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I can't stop tearing my hair!

I pull my hair out and play with the strands between my fingers. I told my BFF and she told me that my hair is beautiful, so why would I do that. I don’t know why. I do it when I’m bored or stressed. I’m starting to get bald spots and I’m worried that my parents will send me to a therapist.


Dear Tearing My Hair Out,

You are not the only girl who does this. It even has a name—trichotillomania. There’s no quick fix, but here are nine ideas: 1. Get a new haircut, something short and stylish. 2. Avoid the situations that lead you to pulling. 3. Fight the impulse by reminding yourself that you want to stop more than you want to pull. 4. Forgive yourself for being imperfect (nobody’s perfect). 5. Don’t hang out in the place where you most often succumb to the habit. 6. Wear gloves. 7. Take up knitting, sketching or a craft to keep your hands busy. 8. Find healthy ways to deal with stress and boredom: more exercise, more fun activities, more time outside. 9. Consider therapy—it can work wonders.

old friends, you can! Phone, write, e-mail and plan visits. 

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BY CAROL WESTON ON 9/13/2014 12:00:00 AM

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