My daughter pulls her hair out!

[deleted account] ( 6 moms have responded )

My twin 15 month old daughter pulls her hair out around her bang area and uses it like dental floss! At first I thought it was funny, now she has a bald spot. Is this normal? Did anyone else's child do this? How do I make her stop!! She won't wear hat's or head bands and when I pull her hair up, she will pull it down and continue to pull out her hair! HELP!


[deleted account]

well he doesn't use it like dental floss but he does pull his hair out. try and figure out when she does it (while driking a bottle or whenever) and then provide her with something else to pull on like a fluffy stuffed toy.


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Mary - posted on 04/08/2011




I agree with Susan and Mia; it very well could be trichotillomania, and you should start by talking to her ped about it.

My niece started doing this at around the age of two and a half. It was almost immediately after they had changed day care providers. She often did it in her sleep. She developed huge bald patches all over her head, and often, was mistaken for a cancer patient undergoing chemo by strangers.

It was also around this time that they realized that she had multiple food allergies, as well as pretty significant seasonal allergies. The hair-pulling was really bad for about a year or two (and they did take her to a child psychologist), but it did eventually get better. However, they did notice that it got much worse during allergy season (change in weather), and at 8, she no longer has bald spots on her head, but her behavior is definitely still impacted by seasonal changes, despite allergy meds.

I'm not suggesting that these are your daughter's issues, but merely pointing out that there are a variety of things, from the emotional to the environmental, that can be causing some type of stress to your daughter. The hair pulling is most likely her way of self-soothing and coping.

[deleted account]

Hey... i don't want to freak you out but you really should see a psychologist or psychiatrist. i am a psychologist and work a lot with kids (most trauma backgrounds but still....) and it's impossible to diagnose something like trichotillomania over this online forum - she would need to be seen - and it MAY VERY WELL not be but if it is she should get treatment right away and you should also get involved so you know the best ways to cope/manage her stress. don't freak out - it doesn't mean you're a bad parent or your daughter is messed up - we all have our issues whether they start in infancy or adulthood, just figure out what hers is and then you won't have to wonder anymore!

Mandy - posted on 04/07/2011




OMG, seeing your message just made my heart jump. My 3 year old is pulling her hair out as well. She's always twiddled but over the last few months she is also pulling. She has stopped doing a lot while awake but she does it asleep. She has lost about 50% of her hair on the entire left side. The reward system and being down right FIRM with her has helped I think.

Stephanie - posted on 04/07/2011




if susan is right you need to go see a doctor.
i'm assuming telling her "no" is not working?? or making faces when she does it?? like "ouch, that hurts... do you have a 'booboo' now".
if it is a compulsive behavior you need to get professional help.

Susan - posted on 04/05/2011




This may be trichotillomania. I just googled it and it can appear in infancy. Check with your pediatrician.

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