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Supplement May Help Compulsive Hair Pullers

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A nutritional supplement could be the first cure for compulsive hair-pullers who pluck hair from their scalp, eyebrows and lashes to the point of baldness

 

July 2009

 

A simple nutritional supplement could provide the first medical assistance for compulsive hair-pullers, who often pluck hair from the scalp, eyebrows and lashes to the point of baldness.

 

The supplement, N-acetylcysteine, has previously been found to aid people with other compulsive disorders, and a new clinical trial showed that it benefited more than half of those who took it.

 

 

Compulsive hair-pulling, also known as trichotillomania, is marked by a high level of tension that is relieved by the hair-pulling; sufferers receive pleasure, relief or gratification from the act.

 

It is believed to affect up to 4 percent of the U.S. population, most commonly women, but accurate figures are hard to come by because many sufferers hide their conditions.

 

Victims often suffer a reduced quality of life and difficulties in working because they refuse to be seen in public.

 

There are no approved medical treatments for the condition, but cognitive behavioral therapy can help some patients.

 

The condition, like many other compulsive behaviors, is thought to arise from an imbalance of chemicals in the brain, especially levels of serotonin and glutamate, a chemical that triggers excitement.

 

N-acetylcysteine blocks production of glutamate in specific areas of the brain.

 

Dr. Jon Grant of the University of Minnesota School of Medicine and his colleagues studied 50 people with the disorder, 45 women and five men with an average age of about 34.

 

Full trichotillomania article

 

 

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:o WOW! ... iv pulled my hair since i was a young child and i was doing it while i was browsing around this site and found this!!

 

Since i started university & work its become really bad! Sometimes i don't relies that im doing it!.. my bedroom floor it wooden and every time i open and close my door there is hair that iv pulled out floating around!.. altho it's not helping my male pattern balding one bit!, Im on 1mg proscar and using rogaine foam! been using them for 3 months now.

 

Id like to try this new drug! ... is it available in the UK yet?

 

cheers

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