In early 2017, WWE diva Paige fell victim to the dark side of the internet after a sex tape and intimate photos were leaked. In a recent interview, the star has revealed just how devastating it’s effects were.
In the months following the leak, she started to suffer from hair loss triggered by anorexia and even contemplated suicide. While extreme, her story highlights just how much of an impact stress can have on the hair. Here, we’ll look at the different types of stress related hair loss and how they can be treated.
Understanding stress related hair loss
It’s no secret that high levels of stress can trigger hair loss. However, did you know that there’s actually three different types of stress related hair loss you can suffer with? They include:
- Telogen Effluvium
- Alopecia Areata
Trichotillomania is a psychological condition which causes a person to develop severe urges to pull out their own hair. As well as pulling hair from the scalp, sufferers often also pluck out their eyebrows and hair from other parts of the body. It’s often a response to stress, though it can also be triggered by boredom and frustration.
Telogen Effluvium is the most common stress related form of hair loss. As the body becomes stressed, it forces more hair to go into the resting, or telogen, phase. Then, when it reaches the fall-out stage, it all falls out together, leaving obvious thinning and in some cases, patches of hair loss.
In rare circumstances, stress can trigger Alopecia Areata. This is a more serious form of the condition and it occurs when the body’s immune system starts to attack its own cells, including the hair follicles.
Seeking the right treatment
The good news about stress related hair loss is that it is only usually temporary. Once the stress disappears, it resolves itself naturally. However, in the meantime there are treatments available.
If you’re diagnosed with Trichotillomania, you’ll likely need to undergo cognitive behavioural therapy. For Telogen Effluvium, medications such as Minoxidil or Finasteride may be prescribed. However, treatment for Alopecia Areata is a little more complex and in extreme cases there is no cure if the follicles have been permanently damaged.
Overall, stress is known to lead to hair loss, but it is only usually temporary. Before trying out any treatment, it’s vital you seek a correct diagnosis to determine which treatment will work best for you.