disorder. It will take time and dedication on her part, a good therapist, and support from those who love her, but your daughter needs to know that she most definitely can see a much freer, happier future with the proper treatment! Wishing you and your daughter the very best of luck! :D
    Tristesse 1 Replies Flag this Response
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