Monday, July 29, 2019

The Secret Life of Alopecia

    All my life I have had unruly thick curly hair . As I have gotten older it has thinned a little but nothing most people would notice and it actually was kind of nice because it has made my hair a little less out of control. Nothing of course could have prepared me for the oh so not fun symptoms of alopecia areata.
     Not long after my brother passed away I noticed a quarter sized bald spot on the left side of my scalp. I know that I have a lot of hair to cover it up but that did  not make it any less upsetting. For a few weeks I used the anti inflammatory medication my dermatologist suggested to no avail . Even worse the bald spot spread. Unless you have experienced this you can't imagine how awful it is.
     Alopecia areata is often brought on by extreme stress. It is an autoimmune disease that tells your cells to attack your hair follicles and make you lose patches of hair. The sudden loss of my brother brought it on. One's hair grows back after alopecia areata but it can take awhile. Some people lose all of their hair from it and often there is more than one bald spot. In my case I have one large spot and two other smaller spots. The hair is now SLOWLY growing back but only due to the VERY painful injections  from my dermatologist.
        I have friends who laugh at me because my hair covers my bald spots. They  don't realize how unsettling alopecia is . Nothing like the fear of alopecia totalis to keep a person up at night . The worst part is that because stress can cause alopecia , worrying about it really does not help.
       I never felt too excited about covering my hair after marriage but in the condition I am in now it does not sound so bad !
       Men reading this probably don't feel bad for me but it really is worse for a woman to suffer hair loss than for a man just as being a short  woman is not as bad as being a height deficient male.
        I realize that this is not the worst ailment to suffer from. When a good friend's dad passed away she got shingles. Nonetheless, alopecia areata is no picnic.

No comments: