Effective Trich Treatments

Hi there,

I'm just coming to terms with recently being diagnosed with generalised anxiety disorder, social anxiety and depression.

After sweeping the symptoms under the carpet for many years (I'm 33 now), I've finally sought help and undergoing CBT for the conditions. One of the symptoms (or so I believe) of my anxious mind is hair pulling. I've been pulling my facial hair for as long as I remember, from when I just had a little stubble to now where I'm constantly pulling and touching my full beard and moustache.

The constant touching and pulling has affected the appearance of the beard, and the habit has also been noticed by friends, family and colleagues. It's embarrassing but it's an involuntary compulsion that I can't shake. It's affecting my self confidence and feeding my anxiety. From doing some research, I believe this is some sort of comforting mechanism, which is likely caused by my anxieties.

I guess what I'd like to know is: will treating my anxiety with CBT will help the trich or will it require a standalone treatment? I've noticed there are quite a few websites offering online coaching/therapy that promise pull-free results. One of which is www.treatmentfortrichotillomania.com, which has some good testimonials but no set information on costs. I've enquired and they'd like 100 euros for a 90 minute session, with no further information on how many sessions I'd need or how much it's likely to cost me.

I note there are also a few paid sessions and audio files through this site. How effective are they? I understand that overcoming this issue will be worth more than money but, unfortunately, I'm not currently in the financial position to spend hundreds of pounds on treatments I have no real insights on.

Any help/advice would be much appreciated.

Cheers and keep up the good work.

Lewis

Comments

  • Hi Lewis, welcome to the forum :) . Unfortunately no one can give you a definite answer as to what will or won't work. It is possible to become completely pull-free, but many people are only able to make improvements or are happy to train themselves to pull from areas where they don't mind losing hair (legs for example).

    Our treatment program currently has a 95% success rate which is based on the individual being pull-free for at least 100 days by the time their coaching period ends, and remaining pull-free for 12 months afterwards. Most people do a 12 month course and are recommended the £100/month program. The program uses a combination of behavioural therapy techniques and is tailored to the individual, but as with any therapeutic program or treatment, you get out what you put in.

    I would complete your course of CBT and give it 100% of everything you've got. If your therapist tells you to do something every day, do it. If they want you to read something, listen to something etc, do it. Even if it doesn't help, that information will help your therapist to adjust their treatment for you because we're all different in what we respond best to. You may very well see your pulling reduces with your anxiety levels but if not, you can tackle it separately when you've completed the course of treatment, which is the case for most people, but not all.

    In the meantime, the audio on our website does work very well for many people and can help with stress, anxiety and getting to sleep as well - all things that make pulling worse! We also have lots of tips and support available at no cost at all, so feel free to drop us a message through the site and I'll send you our support documents :)

    Take care,

    Michelle

  • Hey Lewis

    Sorry it has taken me so long to see your thread here. I am one of the coaches at trichotillomania support, the website which Michelle hopefully directed you to. Most people with trichotillomania fit the criteria for generalised anxiety disorder and social anxiety. I'm so sorry to hear that you also have depression - we can certainly help and support you with that.

    Primarily I would say, don't suffer alone. You are NOT alone, there are a lot of us here who understand what you're going through and want to listen. Why not post again and tell us how you are getting on with CBT.

    CBT is not for everyone, and the treatment of choice for trichotillomania is more along the lines of ACT (Acceptance and Commitment Therapy) so do bear us in mind if you struggle with CBT.

    Mostly, though, we just want to hear about how well you are doing and cheer you on.

    Pull free IS possible and I am a prime example of that, having been pull free since 2002.

    Keep[ posting
    Love and pull freedom
    Neo

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