Trichotillmania is an impulse control disorder which causes people to pull out their hair and is commonly referred to as the hair pulling disorder. This includes the act of pulling out eyelashes, scalp hair and eyebrows. Signs that someone suffers from trichotillmania include bald spots on their heads, or eyelashes. Trichotillmania was formally accepted as a disorder in the late 1980’s. Trichotillmania treatment is done using either psychological therapy or certain types of drugs.
Currently Trichotillmania treatment options are not available in a wide variety due in most part to the fact that the condition has only recently been accepted. The purpose of treatment is to help patients stop pulling out hair. The most successful treatment available at this time is habit reversal training. The steps in this treatment are designed to help an individual suffering from trichotillmania to recognize the environmental conditions which frequently trigger an episode.
This in conjunction with counseling will allow them to effectively cope with the conditions in a less destructive manor. This form of treatment varies widely in success. This success rate is largely based on the patient’s own ability to actually use the methods suggested in real life situations. Habit reversal training is currently considered the most effective trichotillmania treatment.
Forms of trichotillmania treatment involve the use of certain types of antidepressant drugs. The most common drug used for trichotillmania treatment is Clomipramine which is a tricyclic antidepressant. A double-blind study which was performed to test the effects of Clomipramine for the purpose of trichotillmania treatment suggested that it showed signs of significantly improving the symptoms commonly associated with this condition. Some psychologists believe that Clomipramine may eventually be considered the most effective trichotillmania treatment.
Other trichotillmania treatments have involved the use of Fluoxetine or Prozac to treat trichotillmania. All tests so far done on the effectiveness of Prozac have suggested little to no usefulness. These drugs also suffer from the potential for significant side effects. The use of Prozac is generally not a highly accepted form of trichotillmania treatment.
For patients suffering from trichotillmania it is important to take steps to improve the condition. The first step should always be to consult with your doctor about the condition. Your doctor should be able to make recommendations for different treatment options. Most experts in the field consider that trichotillmania treatment is best handled using psychological treatment methods and not through the use of drugs. This has generally shown to be a very effective form of treatment for those who are willing to take the necessary steps to find the causes and solutions to the problem.
Though Clomipamine has shown some success in treating this disorder, there is not a significant amount of data to prove these claims. It also suffers from the potential for side effects as with any drug. Prozac is generally considered a poor treatment method and in some studies the use of such drugs has suggested it can actually increase the problem.