The hair pulling disorder trichotillomania affects more people than you might think. The causes for it are still not completely defined. Many people with the disease ask themselves and our expert Sheila: Why me? Why do I have trichotillomania?
Most likely, trichotillomania is the result of several factors coming together. The disorder may be related to abnormalities in the brain pathways. These pathways connect different areas like emotional regulation, movement, habit formation, and impulse control. Some patients also have to deal with depression and anxiety, which could be a reason for the disorder. Trichotillomania is slightly more likely if someone else in the family is affected. Read on to find out more theories about trichotillomania causes.
The hair pulling disorder can be an expression of negative or positive emotions.
For some people affected by trichotillomania, hair pulling is their way of dealing with negative feelings. Those negative feelings can include stress, anxiety, tension, loneliness, boredom, frustration or fatigue.
The hair pulling disease can also be related to positive feelings. Affected people find pleasure in pulling hair. It satisfies them and provides a major level of relief. As a result, they continue pulling hair in order to keep that positive feeling.
Some people dealing with trichotillomania may have a genetic predisposition to develop the hair pulling disorder. It’s proven that first-degree family members of someone struggling with trichotillomania have a higher risk of developing the disorder themselves. As trichotillomania is a chronic disease, it often starts in childhood and develops in adulthood.