Lesbian Hair Pulling | Causes, Symptoms and Treatment of Trichotillomania

Lesbian hair pulling, also known as trichotillomania or trich, is a mental health disorder. Lesbians are twice as likely to suffer from trichotillomania than straight women. The good news is that you can stop hair-pulling. In this article, you will learn why you pull your hair, what causes it and what you can do about it.

Key Takeaways

  1. Trichotillomania can affect anyone, but it occurs most frequently in young homosexual women
  2. Hair pulling can affect anyone, but it can be managed through behavioral therapy
  3. Treatment for trichotillomania focuses on stopping the behavior and helping people cope with urges when they occur.
  4. Trichotillomania is a severe and chronic condition that can devastate a lesbian’s quality of life
  5. Hair pulling vice can harm a lesbian’s relationship and appearance

What Causes Lesbian Hair Pulling?

There are several theories as to why this might be the case. One theory is that lesbians and young adults have higher levels of stress because of discrimination against them by society and family members. Another candidate is the idea that lesbians are more likely to experience childhood sexual abuse than straight women, which could lead them to develop Trichotillomania later on in life.

a person holding their hair

More theories about what might trigger the irresistible urges in some women in the LGBTQ include:


Hair pulling is often a genetic condition. If you have a family member who has ever had trichotillomania, then there is a chance that you will inherit it as well. However, some lesbians may be more susceptible to trichotillomania pull hair than others because of their genetics. However, this does not mean that if you have a family member, you will automatically develop it.


Lesbians frequently experience stress and pressure from within themselves or the outside world. Stress can be one of the biggest triggers for someone with trichotillomania. Stress can be caused by many things, including schoolwork, family issues, lesbian relationship problems, and more. When stressed out, our bodies release endorphins into our system, making us feel better about ourselves and our lives. Lesbians who pull their hair when stressed may do so to feel better about themselves. Some also do so to stop themselves from feeling anxious or nervous about something in their life.


The chemicals in your brain that control mood and behavior are called neurotransmitters. Neurotransmitters transmit signals between nerve cells (neurons). One type of neurotransmitter is dopamine, which helps regulate your brain’s reward system and plays an essential role in impulse control. Studies suggest that lesbians with trichotillomania may have lower levels of dopamine than people without the disorder.

a woman's head from the back

Trichotillomania Classifications

Trichotillomania can be classified into three main types:

Classic Trichotillomania

Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is the most common comorbidity in classic trichotillomania. Classic trichotillomania is associated with tics and other obsessive-compulsive symptoms. Patients may also have a co-occurring body dysmorphic disorder or Tourette syndrome.

Anxiety-Related Trichotillomania

This type of trichotillomania occurs when the patient has an anxiety disorder such as social phobia or panic disorder. Patients with this type of trichotillomania often have low self-esteem and poor body image, leading them to pull their hair out leading to massive hair loss.

Treatment-Induced Trichotillomania

Treatment-induced trichotillomania occurs after a person takes an antidepressant medication such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). This type of trichotillomania generally goes away after discontinuing the medication or changing it to another drug class.

What Are the Three Symptoms of Trichotillomania?

The main symptoms of trichotillomania include:


It’s one of the primary signs of trichotillomania. Lesbians with trichotillomania may consume their hair in various ways. Some chew on it directly or put it into their mouths to suck on and spit out. Others eat food off their heads, putting food into their mouth, then pulling out and eating their hair as they eat the food.

Some lesbians don’t ingest their hair but rather rub it against the inside of their cheeks or gums until it breaks apart into small pieces that can be swallowed without detection by their spouses.

Skin Irritation or Tingling at Affected Sites

When a lesbian with trichotillomania pulls their hair out, they often experience some physical sensation in the area where they pulled out their hair. It can cause them to want to pull more hair out in that area. Some women describe this as a feeling similar to having an insect crawling on its scalp. The feeling may initially be described as pleasant but usually irritates after repeated pulling episodes.

Noticeable Hair Loss

Hair damage and loss can be either partial or complete and occur anywhere on the body except for the scalp. The hair loss pattern may be patchy or even involve large areas of an individual’s body, including the eyebrows or eyelashes.

a worried woman holding the comb

How Common Is This Condition?

Trichotillomania is a relatively common condition, but it’s hard to know exactly how many lesbians have it. The condition isn’t usually reported to doctors or other health care professionals. It’s also hard to estimate the number of lesbians who have trich because many tend to hide away this vice even from their partners.

However, It’s estimated that about 3.5% have this condition. Of this, 2% are women in the US who have trichotillomania. Among men, the figure is about 1.5 %. Trich also affects people of all ages and races, although some studies show that about 90% of patients are female.

How Does This Condition Affect My Body?

Trichotillomania is not considered a severe disease and does not cause serious health problems. However, it can affect a woman’s physical appearance and lead to other problems.

Physical Effects

Bald spots may appear on your scalp or face if you pull out your own hair from those areas. It may be small or large, depending on how often you pull your hair. If you pluck them usually, you may also have noticeable white dots at the tips of your eyelashes.

You can get infections in your mouth or nose if you bite your nails or pick at scabs on your skin. Scabs that are picked at often can become infected with bacteria or fungi because they are open wounds that don’t heal properly. It can lead to an infection called cellulitis, which causes redness, swelling, warmth, and tenderness around the area where the skin is broken.

Trichotillomania can also increase the risk factors of developing other skin and hair damage. The skin conditions include acne, eczema, and psoriasis because it causes stress that affects hormone levels in the body.

a stressed woman sitting on the sofa

Psychological Effects

Trichotillomania can impact a woman’s self-esteem, social life, and lesbian relationships. Lesbians with trichotillomania are often emotionally distressed by their appearance and withdraw from their girlfriends or wives. Some may try to hide their symptoms by wearing hats or makeup.

Other psychological effects include:

  • Depression
  • Anxiety
  • Stress


Is Trichotillomania A Form of OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder)?

Yes, trichotillomania is one of several Obsessive Compulsive Disorders. Trichotillomania and other disorders such as skin picking (dermatillomania), hair pulling, and nail biting are classified under “body-focused repetitive behaviors” or BFRBs.

Is It Normal for Lesbians to Pull Hair?

Yes, it is normal and natural for lesbians to pull hair. In fact, we all do it in some form or another. Some of us are more aware of it than others, but we all have a part of us that pulls our hair.

Is Hair Pulling Disorder an Anxiety Disorder?

No, hair-pulling behavior is not an anxiety disorder or even a mental disorder. Trichotillomania is not an anxiety disorder, and many lesbians with trichotillomania do not have an anxiety disorder. Lesbians with trichotillomania may be anxious or depressed, but these feelings are usually related to the condition’s adverse effects rather than caused by it. We know that a person can have trichotillomania without other mental disorders.

Do Lesbians With Trichotillomania Have Poor Hygiene?

No, trichotillomania does not cause poor hygiene. But some lesbians with trichotillomania develop poor hygiene due to their symptoms (e.g., pulling out eyebrow hairs). If you have concerns about your grooming habits and whether they might relate to hair-pulling behaviors, please see a mental health professional for evaluation and treatment recommendations.

Is It Possible to Stop My Hair from Pulling?

Yes, it’s possible to stop pulling hair through behavioral therapy, but it may not be easy only if you seek treatment. Through habit reversal lesbian therapy, many lesbians find their hair pulling disorder less frequent. However, some women continue to experience a strong urge to pull, making treating trichotillomania a slow process.

The most effective habit reversal and therapy techniques to help you to stop pulling focus on increasing awareness of the behavior and reducing stress and anxiety that may trigger trichotillomania episodes. There is also evidence that medication and behavior therapy can help reduce the urge to pull and improve the overall quality of life for lesbians with trichotillomania.

a woman asking for help

Get Help!

Sometimes when a lesbian is not getting what she needs from her partner, she may resort to hair pulling. This form of control can be very damaging to both parties involved. If you are a victim of this type of abuse, you need to speak up and get help. It’s also essential for friends and family members of lesbian victims to know that this problem exists so that they can offer support.

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