What Causes Trichotillomania?

Trichotillomania is a form of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) sometimes referred to as hair-pulling disorder. An obsession is some sort of intrusive thought, and trichotillomania's obsession is thoughts of hair pulling. A compulsion is a repetitive behavior, and trichotillomania's compulsion is pulling out hair. Individuals with trichotillomania usually pull out the hair on their head, eyebrows, or eyelashes. Sometimes, the patient pulls at the hair of the armpits, legs, and pubic region. This disorder is most common in young women, but the reasons for this are currently unknown. The best treatment for trichotillomania is cognitive-behavioral therapy, which focuses on stopping the compulsion and changing how an individual thinks. Get to know what can cause trichotillomania now.

Presence Of Other Mental Health Conditions


When someone has two or more co-occurring disorders, those disorders are said to be comorbid. Comorbidity can cause many complications, and the presence of other mental health conditions appears to increase the risk an individual has for developing trichotillomania. Since many mental disorders have general links in brain anatomy and physiology, as well as psychosocial causes, it is not surprising that having one increases the chance another will appear. Trichotillomania is closely related to obsessive-compulsive disorder, so individuals who have or have had OCD are more likely to develop this disorder. Having an anxiety disorder also increases the risk that someone will develop trichotillomania. Anxiety disorders and OCD have similar biological and psychological causes, and they both respond to similar treatments. Mood disorders have also been found to increase risk, but less severely than other obsessive-compulsive or anxiety disorders.

Get to know more about what may cause trichotillomania now.

HealthPrep Staff